Why are there 24 hours in a day and 60 minutes in an hour?

Greetings my dear friends and subscribers ✌



Many people would probably like to have 25 or even 30 hours in a day, and 100 minutes in an hour. After all, then we could get a lot more done! But historically, there are 24 hours in a day, and 60 minutes in an hour (as well as seconds in a minute). And the two ancient civilizations - Egypt and Mesopotamia - are to blame for this.

The meaning of time designations is simple: people need to synchronize joint actions. Otherwise, how can they arrange to meet at an agreed place? What should we tie ourselves to? Sometimes you can say "with the first cocks crowing" or "at dawn", but what to do if none of the neighbors keep cocks or the meeting is scheduled when the sun has long risen?

It was in ancient Egypt that the division of the day by hours began to be widely used, and counting to 12 (by the number of phalanges of the fingers, except the thumb) was considered the basic calculus. Each finger had three phalanges, making a total of 12. Days were divided into day and night, 12 hours in day and 12 hours in night were counted.

In the other ancient civilization, Mesopotamia (or the ancient Sumerians), for unknown reasons, the number 60 was highly respected and used to count to 60 to solve mathematical problems. Later, the scientists of Ancient Greece used the experience of their colleagues and invented to set geographical coordinates on the basis of the same number. Thus 360 degrees appeared. Each degree contained 60 "minutes" (from the Latin minutae - small, small part), and each minute contained 60 "seconds" (from the Latin secundae - second, i.e. part, even smaller than the minute).

For a long time, mankind had enough 24 hours to indicate the time, but when there appeared mechanisms allowing to measure more precise intervals of time, then the concept of minutes and seconds was borrowed from geography.


Thank you all for your attention to my publications, I hope you liked it, come again. 

Sincerely Eduard! 


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