Common Era

by Staff Writer - B. Shaughnessy | June 10, 2012

The term CE stands for Common Era and is a component of the Common Era date designation system. The Common Era system is utilized with the Gregorian calendar, with CE serving the same purpose as AD (Anno Domini or In the year of the Lord).

In the 6th century, a monk named Dionysius Exiguus developed the Common Era designation system. The Common Era designation system utilizes CE in place of AD and BCE in place of BC (Before Christ). Numerically, the Common Era System is equivalent to the Christian designations of AD and BC. Implementation of the Common Era system was slow going until the mid-19th century. During this time, Jewish scholars first popularized the use of the Common Era system. From this point forward, use of the Common Era system increased within scientific communities. Widespread use of the Common Era system could be seen during the latter half of the 20th century. With Gregorian calendar becoming the standard calendar system of the world, the Common Era system has allowed calendar systems to function on a secular level.

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