Chlouvānem/Calendar and time

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Time expressions in the Chlouvānem language need understanding of the timekeeping system of the Chlouvānem populations. The Chlouvānem calendar (chlǣvānumi pārṇahaleṃlāṇa) is a lunisolar calendar and is one of two timekeeping systems used officially on Calémere, the other one being the standard Western calendar used by the majority of nations. Despite being used only in four countries (the Inquisition, Brono, Fathan, and Qualdomailor), it is the timekeeping system for about 20% of the planet's population, the vast majority in the Inquisition.
The count of years of the Chlouvānem calendar begins with the (mythical) foundation of Lælavāši (Lälawaashi in Lällshag), a city often cited in Lällshag (the people the Chlouvānem borrowed the calendar from) legends and possibly located near modern Erukamarta. The current year is 3874 (642410). While even the existence of the legendary city of Lælavāši is dubious, year 0, calculated about a thousand years ago by literary scholars, is conveniently close to the accepted beginning of Calémerian Holocene and thus the Lällshag-Chlouvānem calendar can be said to count the years since the birth of civilization.

In this article Chlouvānem names will be used, but the languages of the other countries all follow the same system, often with borrowed Chlouvānem numerals for duodecimal numbers.

The Chlouvānem calendar

Solar months and seasons

The solar and sidereal year of Calémere (in Chlouvānem heirah) is 418.1282 Calemerian days long (about 609.6 days on Earth), and this period is divided, in the Chlouvānem calendar, in fourteen mostly arbitrary months (asena, pl. asenai) which are grouped by season (demibuñjñasusah). Common years have 418 days; leap years have 419, with one year added at the end of the last month.

The month names reflect climatic conditions of those particular months in the Nīmbaṇḍhāra plain, the “heartlands” of the Chlouvānem civilization. Not all of the Inquisition, due to different climates and latitudes, has the same conditions — and the months are grouped in four “seasons”, corresponding to the temperate areas of the Northern hemisphere (about 90% of the population of the Inquisition is north of the Equator, and most areas in the Southern hemisphere do not have distinct seasons anyway). This is despite the Nīmbaṇḍhāra plain itself having mostly two seasons (and some parts of the “heartlands” even have no seasons, most notably the area around Līlasuṃghāṇa, which has a local “equatorial” microclimate despite being nearly 15º north of the Equator).

The four seasons the calendar is based on are autumn (kanami), winter (tandaikin), spring (tandayena) and summer (enaukam), in the order they appear in the year — these ones are defined by equinoxes and solstices and not by climate alone (even if the origins of their names, all Toyubeshian, are related to climate). Climatic seasons are totally not uniform across the Inquisition: even in the Nīmbaṇḍhāra plain, the two seasons (būṃṣoe or dry season and dašoe or rainy/monsoon season) have vastly different start/end dates and lengths in it. Some areas even define more than four seasons: in and around the metropolitan area of Cami (the most populated on the planet), five seasons are traditionally distinguished, with rain patterns being the defining factor (that area having a markedly wet humid subtropical climate).

→ See Chlouvānem lexicon § Seasons across the Inquisition for more.

The autumn equinox (kanampeiṃlalyā) is the first day of the year, and likewise the spring equinox (tandayempeiṃlalyā) is on the (functional) mid-point the year, being the first day of the eighth month — it is not the true mid-point because seasons are not equal: spring is the longest with 108 days, then autumn with 107, winter with 103, and summer with 100/101. Thus the first part of the year has 210 days while the second one has 208/209.
The winter solstice (tandaikyuñcehånna) is on the fifteenth day of the fourth month, while the summer solstice (enaukyuñcehånna) falls on the thirteenth day of the eleventh month. The solar months of the Chlouvānem calendar are:

