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Manual Reference Pages  -  DATETIME::CALENDAR::JAPANESE (3)

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DateTime::Calendar::Japanese - DateTime Extension for Traditional Japanese Calendars



  use DateTime::Calendar::Japanese;

  # Construct a DT::C::Japanese object using the Chinese hexagecimal
  # cycle system
  my $dt = DateTime::Calendar::Japanese->new(
    cycle        => $cycle,
    cycle_year   => $cycle_year,
    month        => $month,
    leap_month   => $leap_month,
    day          => $day,
    hour         => $hour,
    hour_quarter => $hour_quarter

  # Construct a DT::C::Japanese object using the era system
  use DateTime::Calendar::Japanese::Era qw(HEISEI);
  my $dt = DateTime::Calendar::Japanese->new(
    era_name     => HEISEI,
    era_year     => $era_year,
    month        => $month,
    leap_month   => $leap_month,
    day          => $day,
    hour         => $hour,
    hour_quarter => $hour_quarter

  $cycle          = $dt->cycle;
  $cycle_year     = $dt->cycle_year;
  $era            = $dt->era;   # era object
  $era_name       = $dt->era_name;
  $era_year       = $dt->era_year;
  $month          = $dt->month;
  $leap_month     = $dt->leap_month;
  $day            = $dt->day;
  $hour           = $dt->hour;
  $canonical_hour = $dt->canonical_hour
  $hour_quarter   = $dt->hour_quarter;


This module implements the traditional Japanese Calendar, which was used from circa 692 A.D. to 1867 A.D. The traditional Japanese Calendar is a lunisolar calendar based on the Chinese Calendar, and therefore this module may *not* be used for handling or formatting modern Japanese calendars which are Gregorian Calendars with a twist. Please use DateTime::Format::Japanese for that purpose.

On top of the lunisolar calendar, this module implements a simple time system used in the Edo period, which is a type of temporal hour system, based on sunrise and sunset.



This module is based on DateTime::Calendar::Chinese, which in turn is based on positions of the Moon and the Sun. Calculations of this sort is definitely not Perl’s forte, and therefore this module is *very* slow.

Help is much appreciated to rectify this :)


Note that for each of these calendars there exist numerous different versions/revisions. The Japanese Calendar has at least 6 different revisions.

The Japanese Calendar that is implemented here uses the algorithm described in the book Calendrical Computations [1], which presumably describes the latest incarnation of these calendars.


Even though this module can handle modern dates, note that this module creates dates in the *traditional* calendar, NOT the modern gregorian calendar used in Japane since the Meiji era. Yet, we must honor the gregorian date in which an era started or ended. This means that the era year calculations could be off from what you’d expect on a modern calendar.

For example, the Heisei era starts on 08 Jan 1989 (Gregorian), so in a modern calendar you would expect the rest of year 1989 to be Heisei 1. However, the Chinese New Year happens to fall on 06 Feb 1989. Thus this module would see that and increment the era year by one on that date.

If you want to express modern Japanese calendars, you will need to use DateTime::Format::Japanese module on the vanilla DateTime object. (As of this writing DateTime::Format::Japanese is in alpha release. Use at your own peril)


The time component is based on the little that I already knew about the traditional Japanese time system and numerous resources available on the net.

As for the Japanese time system, not much detail was available to me. I searched in various resources on the net and used a combined alogorithm (see REFERENCES) to produce what seemed logical (and simple enough for me) to emulate the time system implemented in this module is from the one used during the Edo period (1600’s - 1800’s).

If there are any corrections, please let me know.

Also note that this module Currently assumes that the sunrise/sunset hours are calculated based on Tokyo latitude/longitude.


The time system that is implemented in this module is the time system used in the Edo era, during the time of the Tokugawa shogunate (1603 - 1867).

This time system is completely unlike the ones we are used in the modern world, mainly in that the notion of an hour changes from season to season. The days were divided in to two parts, from sunrise to sunset, and from sunset to sunrise. Each of these parts were then divided into 6 equal parts.

This also means that an hour has a different length depending on the season, and it even differs between day and night. However, for those people with no watches or clocks, it’s sometimes more convenient because the position of the sun directly corelates to the time of the day.

