Thursday, June 28, 2007

Blue Moon On Saturday? Not So Fast

blue moon waxing, originally uploaded by paul+photos=moody.

There will not be a blue moon on Saturday. Please read Blue Moon on Thursday? Not So Fast from NPR on May 2007. Here is an abstract of the show:

All Things Considered, May 30, 2007 · There is a prevailing myth about what a blue moon is. Thursday, May 31, will bring the second full moon of the month. But that does not constitute a blue moon, as is popularly believed.

Kelly Beatty, editor of Night Sky magazine and executive editor of Sky and Telescope, tells Robert Siegel that a blue moon actually refers to the phenomenon of having four full moons in a season, which ordinarily has three.

Beatty also acknowledged that his magazine had a hand in giving the misconception credence. Sky and Telescope magazine recently put out a press release explaining its role in perpetuating the myth. It read, in part:

Our 1946 writer, amateur astronomer James Hugh Pruett (1886-1955), made an incorrect assumption about how the term had been used in the Maine Farmers' Almanac, where it consistently referred to the third full moon in a three-month season containing four. (By this definition there is no blue moon in May or June 2007, and the next one happens in May 2008.)
You can listen to the whole show from a link on the NPR page.


1 comment:

  1. I heard the saying "once in a blue moon" came from after the Krakatoa eruption in 1860-something... afterwards, thanks to the huge amount of dust thrown up in the air, the moon went blue even in London .... that is supposedly the root of the saying... well that's what I've always believed

    hope all's ok with you
    all the best



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