No. Month Days Name meaning Notable dates (→ see also Holidays in the Inquisition)
1 Māltapārṇāvi 30 of the days of storage 1st day: (northern) autumn equinox; ranire nājaṣrān (Chlouvānem New Year)
2 Kanamiprātas 29 autumn wind
3 Pāṇḍalañši 30 white braid 4th day: hīmbajaṃšā
4 Kanamimaila 29 autumn water 15th day: (northern) winter solstice; camilalyājaṃšā
5 Murkāsena 31 black month 10th day: Day of the Inquisition
6 Būṃṣprātas 30 dry wind 17th day: Day of the Legions for Purity
7 Lalyāñaiṭa 30 night star 10th day: maivajaṃšā
8 Brausāsena 30 sacred month 1st day: (northern) spring equinox
23rd day: caṃkrajavyājaṃšā
9 Mailaheirah 30 “year”[1] of water
10 Ñaryāyāmyah 29 mountain fog
11 Bhaivyāvammi 30 of the oboes[2] 13th day: (northern) summer solstice
15th to 18th day: bhaivyāvāṣara
12 Īlāmyasena 29 hot month
13 Hælvyāsena 31 fruit month 4th day: kaili jaṃšā
28th day: Birthday of the Great Inquisitor (as of 3874 (642410)
14 Camirādhās 30/31 great green

As a comparison with the Western calendar used in most of the planet, the first day of Māltapārṇāvi is the one of the first four days (depending on leap years) of the twenty-first Western month; the first day of the Western year is the 21st±2 day of Murkāsena.

Leap days

Leap days are added based on a 39-year cycle, where the 7th year of the cycle is a leap year, and thereafter a leap day is added to every 8th year, thus to the 15th, 23rd, 31st, and 39th of each cycle.

Lunar months and "weeks"

The lunar element of the Chlouvānem calendar is important in marking the closest equivalent to a week. It should be noted that this division, formerly purely astronomical, is now mostly bureaucratic and does not correspond to astronomical values; therefore solar days and lunar days, as far as the calendar is concerned, are both equal. In the following section, all references to "the moon" refer to Hulyā (Cer. Ašeira), the greater of the two Calémerian moons.

A lunar month (hulyāsena) is a fixed 34-day division parallel to the fourteen solar months described above. Every lunar month is divided in lānicunih (pl. lānicuneyi), which is the "fixed" 32-hour (2812) bureaucratic lunar day (as opposed to ilēmpārṇam, the astronomical lunar day of variable length, which varies between 30 ½ and 33 Calemerian hours), which is equivalent to the solar day, and lānicuneyai are grouped in two periods called lānimpeɂila (pl. lānimpeɂilai), each one of 17 days, half of the lunar month. The lānimpeɂilai are the closest equivalent of a "week" in the Chlouvānem calendar; they are astronomically based on lunar phases, and are called respectively chlærlīltāvi (from new to full moon) and līleñchlæryāvi.

These divisions - the lānimpeɂilai - take the place of “weeks” for event schedules: the fifth and eleventh days of each lunar phase are half-rest days, while the sixth, twelfth, and seventeenth are full rest days; the first day of the first, fourth, seventh, and tenth lunar months are also full rest days.

Lunar months

Month names are often half-calques of the original Lällshag names, and names of animals and plants are the main root for most of them:

N. Lunar month name Meaning
1 ​ñaiṭāšarai Month of stars
2 dildhāmai Month of dildhai
3 tāryāṣṭri Month of red leopards
4 ēmīlyāvi Month of tigers
5 nāmñāṣṭri Month of nāmñyai
6 māruḍānis Month of snakes
7 maiyūjmai Birth of lotus flowers
8 bhārmāṣyam Month of lions
9 rarāyanim Month of rabbits
10 nehaušē Month of tales
11 prālṣmārai Month of prālṣam trees
12 nārdhāṣṇam Month of nārdhāṣai
Lunar days

Each lunar day has its own name, much like our days of the week. Out of all names, seven are of Chlouvānem origin, two are taken proper names of unknown origin but attested in the Lileṃsasarum, while all other ones are Lällshag[3].

chlærlīltāvi No. līleñchlæryāvi
yeicarašña 1 nåyidrašña
līšabganā 2 šunettanah
ñairḍṇauya 3 nambiṣārjāh
kahīlairyāṇa 4 talkiryāh
månayækṣah 5
månaleilē 6
šurājah 7 nāharemīm
larṣīnis 8 lalyarah
pādāltsis 9 payaħīlteh
nyūramyah 10 tulævašineh
yūnayækṣah 11
yūnaleilē 12
pulyatā 13 rateitā
naindā 14 yætiṣṭā
pænyukælyah 15 tåktrašña
chlamilairē 16 pudbhalairē
kælyaunænǣh 17

