On the first day of the month of Mäskäräm a celebration of the beginning of the new year is held.
The Ethiopian new year is called Enkutatash in the Amharic language spoken in Ethiopia.
It occurs on September 11 (or September 12 during leap years) in the Gregorian calendar.
The Ethiopian calendar is based on the Coptic calendar.
It has twelve months plus five epagomenal days.
Every four years, there is an additional epagomenal day, just like in the Julian calendar.
Such years are called leap years.
During these years, Enkutatash is celebrated a day later that usual in the Gregorian calendar.
The word “Enkutatash” can be translated literally as “gift of jewels”.
It is the reference to the jewels which the Queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon during her visit.
When she returned to her land, her chiefs gifted her with jewels to replenish her treasury.
Enkutatash also marks the end of the rainy season and beginning of spring.