What with the world due to end last week, Friday December 21 was a pretty big deal in the scheme of things.
So didn't we feel silly on December 22 as we sheepishly crawled out of our underground bunkers, took off our tinfoil hats and got on with, well, living.
However, it looks like those pessimistic Mayans may have been a couple of days out on their calculations - for the apocalypse could be occurring on Christmas Eve.
The Mayan calendar's 14th baktun may not be until December 24
Yep, better open those presents early, for German researcher Nikoali Grube tells Spiegel Online that matching up modern calendars with Mayan predictions is not an exact science.
Grube, who is an expert on the interpretation of Mayan artefacts, says the end of the calendar's 14th baktun may not actually be until December 24.
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Nevertheless, Grube emphasizes that whatever the exact date, the end of the baktun -- a period of time lasting 144,000 days -- represents the end of a era, not the end of the world. The change is comparable to the turn of a millennium.
In fact, Grube says, Mayan artefacts include many references to dates that stem far beyond December 2012.
"You find dates in Mayan texts that are thousands or millions of years into the future," he said.
Hope that bunker is still well stocked.
Take a look at some past predictions from around the world here:
As the Christian Science Monitor reports, the "Prophet Hen of Leeds," a domesticated fowl in England, began laying eggs that bore the message "Christ is coming" in 1806, leading locals to believe the end of the world was upon them. Charles Mackay's 1841 book, Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds, describes it thus: "Great numbers visited the spot, and examined these wondrous eggs, convinced that the day of judgment was near at hand. Like sailors in a storm, expecting every instant to go to the bottom, the believers suddenly became religious, prayed violently, and flattered themselves that they repented them of their evil courses. But a plain tale soon put them down, and quenched their religion entirely. Some gentlemen, hearing of the matter, went one fine morning, and caught the poor hen in the act of laying one of her miraculous eggs. They soon ascertained beyond doubt that the egg had been inscribed with some corrosive ink, and cruelly forced up again into the bird's body. At this explanation, those who had prayed, now laughed, and the world wagged as merrily as of yore."
U.S.-based religious broadcaster Pat Robertson told followers: "I guarantee you by the end of 1982 there is going to be a judgment on the world." As the Christian Science Monitor reports, Robertson has said that God told him about pending disasters on numerous occasions -- including a West Coast tsunami in 2006, and a terrorist attack in 2007 -- neither of which occurred. "I have a relatively good track record," he has said. "Sometimes I miss."
Followers of the "Hyoo Go" (Rapture) movement, a collection of Korean "end-times" sects, firmly believed that Jesus was coming in 1992. When the prophesied events failed to pass, much turmoil broke out among the sects, and some followers tried to attack their preachers with knives.
The teachings of Michel de Nostrdame (or Nostradamus) have been translated and re-translated over time, but many of his followers believed that in the seventh month of year 1999, "a great king of terror will come from the sky," and would thus end the world.
Harold Camping, the head of a Christian broadcast group called Family Radio, has been predicting for years that the day would take place on May 21, 2011. Though he had claimed earlier that the world would end in Sept. 1994, that month passed without cataclysmic results. He has since said he'd miscalculated and that the apocalyptical flood would take place in May 2011.
Several scientists and speculators had proposed numerous astronomical alignments hinting at the planet's demise, based on the view that the calendar of the ancient Mayan civilization ends on Dec. 21, 2012. There is a range of eschatological beliefs that cataclysmic or transformative events will occur on December 21, 2012, which is said to be the end-date of a 5,125-year-long cycle in the Mayan long count calendar.