There are two strategies used in the Chlouvānem-timekeeping countries in order to realign both the true and bureaucratical lunar days and also the lunar year (408 days) with the solar one (418):

  • In the first case, every four lunar years an additional lunar day (which is always a rest day) is added after the last day of the last līleñchlæryāvi; this day is called lališlān (or, formally, lališire lānicunih - both meaning “new lānicunih”). This procedure, however, gets in the way of the following realignment:
In the second case, every 42 years in even cycles (see below) the last lunar phase skips its twelfth and thirteenth days (as this causes a full rest day to be erased, the eleventh day, normally a half-rest one, becomes a lone full rest day). This has the effect of making the last day of that lunar phase also the last day of both the lunar and the solar years — the exact difference between the lunar and solar year being about ~9.71 days, making a 408-day difference every 42 calendar years. Even cycles are those where the additional lunar day is added 10 times starting from the fourth year; odd cycles those where it is added 11 times starting from the second year.

The last time both years ended on the same day was in 3861 (640910), fifteen years ago.

Days, hours, and shorter times

The (solar) day (pārṇam) is the base measure of time, which is divided in 2812 (3210) hours (garaṇa) — note that there is a separate term for “day” as the part of the 28-hour day with daylight, namely chlærdhūs. One Calemerian day lasts about 35 hours on Earth.
These hours are divided in four groups called garaṃlāṇa, each one made of eight hours and corresponding to different times of the day. They are yartām (morning), bhraṃšai (afternoon), and prājamnā (evening), and lalyā (night) — they may be referred to either with these simple names or genitive + garaṇai (lalei garaṇai, yartāmi garaṇai, …).

The first hour of yartām - the morning - is the first one of the whole day (a stark contrast to the Western calendar, where the day begins at midnight and - traditionally - at dusk); every last hour of each garaṃlāṇa has a specific name, respectively lalla hånna (high[est] sun — colloquially just lalla), nīhenā (sunset), kutīkṣaire hånna (lowest sun — colloquially just kutīkṣayā), and ājva (dawn). For lalla and kutīkṣayā there are also the older terms - still used in some areas - chlærdaniāmita (halfpoint of the day) and lalyādaniāmita (halfpoint of the night) respectively.

Hour Name Hour Name
1 of the morning
first of the day
yartāmi lahīla 1 of the evening prājamnī lahīla
2 of the morning yartāmi hælinaika 2 of the evening prājamnī hælinaika
3 of the morning yartāmi pāmvende 3 of the evening prājamnī pāmvende
4 of the morning yartāmi nęltende 4 of the evening prājamnī nęltende
5 of the morning yartāmi šulkende 5 of the evening prājamnī šulkende
6 of the morning yartāmi tulūɂende 6 of the evening prājamnī tulūɂende
7 of the morning yartāmi chīcænde 7 of the evening prājamnī chīcænde
8 of the morning
Highest sun
yartāmi tītyende
lalla hånna
8 of the evening
Lowest sun
prājamnī tītyende
kutīkṣaire hånna
1 of the afternoon bhraṃšāyi lahīla 1 of the night lalei lahīla
2 of the afternoon bhraṃšāyi hælinaika 2 of the night lalei hælinaika
3 of the afternoon bhraṃšāyi pāmvende 3 of the night lalei pāmvende
4 of the afternoon bhraṃšāyi nęltende 4 of the night lalei nęltende
5 of the afternoon bhraṃšāyi šulkende 5 of the night lalei šulkende
6 of the afternoon bhraṃšāyi tulūɂende 6 of the night lalei tulūɂende
7 of the afternoon bhraṃšāyi chīcænde 7 of the night lalei chīcænde
8 of the afternoon
bhraṃšāyi tītyende
8 of the night
last of the day
lalei tītyende

