Yoruba calendar

The Yoruba calendar (Kọ́jọ́dá) is a calendar used by the Yoruba people of southwestern and north central Nigeria and southern Benin. The calendar has a year beginning on the last moon of May or first moon of June of the Gregorian calendar. The new year coincides with the Ifá festival.

The traditional Yoruba week has four days. The four days that are dedicated to the Orisa go as follow:

To reconcile with the Gregorian calendar, Yoruba people also measure time in seven days a week and four weeks a month. The four-day calendar was dedicated to the Orisas and the seven-day calendar is for doing business.

The seven days are: Ọjọ́-Àìkú (Sunday), Ọjọ́-Ajé (Monday), O̩jọ́-Ìṣẹ́gun (Tuesday), Ọjọ́rú (Wednesday), Ọjọ́bo̩ (Thursday), Ọjọ́-E̩tì (Friday) and O̩jọ́-Àbamé̩ta (Saturday).

Time (Ìgbà, àsìkò, àkókò) is measured in ìṣẹ́jú-àáyá (seconds), ìṣẹ́jú (minutes), wákàtì (hours), ọjọ́ (days), o̩sẹ̀ (weeks), oṣù (months) and ọdún (years).

There are 60 seconds (ìṣẹ́jú-àáyá ọgọ́ta) in 1 minute (ìṣẹ́jú kan); 60 minutes (ìṣẹ́jú ọgọ́ta) in 1 hour (wákàtì kan); 24 hours (wákàtì mẹ́rinlélógún) in 1 day (ọjọ́ kan); 7 days (ọjọ́ méje) in 1 week (ọsẹ̀ kan); 4 or 5 weeks (ọsẹ̀ mẹ́rin tàbí máàrùn-ún) in one month (oṣù kan); 52 weeks (ọsẹ̀ méjìléláàádọ́ta), 12 months (oṣù méjìlá), and 365 days (ọjọ́ mẹ́rindínláàádọ́rinlélọ́ọ̀ọ́dúnrún) in 1 year (ọdún kan).

Calendar examplesEdit

The Yoruba traditional calendar is called “KỌ́JỌ́DÁ” 'Kí ọjó̩ dá,' meaning: may the day be clearly foreseen.

KỌ́JỌ́DÁ 10053/ CALENDAR 2011-2012
ÒKÙDÚ 10053 / June 2011
Ọsẹ̀ 91st 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th
O̩jó̩-Ṡàngó /Jakuta 2 6 10 14 18 22 26 30
O̩jọ́-Ȯrùnmílá /Ìfá 3 7 11 15 19 23 27
Ọ́jọ́-Ògún 4 8 12 16 20 24 28
Ọjọ́-O̩bàtálá 1 5 9 13 17 21 25 29

The traditional Yoruba calendar (Kọ́jọ́dá) has a 4-day week and 91 weeks in a year. The Yoruba year spans from 3 June of a Gregorian calendar year to 2 June of the following year. According to the calendar developed by Remi-Niyi Alaran, the Gregorian year 2021 AD is the 10,063rd year of Yoruba records of time.[1][unreliable source?] With the British colonial and European cultural invasions, came the need to reconcile with the Gregorian calendar: Yoruba people also measure time in seven days a week and 52 weeks a year.

Calendar terminologiesEdit

ỌSẸ̀ in Yoruba calendar Day in Gregorian calendar
Ọjọ́-Àìkú (Day of Immortality) Sunday
Ọjọ́-Ajé (Day of Economic Enterprise) Monday
Ọjọ́-Ìṣégun (Day of Victory) Tuesday
Ọjọ́rú (Day of Confusion & Disruption) Wednesday
Ọjọ́bọ̀ (Day of Arrival) Thursday
O̩jó̩-Ẹtì (Day of Postponement & Delay) Friday
Ọjọ́-Àbámẹ́ta (Day of the Three Suggestions) Saturday
Oṣù in Yoruba calendar Months in Gregorian calendar
Òkúdù June
Agẹmọ (Month of the Chameleon) July
Ògún (Month of the òrìṣà Ògún) August
Ọwẹ́wẹ̀ or Owewe September
Ọ̀wàrà or Ọ̀wààrà (Month of the many Rain Showers) October
Belu November
Ọ̀pẹ (Month of the Palm Tree) December
Ṣẹrẹ January
Èrèlé (Month of Blessings of the Home) February
Ẹrẹ́nà March
Igbe (Month of Proclamation) April
Èbìbí (Month of Request & Petition) May

