Each of the "Mason" calendars begin with the word, Anno. In the Latin language, Anno means In the Year of. The English word, annual, is derived from the Latin word, anno. C.E. means Common Era, (Christians sometimes call it the Christian Era) B.C.E. or B.C. means Before Common Era
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A Masonic calendar is based upon the date of an event or a beginning. Craft Masons and different appendant bodies within Freemasonry utilize different Masonic calendars to celebrate an historical inception date such as the creation of the world or an historical event specific to that Masonic order or body. These dates are used upon official Freemason documents. The historical dates are symbolic of new beginnings, and should not be misconstrued as Freemasons believing that there was a Masonic lodge in the Garden of Eden. Symbolically, they connect the creation of physical light in the universe with the birth of Masonic spiritual and intellectual light in the candidate. The only idea intended to be conveyed is that the principles of Freemasonry are as old as the existence of the world. It is the spirit of the institution of Freemasonry which brings a candidate from intellectual darkness to intellectual light.