Even more complicated to us is the fact that Japanese hours have a slightly complex numbering scheume. The hours do not start from 1. Instead, the hour that starts with the sunrise is hour 6, then 5, 4, and then 9, all the way back to 6. Each of these hours also have a corresponding name, which is based on the Chinese Zodiac.

  | Hour | Zodiac  |
  |   6  | Hare    | <-- Sunrise ---
  ------------------               |
  |   5  | Dragon  |               |
  ------------------               |
  |   4  | Snake   |               |
  ------------------               |---- Day
  |   9  | Horse   |               |
  ------------------               |
  |   8  | Sheep   |               |
  ------------------               |
  |   7  | Monkey  |----------------
  |   6  | Fowl    | <-- Sunset ----
  ------------------               |
  |   5  | Dog     |               |
  ------------------               |
  |   4  | Pig     |               |
  ------------------               |---- Night
  |   9  | Rat     |               |
  ------------------               |
  |   8  | Ox      |               |
  ------------------               |
  |   7  | Tiger   |----------------

These names are used standalone or sometimes interchangeably. For example, ne no koku literary means the hour of hare, but you can also say ake mutsu which means morning 6.

For computational purposes, DateTime::Calendar::Japanese will number the hours 1 to 12. (You can get the canonical representation by using the canonical_hour() method)

Each hour is further broken up in 4 parts, which is combined with the hour notation to express a more precise time, for example:

  hour of Ox, 3rd quarter (around 3 a.m.)



There are two forms to the constructor. One form accepts era and era_year to define the year, and the other accepts cycle and cycle_year. The rest of the parameters are the same, and they are: month, leap_month, day, hour, hour_quarter.

  use DateTime::Calendar::Japanese;
  use DateTime::Calendar::Japanese::Era qw(TAIKA);
  my $dt = DateTime::Calendar::Japanese->new(
    era          => TAIKA,
    era_year     => 1,
    month        => 7,
    day          => 25,
    hour         => 4,
    hour_quarter => 3

  # DateTime::Calendar::Chinese style
  my $dt = DateTime::Calendar::Japanese->new(
    cycle        => 78,
    cycle_year   => 20,
    month        => 3,
    day          => 4,
    hour         => 4,
    hour_quarter => 3

See the documentation for DateTime::Calendar::Chinese for the semantics of cycle and cycle_year




These constructors are exactly the same as those in DateTime::Calendar::Chinese


Sets DateTime components.


Returns the current UTC Rata Die days, seconds, and nanoseconds as a three element list. This exists primarily to allow other calendar modules to create objects based on the values provided by this object.


Returns the current cycle. See DateTime::Calendar::Chinese


Returns the current cycle_year. See DateTime::Calendar::Chinese


Returns the DateTime::Calendar::Japanese::Era object associated with this calendar.


Returns the name (id) of the DateTime::Calendar::Japanese::Era object associated with this calendar.


Returns the number of years in the current era, as calculated by the traditional lunisolar calendar. Note that calculations will be different from those based on the modern calendar, as the date of New Year (which is when era years are incremented) differ from modern calendars. For example, based on the traditional calendar, SHOUWA3 (1926 - 1989) had only 63 years, not 64. See CAVEATS


Returns the hour, based on the traditional Japanese time system. The hours are encoded from 1 to 12 to uniquely qulaify them. However, you can get the canonical hour by using the canonical_hour() method

1 is the time of sunrise, somewhere around 5am to 6am, depending on the time of the year (This means that hour 12 on a given date is actually BEFORE hour 1)


Returns the canonical hour, based on the numbering system described in the above section, which counts from 9 to 4, and back to 9.


Returns the quarter in the current hour (1 to 4).


Copyright (c) 2004-2007 Daisuke Maki <<gt>


This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.



  [1] Edward M. Reingold, Nachum Dershowitz
      "Calendrical Calculations (Millenium Edition)", 2nd ed.
       Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK 2002



DateTime DateTime::Set DateTime::Span DateTime::Calendar::Chinese DateTime::Calendar::Japanese::Era DateTime::Event::Sunrise
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