This article is about the lunar Hijri calendar. For the solar calendar whose first year is fixed to the Hijra, see Solar Hijri calendar. 12 months in a year of 354 or 355 days. It is also used islamic names and their meanings pdf Muslims to determine the proper days of Islamic holidays and rituals, such as the annual period of fasting and the proper time for the pilgrimage to Mecca.
The Islamic calendar employs the Hijri era whose epoch was retrospectively established as the Islamic New Year of AD 622. The current Islamic year is 1439 AH. In the Gregorian calendar, 1439 AH runs from approximately 21 September 2017 to 10 September 2018. For Central Arabia, especially Mecca, there is a lack of epigraphical evidence but details are found in the writings of Muslim authors of the Abbasid era.
Inscriptions of the ancient South Arabian calendars reveal the use of a number of local calendars. At least some of these South Arabian calendars followed the lunisolar system.
Both al-Biruni and al-Mas’udi suggest that the Ancient Arabs used the same month names as the Muslims, though they also record other month names used by the pre-Islamic Arabs. Information about the forbidden months is also found in the writings of Procopius, where he describes an armistice with the Eastern Arabs of the Lakhmid al-Mundhir which happened in the summer of 541 AD.
However, Muslim historians do not link these months to a particular season. The Qur’an links the four forbidden months with Nasī’, a word that literally means “postponement”. Different interpretations of the concept of Nasī’ have been proposed. Some scholars, both Muslim and Western, maintain that the pre-Islamic calendar used in Central Arabia was a purely lunar calendar similar to the modern Islamic calendar.