The four garaṃlānai work roughly like the AM/PM system, thus e.g. hour 17 (1910) is normally called hour 3 of the evening.
Time zones, in all areas with the Chlouvānem timekeeping system, depend on the Eastern/Chlouvānem standard for longitudinal measure, which uses as its prime meridian the one of Līlasuṃghāṇa, capital of the Inquisition. It should be noted that, as the Western system uses the meridian of Mánébodin, capital of Ceria, as its prime one[4], in the case of two cities on the same meridian but using the two different standards, the one using the Eastern system is (in Chlouvānem time) 1612 railai (1810) and 8 namišenī behind - about 10 minutes and 56 seconds in time of Earth (this difference is not precisely solar but established by law between Eastern and Western countries - a single time zone ideally spans 11º15’).
In international contexts, the Chlouvānem time zones are depicted as being +53′40″ (+45′34″12) on the preceding Cerian time zone (for example the country of New Égélonía is in time zone CER+15 (geographically spanning more) while the Chlouvānem diocese of Bivarteloga just south of it is noted as being in time zone CER+14:53′40″10. In official contexts in the Inquisition (as well as in Brono, Fathan, and iKalurilut), Bivarteloga diocese is in time zone LIL+2, while New Égélonía is noted as being in time zone LIL+2:16′08″12.

Every hour is then divided (in an internationally agreed, Calémerian-wide, standard) in 60 (7210) timeframes called raila (pl. railai), each one of about 54.6805 seconds of Earth; in common use in the Inquisition they are most commonly grouped into three double dozens (hælmāmya, pl. -māmyai), each one of 20 (2410) railai.

The next division, the namišoe (pl. namišenī), is 1/4012 (1/4810) of a raila, therefore about 1.8986 seconds of Earth. Namišenī then follow the normal duodecimal subdivisions: 12 (namišeni) māmendvāṭ (pl. -vaḍai - about 0.1582 seconds of Earth), divided in 12 (namišeni) nihælendvāṭ (about 0.0131 seconds), divided in 12 (namišeni) tildhaindvāṭ (about 1.0987 milliseconds), and so on.

Expressing time in Chlouvānem

→ See Chlouvānem morphology § Declension of cardinal numbers for the declensions of numerals.

Time expressions in Chlouvānem are categorized as either continuous time (lunavyāṣa) or punctual time (tatimvyāṣa); continuous expressions are expressed with essive, accusative or translative case, while punctual time with either locative or ablative plus particles.

Continuous time is expressed with accusative singular in most cases, as there usually is a cardinal number, e.g. nęltemāmei railu yųlaute — I ate for 4012 railai. The main exception is where there's no specific time quantity, e.g. garaṇānu yųlaute — I ate for hours.

Punctual time uses the locative case where the intended meaning is "in a given moment", e.g. 3873-e ajāƾilbādhye ē — (s)he/it was in Ajāƾilbādhi in 3873 (642310). The locative form is thus used for:

  • years — 3874-e (in 3874 (642410))
  • solar and lunar months — māltapārṇāvye, tāryāṣṭrye
  • lānimpeɂilai — chlærlīltāvye / līleñchlæryāvye
  • days — 9-e brausāseni (on the 9th of Brausāsena), lalla šurāje "coming/next Šurājah"
  • festivities (see Chlouvānem Inquisition § Holidays for a list of them)bhaivyāvāṣare (during Bhaivyāvāṣara)
  • hours — bhraṃšāyi 3-e (at 3 in the afternoon)
  • seasons — enaukaṃrye (in summer)

Seasons are a partial exception, because if the meaning is "throughout the season", then the accusative is used, e.g. enaukamu throughout the summer", "all summer long".

More time expressions formed with particles:

Particle Case Meaning Example
lut Ablative ago nęlcų heirų lut four years ago
Essive for/since nęlcą heiręs lut for four years
sām Ablative in ... time
(at the end of a certain period of time)
nęlcų heirų sām in four years, four years from now
šurājų sām by Šurājah
Essive in
(within, during a certain period of time)
nęlcą heiręs sām for the coming four years, until four years from now
Translative for (a future time), until nęltin heiran sām for the coming four years, until four years from now
nin Ablative after nęlcų heirų nin after four years
šut Ablative before nęlcų heirų šut four years before
bīs Essive (both nouns) between; from ... until šurājęs nyūramyęs bīs between Šurājah and Nyūramiah

