The present in BP is set at 1950, as this was close to when radiometric dating began to be used. Therefore a date like 3000 BP means 3000 before 1950 AD: in other words 1050 BC. As with AD and BC, the use of lower case bp usually means the date is uncalibrated, and upper case means calibrated.

## What can I use instead of BC?

The alternative to using BC and AD would be to use BCE, which means “before Common Era,” and CE, which means “Common Era.” Despite removing Christianity from the name, BCE and CE are still tied to the original Christian idea of BC and AD.

## Why is BC no longer used?

The simplest reason for using BCE/CE as opposed to AD/BC is to avoid reference to Christianity and, in particular, to avoid naming Christ as Lord (BC/AD: Before Christ/In the year of our Lord).

## Why is BC BCE now?

BCE/CE continues to be used because it is more accurate than BC/AD. Dionysius had no understanding of the concept of zero and neither did Bede. The calendar they dated events from, therefore, is inaccurate. The year 1 AD would follow 1 BC without a starting point for the new chronology of events.

## What is the last BC year?

The 1st century BC, also known as the last century BC, started on the first day of 100 BC and ended on the last day of 1 BC. The AD/BC notation does not use a year zero; however, astronomical year numbering does use a zero, as well as a minus sign, so 2 BC is equal to year –1.