Before We Had Zero

In the fifth century, an Indian mathematician/accountant Gupta was the first person to understand the concept of zero as being a number.  He analyzed debts that people incurred and he developed credits and debits and a balance between them where the person did not owe any more money, which became zero.  He actually made a symbol for this zero, and he created rules so people could add and subtract using zero.

Jesus was not born in the year zero, however Christ’s birth became the single defining moment for how time should be perceived.  The Jews had a calendar that went all the way back to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden and the Romans tracked time according to the Emperor that was in charge, as in the fourth year of Nero.  Eventually Emperor Constantine changed the faith of the Roman religion to Christianity.  Christians did not like the way Romans tracked time and they thought that Jesus would be a good starting point for time.  A Scythian monk in the 6th century named Dionysius let the year 1 AD Anno Domini “in the year of the Lord” start one week after what he believed to be Jesus’ birthday.  But Dionysius’ calculations were wrong.

People often get excited about the Super Bowl and some people only watch the game to see the new commercials, and since ad is short for advertisement I get all the bonus points.

Written for 1/26/19 Linda G. Hill’s ‘Life in progress’ Stream of Consciousness Saturday where the prompt is “ad/add/AD”.

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