diamond geezer

 Friday, July 30, 2004

Once In A Blue Moon

Definition
: A Blue Moon is the second Full Moon in a single calendar month.*

There was a Full Moon on 2nd July at 11:09 (GMT)
There is a Full Moon tomorrow at 18:05 (GMT)
So tomorrow's Full Moon is a Blue Moon.

Blue Moons are rare, hence the phrase "once in a Blue Moon" meaning 'not very often'.
Blue Moons are rare because Full Moons are 29½ days apart, which is only just shorter than a month of 30 or 31 days.
There cannot be a Blue Moon in February because it's too short.
There are more Blue Moons in October, August and July than in any other months.

Blue Moons happen roughly every 2½ years. That's about 41 times a century.
The last Blue Moon was on 30th November 2001, and the next two will be on 30th June 2007 and 31st December 2009.
Very occasionally there are two Blue Moons in a year. This happens where there is no Full Moon in February. This last happened in 1999 and 1961, and will next happen in 2018 and 2037.

Very very occasionally the Moon really does look blue. This is a different sort of Blue Moon. The blue colour is caused by dust or smoke thrown high in the Earth's atmosphere by, for example, major volcanic eruptions like Krakatoa, Mount St Helens or Mount Pinatubo.

A special message to readers in Australia, New Zealand and the Far East: you don't have a Blue Moon this month. Tomorrow's Full Moon falls just after your midnight, which therefore becomes the full Moon in August. So you lot have a Blue Moon on 30th August instead.

For much more information about Blue Moons check out this website, including a Blue Moon Calculator.

* Be aware that the generally-accepted definition of a Blue Moon (the second Full Moon in a month) isn't traditional at all and was actually invented by a journalist 60 years ago. The magazine in question has apologised for its error. Proper history here.

Blue moon, you saw me standing alone, without a dream in my heart, without a love of my own. Blue moon, you knew just what I was there for, you heard me saying a prayer for, someone I really could care for. Bom, bom bom bom, bom bom, bom bom bom. Bom bom, bom bom bom, a dang, a dang dang dang. A ding a dong ding. Blue moon!


<< click for Newer posts

click for Older Posts >>


click to return to the main page


...or read more in my monthly archives
Jan17  Feb17  Mar17  Apr17  May17  Jun17
Jan16  Feb16  Mar16  Apr16  May16  Jun16  Jul16  Aug16  Sep16  Oct16  Nov16  Dec16
Jan15  Feb15  Mar15  Apr15  May15  Jun15  Jul15  Aug15  Sep15  Oct15  Nov15  Dec15
Jan14  Feb14  Mar14  Apr14  May14  Jun14  Jul14  Aug14  Sep14  Oct14  Nov14  Dec14
Jan13  Feb13  Mar13  Apr13  May13  Jun13  Jul13  Aug13  Sep13  Oct13  Nov13  Dec13
Jan12  Feb12  Mar12  Apr12  May12  Jun12  Jul12  Aug12  Sep12  Oct12  Nov12  Dec12
Jan11  Feb11  Mar11  Apr11  May11  Jun11  Jul11  Aug11  Sep11  Oct11  Nov11  Dec11
Jan10  Feb10  Mar10  Apr10  May10  Jun10  Jul10  Aug10  Sep10  Oct10  Nov10  Dec10 
Jan09  Feb09  Mar09  Apr09  May09  Jun09  Jul09  Aug09  Sep09  Oct09  Nov09  Dec09
Jan08  Feb08  Mar08  Apr08  May08  Jun08  Jul08  Aug08  Sep08  Oct08  Nov08  Dec08
Jan07  Feb07  Mar07  Apr07  May07  Jun07  Jul07  Aug07  Sep07  Oct07  Nov07  Dec07
Jan06  Feb06  Mar06  Apr06  May06  Jun06  Jul06  Aug06  Sep06  Oct06  Nov06  Dec06
Jan05  Feb05  Mar05  Apr05  May05  Jun05  Jul05  Aug05  Sep05  Oct05  Nov05  Dec05
Jan04  Feb04  Mar04  Apr04  May04  Jun04  Jul04  Aug04  Sep04  Oct04  Nov04  Dec04
Jan03  Feb03  Mar03  Apr03  May03  Jun03  Jul03  Aug03  Sep03  Oct03  Nov03  Dec03
 Jan02  Feb02  Mar02  Apr02  May02  Jun02  Jul02 Aug02  Sep02  Oct02  Nov02  Dec02 

eXTReMe Tracker
jack of diamonds
Life viewed from London E3

» email me
» follow me on twitter
» follow the blog on Twitter
» follow the blog on RSS

my flickr photostream