Ward's Book of Days.

Pages of interesting anniversaries.

What happened on this day in history.


On this day in history, every year is the beginning of the fiscal year.

Why does the tax year start on April 6th?  Why not on January 1st?  

The original fiscal, or state, year began on 25th March, Lady Day, the feast of the appearance of the Angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary that is the conception of Christ, the natural start to the Christian year.  

In the 16th Century, it was discovered that there was an inaccuracy in the Roman Calendar, which has been in force since the days of Julius Caesar. Astronomers ascertained that the year lasted slightly less than the statutory 365 days plus one extra day in the leap year and that consequently the calendar year was out of step with real time by a matter of eleven days. To rectify matters, Pope Gregory XIII instituted a new calendar in which the leap year was not used in Centennial years except if they were quatrocentenial years except if they were duomillenial years.  

This new calendar was introduced in Great Britain in 1752, when 11 days were removed from the month of September.  

In order to keep the Fiscal year of the same length, the tax year’s opening day was shifted to 6th April in order to maintain a 365 day year. Since 1752, all Fiscal years have started on  6th April.

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