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10 Interesting Facts About Leap Year

From Caesar, calendar changes, to cocktails - this Leap Year has it all.

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1. We have Leap Days because it keeps our calendar in step with the Earth’s rotation.

Without an extra day on February 29 nearly every four years, we would lose almost six hours every year.

2. Julius Caesar introduced the first leap year around 46 B.C. with an extra day every four years.

However, his math was a little off. He created too many leap years. Every 400 years, there are an three extra days, so to compensate, centuries must be divisible by 400 to count as leap years (so it's not exactly every four years).

3. In Ireland, 29 February is called Bachelor's Day, when women (traditionally) can propose to men.

Scotland began the tradition in 1288 by passing a law permitting women to propose and if refused, the man had to pay a fine (one of the fines included gifting a silk dress).

4. In Greece it is considered bad luck to get married or engaged during a Leap Year.

5. In Russia, leap years are thought to bring strange weather and an increased chance of death.

6. Every three years, a whole month is added to the Chinese calendar for Chinese Leap Year. The placement of the additional month varies from year to year.

7. The chances of having a birthday on a leap day are about one in 1,461.

If you’re born on leap day, you’re called a “leapling” or “leaper.”

8. If you get paid an annual salary, you may be working a day for free! Sometimes the extra day isn’t accounted for.

9. Anthony, TX is the Leap Year Capital of the World.

The title originated from two locals who presented their idea to host a festival and birthday party for anyone born on Leap Day, Feb. 29th.

10. There is an Official Leap Day Cocktail.

1 dash lemon juice

2/3 gin

1/6 Grand Marnier

1/6 sweet vermouth

It is said to have been "responsible for more proposals than any other cocktail ever mixed.”

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