Almanacs then and now
MetadataShow full item record
CTA. 2003. Almanacs then and now. Spore 104. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/47884
Internet URL: http://spore.cta.int/images/stories/pdf/old/spore104.pdf
Almanacs, or yearly calendars, have been used by farmers and others dependent on natural cycles for thousands of years.
Almanacs, or yearly calendars, have been used by farmers and others dependent on natural cycles for thousands of years. The first versions, developed in what is now called the Near East, and in Egypt and Ethiopia, were notched sticks for measuring astrological changes and seasons. Printed versions appeared in Europe in the 1480s, America in 1639: the African-American Benjamin Banneker's Almanac, published in 1791, was soon followed by the Farmer's Almanac, still published today. Gradually, almanacs grew into diaries full of tips on the best day to plant out seedlings, to harvest fruit, to check the livestock - a rich blend of scientific data and rural wisdom. A leading contemporary almanac - not emulated elsewhere in ACP countries - is the Tropical Farmers Almanac, covering the Caribbean. It has less in the way of astrology than its predecessors, but is equally full of truisms (