Qualifying verbs or adverbs usually used with time expressions:

  • lalla "coming, next"
    • pimliven (verb pimlulke) "coming, next" (rare)
  • biselīsa (verb bislulke) "past, last, previous"
  • yaiva "every"
    • Formal usage prescribes yaiva to be inflected with the needed case, but in practice this is rarely done, so that e.g. yaive šurāje and yaiva šurāje "every Šurājah" are interchangeable.
  • TIME + ADVERBIAL NUM. "once/twice/thrice per month/day...", e.g. āsene māgdani "twice a month"[5]

Adverbs of time

  • ṣubhāveṣi "soon" (formal)
  • halše "soon" (more colloquial)
    • saṃhalše "sooner" (and saṃhalše gu mbu "sooner or later" (lit. "sooner or not"))
  • væse "while"
tamvæse "meanwhile"
  • pritiṃsā "recently"
  • mådviṣe "before"
  • kaminæne "now"
  • ħærviṣe "after"
  • peimavyāṣe "right now" (also, very colloquially, kaminæñchi (contraction of kaminæne chi))
  • emiya "now" (more formal than kaminæne, especially used in comparisons with the following ones)
  • utiya "then, at that time" (not so distant; in the last year)
  • ātiya "then, at that time" (long ago; more than a year)
  • lære "yesterday"
    • paṣlære "the day before yesterday"
  • amyære "today"
  • menire "tomorrow"
    • paṣmenire "the day after tomorrow"
  • lætmiya "whenever, anytime"
  • viṣmiya "sometime else"
    • emibe lætmiya ... viṣmiya ... "now ..., now ..."
  • guviṣmiya "never else"
  • All adverbial numerals (e.g. māgemibe, māgdani, māmpāmvi…)

Adverbs of frequency:

  • yaivmiya "always, everytime"
tamine "forever, eternally"
  • āndīdiye "usually, habitually"
  • laibe "often"
  • soramiya "sometime(s), somewhen"
  • lājhęe "rarely"
  • gumiya "never"

Adverbial locutions of frequency: gumiya mūji "almost never", taili lājhęe "very rarely", nålemi soramiya "a few times, occasionally", taili laibe "very often". maibu "enough" may be used also in a temporal sense.

Date format

The typical date format, in Chlouvānem, is YMD, expressed as thus:

year_number-ORDINAL.GENITIVE. (less commonly year_number-ORDINAL. heiri) : month-GENITIVE. day_number-ORDINAL.
ex.: pāmvi tildhā tītinihælmāmyāvælkalahīli : mailaheiri vældinde

When written using numbers, it is typically written as follows (but read as above):

year_number : day_number. month-DIRECT.
ex.: 3871, Ɛ mailaheirah

The head of formal letters uses the first format (though written with numbers) and, obligatorily, the name of the day, e.g. 3871-i mailaheiri Ɛ-de : līšabganā.

Common abbreviations (using the same example date as above) include e.g. 3871-4-Ɛ, 3871h4aƐp (with h standing for heirah (year), a for asena (month), and p for parṇām (day)), lšb: 3871-4-Ɛ (the most common in short format dates, i.e. like the first but including the day), or even Ch2: 3871-4-Ɛ (as līšabganā is the second day of chlærlīltāvi).

Telling the time

Times are expressed in a format such as Bh 4.30, representing, in this example, four and a half hour (garaṇa) in the afternoon (note that the format is always duodecimal; 4.30 is four hours and thirty-six10 minutes). Unlike direct naming of hours, telling the time uses, in some forms, the cardinal numeral.
Note that in many official uses the 2812-hour format is used, so that L 3.13 is written as 23.13 (base 12, i.e. base 10 27:15) instead.

The question for asking the time is either yanūḍat garaṇa dam (vi)? (*how many hour is it?) or garaṇa mæn yananū dam (vi)? (talking about the hour, which [one] is it?).

