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February 4 is the beginning of spring, when ecliptic longitude is at 315 degrees. However, if you look at a current readout of ecliptic longitude you realize that some dates on the calendar need updating for ecliptic precession.

Here are the Xia calendar dates in agreement with 2009 astronomy, based on calculations for 18:00 (6 pm). That is because Chinese astronomers typically made observations at sundown.

Ecliptic Longitude Date Designation
315 February 4 Beginning of spring
330 February 18 Rains
345 March 5 Awakening insects
360 March 20 The vernal equinox occurs 11:44 UTC
15 April 5 Clear brightness
45 May 5 Grain rice
60 May 21 Small harvest
75 June 5 Seed planting
90 June 21 The summer solstice occurs 0:45 UTC
105 July 7 Minor heat — aphelion on July 6, 02:00 UTC
120 July 23 Major heat
135 August 7 Beginning of autumn (Chinese seasons)
150 August 23 Limit of heat
165 Sept 7 White dew
180 Sept 23 Central division of autum (Chinese seasons) — autumnal equinox occurs at 21:18 UTC on Sept 22
195 Oct 8 Cold dew
210 Oct 23 Descent of frost
225 Nov 7 Start of winter (Chinese seasons)
240 Nov 22 Minor snow
255 Dec 7 Major snow
270 Dec 22 Winter extreme (Chinese seasons)– solstice occurs 17:47 UTC on Dec 21
285 Jan 5 Minor cold — perhelion15:00 UTC on Jan 4
300 Jan 20 Major cold

Jieqi

The jieqi should also follow the astronomical year, as they are the “solar nodes.” Here is a list of the jieqi according to 2009 astronomical calculations for 18:00 (6 pm).

Ecliptic Longitude Chinese Month Calendar Date Western Star Marker (Cardinal Direction)
330 1 Feb 18
360 2 March 20 Pisces
30 3 April 20
60 4 May 21
90 5 June 21 Taurus
120 6 July 23
150 7 August 23
180 8 Sept 23 Virgo
210 9 Oct 23
240 10 Nov 22
270 11 Dec 22 Sagittarius
300 12 Jan 20
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