People's Republic of China uses the Gregorian calendar
for civil purposes, a special Chinese calendar is used
for determining festivals.
Although the yin-yang
li has been continuously employed by the Chinese,
foreign calendars were introduced to the Chinese, the
Hindu calendar, for instance, during the T'ang (Tang)
dynasty (618-907), and were once used concurrently
with the native calendar. This situation also held
true for the Muslim calendar, which was introduced
during the YŁan dynasty (1206-1368). The Gregorian
calendar was taken to China by Jesuit missionaries in
1582, the very year that it was first used by
Europeans. Not until 1912, after the general public
adopted the Gregorian calendar, did the yin-yang li
lose its primary importance.
(pre-Copernican) astronomical theories were introduced
to China by Jesuit missionaries in the seventeenth
century. Gradually, more modern Western concepts
became known. Following the revolution of 1911, the
traditional practice of counting years from the
accession of an emperor was abolished.