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5 Sundays, 5 Mondays, 5 Tuesdays in August 2010

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5 Sundays, 5 Mondays, 5 Tuesdays
5 Sundays, 5 Mondays, 5 Tuesdays in August 2010

Netlore Archive: Forwarded email observes that the month of August 2010 had five Sundays, five Mondays, and five Tuesdays, claiming that this only happens once every 823 years.

Image source: Unknown, circulating via email

Description: Forwarded email / Hoax
Circulating since: Aug. 2010
Status: Partly true


Example:
Email contributed by Elaine K., Aug. 27, 2010:

Subject: You are experiencing something no one alive will ever see again!!

This August has 5 Sundays, 5 Mondays, 5 Tuesdays, all in one month. It happens once in 823 years.


Analysis: True, the month of August 2010 had five Sundays, five Mondays, and five Tuesdays, but it's hardly the once-in-a-lifetime event this email makes it out to be. The same thing will happen again in 2021, 2027, and 2032.

Nor is August the only month in which this calendrical "oddity" occurs. Any month that has 31 days and begins on a Sunday will feature the same combination of fives. So, for example, May 2011 will have five Sundays, five Mondays, and five Tuesdays, as will January 2012, July 2012, and so on.

By the same token, a 31-day month that begins on a Saturday will have five Saturdays, five Sundays, and five Mondays (and so on). It should come as no surprise, then, that in August 2009, which in fact began on a Saturday and boasted five full weekends, people were claiming that that only happens once every 823 years. For example:

August 2009 is a unique month which has 5 Sundays and 5 Saturdays. Experts says to see another month with 5 Sundays and 5 Saturdays, we need to live another 823 years. We are blessed to go through and experience this unique month. Now we have to wait for generations to see another month with 5 Sundays and 5 Saturdays. Let us thank God for allowing us to see this unique month.

Quite to the contrary, the next "unique" month with five Saturdays and Sundays occurred less than a year later, in May 2010. Go figure!

Update: It only took a month for a new version to appear stating that October 2010 has five Fridays, five Saturdays, and five Sundays (true), and that — guess what — this only happens once every 823 years (false).


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See also:

Leap Year History and Folklore
Folklore and traditions associated with the phenomenon of leap years

Why Friday the 13th Is Unlucky
A semi-successful attempt to pin down the origins of this not-so-ancient superstition


Last updated 10/13/10

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