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The consuls' terms of office were not always a modern calendar year, but ordinary consuls were elected or appointed annually.The traditional list of Roman consuls used by the Romans to date their years began in 509 Their exact nature is uncertain, although he is thought to have begun the custom of publishing the calendar in advance of the month, depriving the priests of some of their power but allowing for a more consistent calendar for official business.The revised calendar remaining slightly longer than the solar year, the date of Easter shifted far enough away from the vernal equinox that Pope Gregory XIII ordered its adjustment in the 16th century.
These months ran for 38 nundinal cycles, each forming a kind of eight (i.e., "nine") day week ended by religious rituals and a public market.
For superstitious reasons, such intercalation occurred within the month of February even after it was no longer considered the last month.
After the establishment of the Roman Republic, years began to be dated by consulships and control over intercalation was granted to the pontifices, who eventually abused their power by lengthening years controlled by their political allies and shortening the years in their rivals' terms of office.
Months were employed secondarily and haphazardly, with some counted as 20 days and others as 35 or more.
had 31 days each; all the other months had 29 days except February, which had 28 days for three years and then 29 every fourth year.
Its main lines involved the insertion of ten additional days throughout the calendar and regular intercalation of a single leap day every fourth year in order to bring the Roman calendar into close agreement with the solar year. After Antony's defeat at Actium, Augustus assumed control of Rome and, finding the priests had (owing to their inclusive counting) been intercalating every third year instead of every fourth, suspended the addition of leap days to the calendar for a number of decades until its proper position had been restored.