The simplest way to tell the time is simply reading the number of hours and the number of railai alone, followed by the locative case of the time period (8-hour division, garaṃlāṇa), and vi, the 3SG of "to be", which is usually always stated:

  • Bh 4.1ᘔnęlte hælmāmitålda bhraṃšāye vi (it's four and twenty-two10 (four and one dozen plus ten) in the afternoon).
  • L 2.57dani šulkmāmichīka lalye vi (it's two and sixty-seven10 (two and five dozens plus seven) in the night).

This format is, however, rarely used, mainly when reading legal texts or giving second-hand reports (therefore it's extremely common in news reports).

The main system used takes three main reference points - .00, .20, and .40 - dividing therefore the hour in three equal parts of 2012 railai, and expresses time relative to those three. The half hour (.30) is additionally used as a secondary reference point:

  • Bh 2.00dani bhraṃšāye vi (it's two in the afternoon)
  • Bh 2.20dani bhraṃšāye pāmvendvāṭ (no) vi (it's two in the afternoon and one third)
  • Bh 2.30vālpāmvya bhraṃšāye vi (it's 2½ in the afternoon) or less commonly dani bhraṃšāye hælinaivāṭ (no) vi (it's two in the afternoon and half)
  • Bh 2.40 — pāmvyå bhraṃšāye pāmvendvāṭ vi (it's one third to three in the afternoon) or less commonly dani bhraṃšāye dani pāmvendvāṭ (no) vi (it's two in the afternoon and two thirds)

Time is usually additive and not subtractive, except for .40 (as in the previous example), .46, .50, and .56 (respectively ¼, 1012, and 6 minutes before the next hour). Subtractive time is, as expected, expressed by the dative case of the next hour:

  • Bh 2.46pamvyå bhraṃšāye māmivælka vi (it's sixteen12 to three in the afternoon)
  • Bh 2.50pamvyå bhraṃšāye māmei vi (it's twelve to three in the afternoon)
  • Bh 2.56pamvyå bhraṃšāye tulūɂa vi (it's six to three in the afternoon)

For all other cases, the time is told as "ORDINAL IN LOCATIVE CASE OF THE HOUR, GARAṂLĀṆA IN GENITIVE CASE, ORDINAL OF THE ELAPSED THIRD OF HOUR (except for .01 to .1Ɛ) and NUMBER OF RAILAI". Note that, however, in most cases Chlouvānem people approximate to the nearest six railai (e.g. .24 is told as if it were .26):

  • Bh 2.1Ɛdaniendye bhraṃšāyi māmivælden vi (it's twenty-three10 (two and one dozen plus eleven) in the second of the afternoon)
  • Bh 2.35daniendye bhraṃšāyi lahīla māmišulka (no) vi (it's the first [third of hour] and seventeen10 (one dozen plus five) in the second of the afternoon)
  • Bh 2.48daniendye bhraṃšāyi hælinaika tītya (no) vi (it's the second [third of hour] and eight in the second of the afternoon)

The word raila is usually never stated if the hour number is present; if it is implied, then raila (always in the singular, as it's preceded by a numeral) must be stated - note also the question about minutes, not the hour:

yanūḍat raila dam? — *How many minutes is it?
pamihælī raila vi. — Fifteen10.

When hours are inside a punctual time expression, the head of the phrase (the hour in .00 and .30; the number of minutes or pamvendvāṭ otherwise) is put in the locative case, e.g. Bh 4.07-e yahīte lā ē "at 4.07 of the afternoon, (s)he was reading” is read as nęltendye bhraṃšāyi chīke yahīte lā ē “at seven [railai] in the fourth [hour] of the afternoon, (s)he was reading”.


  1. ^ The word heirah used to mean both “year” (its only modern meaning) and “spring”.
  2. ^ After the Bhaivyāvāṣara, lit. “night(s) of oboes”, the most important religious festival of the Yunyalīlta.
  3. ^ The four -leilē days are half-calques, leilē being the Chlouvānem word for "candle", not of Lällshag origin. mån, joune, llashi, and ałane, also seen in the days immediately preceding them, are the numbers from 1 to 4 in Lällshag.
  4. ^ The difference between the two prime meridians is 143º35′11.6586″.
  5. ^ Note that āsena alone always refers to the solar month. Chlouvānem people rarely use lunar months as reference points, only lunar phases.