Calculating Easter

Category: Formulas | [Item URL]

Easter is one of the most difficult holidays to calculate. Several years ago, a Web site had a contest to see who could come up with the best formula to calculate the date of Easter for any year. Here's one of the formulas submitted (it assumes that cell A1 contains a year):

=DOLLAR(("4/"&A1)/7+MOD(19*MOD(A1,19)-7,30)*14%,)*7-6

Just for fun, I calculated the date of Easter for 300 years from 1900 through 2199. Then I created a pivot table, and grouped the dates by day. And then, a pivot chart:

During this 300-year period, the most common date for Easter is March 31 (it occurs 13 times on that data). The least common is March 24 (only one occurrence). I also learned that the next time Easter falls on April Fool's Day will be in 2018.


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