Worship of the Òrìṣà in specific monthsEdit

Ṣẹrẹ/JanuaryEdit

Èrèlé/FebruaryEdit

  • Dedicated to Olóòkun = Òrìṣà of òkun, the deep seas or oceans, patron of sailors, and guardian of souls lost at sea.

Èrèlé/Feb 21-25

Ẹrẹ́nà/MarchEdit

  • Annual rites of passage for men

Ẹrẹ́nà/March 12 – 28

  • Dedicated to Oduduwa "Iyaagbe," Òrìṣà of Earth and matron of the Ayé (the world), father of the Yoruba people

Ẹrẹ́nà/March 15 – 19

Ẹrẹ́nà/March 21 – 24:

Igbe/AprilEdit

  • Onset of rainy season

Èbìbí/MayEdit

  • Dedicated to Egúngún (Commemoration of the Ancestors, including community founders and illustrious dead).

Òkúdù/JuneEdit

  • June 3: Onset of the Yoruba New Year (2021 is the 10,063rd year of Yoruba culture). Ọrúnmilà / Ifá = Òrìṣà of Divination and custodian of the Ifá. It includes a Mass gathering of the Yoruba in the city of Ife, regarded as the center of creation.
  • Sopona - Òrìṣà of Disease & smallpox, also known as Obaluaye. Ṣọ̀pọ̀na is also the word for smallpox disease.
  • Ọ̀sanyìn - Òrìṣà of Plants, magic, Medicine, and patron of the healing professions
  • Òkúdù 10 - 23: Annual rites of passage for women
  • Òkúdù 18 - 21: Yemoja = mother of the Òrìṣà, Òrìṣà of fertility, women, and water).

Agẹmo/JulyEdit

  • Agẹmo: first and second weeks in July
  • Oko (Agriculture) - Harvests & worship of the Òrìṣà of Farming Oko
  • Dedicated to Èṣù "Ẹlégba" - one who has power to seize. He is the great Communicator and messenger of the will of Olódùmarè.
  • Dedicated to Ṣàngó "Jakuta" - the Òrìṣà of Energy, àrá (Thunder), and Mànàmáná/Mọ̀nàmọ́ná (lightning)

Ògún/AugustEdit

  • The annual Ọ̀ṣun-Òṣogbo festival occurs in August
  • Dedicated to Ọ̀ṣun - Òrìṣà of Fertility and custodian of the female essence who guides pregnancies to term.
  • Dedicated to Ogun - Òrìṣà of iron/metals (i.e. - a smith), war crafts, hunting, technology and engineering. The custodian of truth and executioner of justice, as such patron of the legal and counselling professions who must swear to uphold truth while biting on a piece of metal. (last weekend of August)

Ọwẹ́wẹ̀ or Owewe/SeptemberEdit

  • It is the month in which festivals such as New Yam Festivals, are being celebrated and it is a month of blessing. It celebrates how Yoruba is a rich culture.

Ọ̀wàrà or Ọ̀wààrà/OctoberEdit

  • Ọ̀wàrà refers to the intense rain showers that occur during the month
  • Dedicated to Oya (Òrìṣà of the river Niger whose is the guardian of gateway between the physical realm (Aye) and the spiritual realm (Òrún).
  • Also dedicated to Ṣìgìdì - Òrìṣà of Òrún-Apadi, the realm of the unsettled spirits and the ghosts of the dead that have left Aye and are forsaken of Òrún-Rere (Heaven).
  • Also the onset of the dry season

Belu/NovemberEdit

Ọ̀pẹ/DecemberEdit

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit