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Dionysius Exiguus invented Anno Domini years to date Easter.
Anno Domini inscription at a cathedral in Carinthia, Austria.

The term anno Domini is Medieval Latin, which means in the year of the Lord<ref></ref> but is often translated as in the year of our Lord.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref><ref>{{#invoke:Footnotes|harvard_citation_no_bracket}} "since AD stands for anno Domini, 'in the year of (Our) Lord'".</ref>:782 It is occasionally set out more fully as anno Domini nostri Iesu (or Jesu) Christi ("in the year of Our Lord Jesus Christ"). The terms anno Domini{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}<ref>The word "anno" is often capitalized, but this is considered incorrect by many authorities and either not mentioned in major dictionaries or only listed as an alternative. Wikipedia's manual of style also prescribes lowercase.</ref><ref>http://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/anno-domini</ref><ref>https://www.ahdictionary.com/word/search.html?q=anno%20Domini</ref> (AD or A.D.) and before Christ<ref>The word "before" is often capitalized, but this is considered incorrect by many authorities and either not mentioned in major dictionaries or only listed as an alternative. Wikipedia's manual of style also prescribes lowercase.</ref><ref>http://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/bc</ref><ref>https://www.ahdictionary.com/word/search.html?q=before%20Christ</ref><ref>http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bc</ref> (BC or B.C.) are used to label or number years in the Julian and Gregorian calendars.

This calendar era is based on the traditionally reckoned year of the conception or birth of Jesus of Nazareth, with AD counting years from the start of this epoch, and BC denoting years before the start of the era. There is no year zero in this scheme, so the year AD 1 immediately follows the year 1 BC. This dating system was devised in 525, but was not widely used until after 800.<ref name=Teresi1997>{{#invoke:Citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=journal }} </ref>

The Gregorian calendar is the most widely used calendar in the world today. For decades, it has been the unofficial global standard, adopted in the pragmatic interests of international communication, transportation, and commercial integration, and recognized by international institutions such as the United Nations.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref>{{ safesubst:#invoke:Unsubst||$N=Self-published source |date=__DATE__ |$B= {{#invoke:Category handler|main}}[self-published source] }}

Traditionally, English followed Latin usage by placing the "AD" abbreviation before the year number.<ref>This convention comes from grammatical usage. Anno 500 means "in the year 500"; anno domini 500 means "in the year 500 of Our Lord". Just as "500 in the year" is not good English syntax, neither is 500 AD; whereas "AD 500" preserves syntactic order when translated (Chicago Manual of Style 2010, pp. 476–7; Goldstein 2007, p. 6).</ref> However, BC is placed after the year number (for example: AD 2021, but 68 BC), which also preserves syntactic order. The abbreviation is also widely used after the number of a century or millennium, as in "fourth century AD" or "second millennium AD" (although conservative usage formerly rejected such expressions).<ref>Chicago Manual of Style, 1993, p. 304.</ref> Because BC is the English abbreviation for Before Christ, it is sometimes incorrectly concluded that AD means After Death, i.e., after the death of Jesus. However, this would mean that the ~33 years commonly associated with the life of Jesus would not be included in either of the BC and the AD time scales.<ref>Donald P. Ryan, (2000), 15.</ref>

Terminology that is viewed by some as being more neutral and inclusive of non-Christian people is to call this the Current, or Common Era (abbreviated as CE or C.E.), with the preceding years referred to as Before the Common, Christian, or Current Era (BCE or B.C.E.). Astronomical year numbering and ISO 8601 avoid words or abbreviations related to Christianity, but use the same numbers for AD years.


Anno Domini sections
Intro   History   Historical birth date of Jesus  Other eras   CE and BCE   No year zero  Proposed reforms  See also  Notes and references  [[Anno_Domini?section=External</a>_links|External</a> links]]  

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