The Bahá’í calendar, technically called the Badi calendar, is a solar calendar of 365 days, or 366 days in leap years. It consists of 19 months having 19 days each. The remaining four days (or five in leap years) make up an intercalary period called Ayyám-i-Há which is placed between the 18th and 19th months. A seven-day week is used. The months are named after attributes of God, as are the days of the week. Although not much referenced at the present time, cycles of 19 years and 361 years are also identified within the Badi calendar.
As in the Jewish and Islamic calendars, the Bahá’í day begins at sunset. The year begins on the vernal equinox (currently this is fixed as March 21). Eleven holy days are commemorated in the course of the year, nine of which are designated as days on which work should be suspended. With the exception of Naw-Rúz, the first day of the year, all of these holy days are connected with the lives of the Báb, Bahá’u’lláh, and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.
The Badi calendar was created during the ministry of the Báb and later confirmed by Bahá’u’lláh, who specified a few details that the Báb had left open. In particular, the timing of the intercalary days (Ayyám-i-Há) had not been specified. Bahá’u’lláh placed this celebration between the 18th and 19th months.
The Badi calendar consists of 19 months of 19 days, plus four intercalary days (five in leap years). Because it is a solar calendar like the Gregorian calendar and observes the same leap years, a given day in the Badi calendar falls on the same day of the Gregorian calendar every year. The months of the Badi calendar are as follows:
|Arabic Name||Arabic Script||English Translation||Gregorian Dates||Month Number|
|Bahá’||بهاء||Splendour||21 March - 8 April||1|
|Jalál||جلال||Glory||9 April - 27 April||2|
|Jamál||جمال||Beauty||28 April - 16 May||3|
|‘Aẓamat||عظمة||Grandeur||17 May - 4 June||4|
|Núr||نور||Light||5 June - 23 June||5|
|Raḥmat||رحمة||Mercy||24 June - 12 July||6|
|Kalimát||كلمات||Words||13 July - 31 July||7|
|Kamál||كمال||Perfection||1 August - 19 August||8|
|Asmá’||اسماء||Names||20 August - 7 September||9|
|‘Izzat||عزة||Might||8 September - 26 September||10|
|Mashíyyat||مشية||Will||27 September - 15 October||11|
|‘Ilm||علم||Knowledge||16 October - 3 November||12|
|Qudrat||قدرة||Power||4 November - 22 November||13|
|Qawl||قول||Speech||23 November - 11 December||14|
|Masá’il||مسائل||Questions||12 December - 30 December||15|
|Sharaf||شرف||Honour||31 December - 18 January||16|
|Sulṭán||سلطان||Sovereignty||19 January - 6 February||17|
|Mulk||ملك||Dominion||7 February - 25 February||18|
|Ayyám-i-Há’||ايام الهاء||Intercalary Days||26 February - 1 March||–|
|‘Alá’||علاء||Loftiness||2 March - 20 March (Month of fasting)||19|
Certain days in the Baha'i calendar are set aside to be observed as holy days; work may or may not be suspended as well. For the most part, these Holy days are celebrations and commemorations of important events in the lives of the central figures of the Baha'i Faith, such as the festival of Riḍván, which commemorates Bahá’u’lláh's Declaration of His Mission to certain of His most trusted disciples. Certain other days, such as Naw-Rúz, have a general spiritual character but do not commemorate a specific event in history. The table below list the holy days as well as other significant observances that occur every year.
|Name||Gregorian dates||Work suspended|
|Naw-Rúz (Bahá’í New Year)||March 21||yes|
|First day of Riḍván||April 21||yes|
|Ninth day of Riḍván||April 29||yes|
|Twelfth day of Riḍván||May 2||yes|
|Declaration of the Báb||May 23||yes|
|Ascension of Bahá’u’lláh||May 29||yes|
|Martyrdom of the Báb||July 9||yes|
|Birth of the Báb||October 20||yes|
|Birth of Bahá’u’lláh||November 12||yes|
|Day of the Covenant||November 26||no|
|Ascension of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá||November 28||no|
|Ayyám-i-Há||February 26–March 1 (4 or 5 days)||no|
|Month of fasting||March 2–20||no|
The last two are not holy days but periods of special observance.
- Tables adapted from Bahá’í calendar.