OK so yesterday was that time of year when it irritates me to see posters for "New Year's Eve 2018" events, and on TV "Rocking Eve' 2018". (Though granted the latter is a copyrighted name and can mean anything the originator wants it to mean.)

Surely yesterday was actually "New Years Eve 2017", and today is "New Year's Day 2018"

Or perhaps yesterday was "The eve of 2018"..

Isn't New Year's Eve 2018, like 364 days from today? That is, the day before New Years Day 2019.



In the Gregorian calendar, New Year's Eve (also known as Old Year's Day or Saint Sylvester's Day in many countries), the last day of the year, is on 31 December
Many Christian congregations have New Year's Eve watchnight services.... Watch Night took on special significance to African Americans on New Year's Eve 1862, as slaves anticipated the arrival of 1 January 1863, when Lincoln had announced he would sign the Emancipation Proclamation.

Oxford Dictionary and Every other dictionary I can Google.

New Year’s Eve (noun)
31 December, especially the evening of that day


December 31, 1999
New Year's Eve 1999 was an eagerly awaited day by many around the world...


Quick Facts New Year's Eve is the last day of the year and the day before New Year's Day. New Year's Eve in Canada always falls on December 31 according to the Gregorian calendar.
New Year's Eve 2018 : Monday, December 31, 2018
New Year's Eve 2019 : Tuesday, December 31, 2019


I am of course willing to accept that I could be wrong here. It may be that I am missing some subtlety that I am overlooking, like perhaps what I am thinking of is "New Year's Ever, 2017" where the comma changes the meaning of the year number to more of a date than a numerical counter.

Anyway, I'm interesting in knowing the correct term and usage.

  • What did your own research show? Does that contradict or support the upvoted answer below? – Davo Jan 2 '18 at 11:58
  • @Davo my research tells me "In the Gregorian calendar, New Year's Eve (also known as Old Year's Day or Saint Sylvester's Day in many countries), the last day of the year, is on 31 December" Wikipedia.As such its the last day of 2017 NOT 2018. – Trevor_G Jan 2 '18 at 12:34

New Year's Eve 2018 is another way of saying the last day of 2017. The last day of the year, any year in the Gregorian calendar, is December 31 st.

The word eve means

1.(sometimes initial capital letter) the evening or the day before a holiday, church festival, or any date or event:

Therefore, New Year's Eve 2018 is the evening before January 1st, 2018, the first day of the year.

Mariah Carey redeems herself with New Year's Eve 2018 live performance

  • I understand your logic here, but isn't that grammatically in error, since the 2018 comes last. 2018's eve would be more correct from that logic.. Putting it the other way around gives the last day of the year the importance in the phrase making New Year's Eve 2018 31/12/18. No? – Trevor_G Jan 1 '18 at 23:33
  • @Trevor New Year's Eve is a different way of saying the evening before 1st January. When we talk about Christmas Eve, which day of the year is it? The 25th or the 24th of December? – Mari-Lou A Jan 1 '18 at 23:38
  • Yes indeed, and obviously the 24th. But again, you are talking about the day before.. it is still 2017. As you say, new years eve is the day before the first of January. What is the date of new years eve in 2017? – Trevor_G Jan 1 '18 at 23:41
  • Of course, Xmas Day occurs in the same year as Xmas Eve, the year is still 2017 but NYD is different, it's 2018. The feast is called New Year's Day, the evening before that is called New Year's Eve, now if some want to add 2018 I see no problem with that, it's just saying that "tomorrow" is the "beginning of 2018". – Mari-Lou A Jan 1 '18 at 23:44
  • Yes I can see exactly what you are saying, but I will leave you with a final thought. Maria Carey redeemed herself in the Celebrations on New Years Eve 2017. Though there may be a comma missing there.... – Trevor_G Jan 1 '18 at 23:54

Appending the year to a day to identify the year is a common pattern, especially if the day is a really a huge event.

I remember Memorial Day 1965. It was a long time ago.

Thanksgiving 1995 was a Thanksgiving to be remembered.

You say Christmas Eve to mean the day before Christmas Day.

So New Year's Eve 2018 means the day before New Year's Day 2018.

In any event, since this usage is so common, glossing it over with the term "idiomatic" is appropriate.

  • Sorry but, New Years Eve is still a noun and the name of a day. Tagging a year simply indicates which year the day indicated is in. There is no difference between Christmas 2017, Independence Day 2017, and New Years Eve 2017. They all indicate a particular day in a particular year. The fact that many folks are misusing the term is not relevant, especially not for a forum like this that is supposed to identify the correct usage. Read my references.. – Trevor_G Jan 2 '18 at 13:34
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    There's always a tension between how people are actually using terms (descriptive) and how people should use terms (prescriptive). You can't master English without knowing both. If everyone misuses a term, then it's the right way and your rules need to be altered. – LawrenceC Jan 2 '18 at 13:36

The eve of New Years Day 2018 is colloquially referred to as "New Years Eve 2018".

If you have problems with that, you will have to take the matter up with the Ministry of Imprecision.

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    That does not really answer my question as to what is the correct English usage. – Trevor_G Jan 1 '18 at 20:57
  • 1
    Your question falsely assumes that there is such a thing as "correct English usage" in this matter. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jan 1 '18 at 21:28

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