mooncloudsani

At 9:38 tonight the Moon will be full in Paradelle and because it is the full Moon nearest the autumnal equinox, it is a Harvest Moon.

I have written about that before, so I won’t go into much detail here again. You can read the earlier Harvest Moon posts, but this moon is the one that occurs at the time of some harvests and its light once helped the harvest by providing more light on fields.

If this was a year when the Harvest Moon falls in October, then this September full Moon would likely be referred to as the Full Corn Moon. That is another harvest reference to the time of harvesting corn. An alternate name is the Barley Moon which would also be harvested and threshed now.

Tonight is the third in a trio of Supermoons (read more about them) we have had and tonight will be the brightest of the three, although it is not an effect that  is really perceptible to us.

The zodiac is the band of constellations through which the Moon travels from night to night. The full Moon travels through a section at the start of autumn that forms a very shallow angle with the eastern horizon. For several nights near the full Harvest Moon, the Moon may rise as little as 23 minutes later on successive nights (at about 42 degrees north latitude). This brings a lot of bright moonlight early in the evening. By the time the Moon is in its last quarter, the light will have diminished. The effect is less noticeable the farther south you go and going north makes the effect more extreme.

We brought the Harvest Moon concept to the New World from Europe where this Full Moon rises only ten to 20 minutes later each night, and it must have seemed rather miraculous that while days were getting shorter with less sunlight, the Moon was extending the light into the evening.

Advertisements