Campaigning for an
independent Friesland

Ritual Year

In ancient times, as we know from the Oera Linda Book, the Frisians regarded the winter-solstice, or yule (jol) as the start of the year, which they symbolised with a six-spoked wheel. They held a seasonal festival every two months to celebrate the agricultural cycle, and their names for the months have survived, in modified form, to this day. The following table shows their normalised positions against the modern calendar. It assumes that the festivals, marked in red, lay outside the months, and that the latter were of uniform length.

 English Names Frisian Names Days Normal Year Leap Year
 Yule Feast Jûlfeest 1 21 Dec 22 Dec
 1 Fore Month Foarmoanne 30 22 Dec-20 Jan 23 Dec-21 Jan
 2 Soil Month Sellemoanne 30 21 Jan-19 Feb 22 Jan-20 Feb
 Foreyear Feast Foarjiersfeest 1 20 Feb 21 Feb
 3 Foreyear Month Foarjiersmoanne 30 21 Feb-22 Mar 22 Feb-22 Mar
 4 Grass Month Gersmoanne 30 23 Mar-21 Apr 23 Mar-21 Apr
 Bloom Feast Blommefeest 1 22 Apr 22 Apr
 5 Bloom Month Blommemoanne 30 23 Apr-22 May 23 Apr-22 May
 6 Summer Month Simmermoanne 30 23 May-21 Jun 23 May-21 Jun
 Hay Feast Heafeest 1 22 Jun 22 Jun
 7 Hay Month Heamoanne 30 23 Jun-22 Jul 23 Jun-22 Jul
 8 Reap Month Rispmoanne 30 23 Jul-21 Aug 23 Jul-21 Aug
 Harvest Feast Hjerstfeest 1 22 Aug 22 Aug
 9 Harvest Month Hjerstmoanne 30 23 Aug-21 Sep 23 Aug-21 Sep
 10 Wine Month Wynmoanne 30 22 Sep-21 Oct 22 Sep-21 Oct
 Slaughter Feast Slachtfeest 1 22 Oct 22 Oct
 11 Slaughter Month Slachtmoanne 30 23 Oct-21 Nov 23 Oct-21 Nov
 12 Winter Month Wintermoanne 29 (30) 22 Nov-20 Dec 22 Nov-21 Dec

The Frisians numbered their years from the submergence of Aldland, or Atland, an event that is said to have occurred in 2194 BC. This was also the year that Frya, ancestress of the Frisians, issued her Tex, or law-code, before ascending to her watch-star. AD 2011, therefore, is equivalent to 4204 ASA (‘After the Sinking of Atland’).

Yule Lamp with Wheel Symbol