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English: Postcard: Leap year, 1908 Description...

In some countries, it's tradition for women to propose on a leap year.

February 29th only comes once every 4 years (or every 8 years–the next time this will happen is in 2096 to 2104). I learned a lot of things about this unique date such as:

  • the earth orbits around the sun in 365.25 days, thus to compensate for this, every 4 years is declared a leap year and one extra day is added to the month of February
  • leap years are divisible by 4; years that are multiples of 100, must be divisible by both 100 and 400 (2000 was a leap year, the year 1700 was not).
  • there are about 4.1 million people worldwide born on Feb. 29; the chances of being born on leap day is 1 in 1500
  • if someone is born on a leap day, March 1 is usually listed as their official birthday (this varies from place to place)
  • in Great Britain and Ireland, it’s traditional for women to propose marriage on leap years; in Greece, it’s considered unlucky to marry in a leap year
  • people who are sentenced for crimes in a leap year, actually serve an extra day in jail
  • we all get an extra day to file our taxes during a leap year
  • stores offer extended sales in honour of Leap Day

Happy Leap Day. I hope you’re doing something memorable on this day that only comes every 4 years.

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