Thu. Nov 26th, 2020

End of the world: Astronomers break silence over June 21 doomsday

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Conspiracy theorists had claimed the dates of the Maya calendar had been misinterpreted, and that the end of the world will actually be tomorrow. Back in 2012, the internet was abuzz with claims that the Maya calendar was set to end on December 21. That date came and went without the apocalypse, leaving many doomsdayers red faced.

Now however, the bizarre claims are back, with suggestions there were discrepancies in how the calendar had been interpreted.

The claims resurfaced following a tweet from Paolo Tagaloguin, who explained his theory on Twitter.

He said: “Following the Julian Calendar, we are technically in 2012… The number of days lost in a year due to the shift into Gregorian Calendar is 11 days… For 268 years using the Gregorian Calendar (1752-2020) times 11 days = 2,948 days. 2,948 days / 365 days (per year) = 8 years.”

This takes the apparent end of the world from December 21, 2012, to June 21, 2020.

But once again the claims have been absolutely rubbished by people in the know, stating there is no scientific evidence to support the theory.

Hasan Al Hariri, CEO of the Dubai Astronomy Group, told Gulf News: “Science is elegant and beautiful, but it requires effort to understand. This is a golden opportunity to educate people.

“Any person with a scientific temperament, not necessarily a scientist, cannot support these type of messages.”

Other astronomers have also dismissed the claim, stating that the maths and new interpretation is simply wrong.

Astronomer Phil Plait explained on SyFy: “The Gregorian calendar does not lose 11 days per year! Basically, the Julian calendar, which was widely used a long time ago, didn’t account for leap years very well, so hundreds of years ago countries started switching to the Gregorian calendar, which does a better job (though it’s a little complicated).

“When they did, the calendar had to jump forward a bunch of days to compensate for days missed— usually about 10 or 11 days — but it was only done once.

“Not every year. So the claim that somehow 8 years have been skipped is wrong.

“Second, that doesn’t matter anyway, because the 21 December 2012 date was converted from the Maya calendar to the Gregorian one in the first place.

“So there’s no reason to even bring the Julian calendar into this. It doesn’t make sense.”

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