We recently had a Thunder Moon on July 9 and before that the Strawberry Moon on June 9. Coming up is the Sturgeon Moon on August 7, and most of you have heard of the Harvest Moon (September 6). Where did these full-moon names come from, and what do they mean?
- Why do full moons have names?
- What causes the phases of the moon?
- Why is a full moon sometimes called a Super Moon?
- How was the moon created?
- How long would it take to drive or walk to the moon?
Did you know . . .
- life as we know it would not exist without the moon?
- the moon is drifting away from us?
- the moon is not the Earth’s only satellite?
“Many moons ago” is an idiom that means “a long time ago.” A full moon occurs occurs every 29.53 days, so counting moons is similar to counting months.
The early Native Americans gave each full moon a name to keep track of the seasons and lunar months. The moon names for each month of the year and their descriptions are available in the article link below.
The first video in The Telegraph article (link below) discusses Five fascinating facts about the moon (4:40).
The second video discusses and models What causes the phases of the moon? (2:14).
“Many people think the phases of the moon are caused by the Earth’s shadow. This is one of the biggest misconceptions in astronomy. I’m going to show you how it really works.”
~Dr. Simon Foster
Source: Complete list of every full moon including July’s Thunder moon on The Telegraph (Science)
By the way, the Earth’s shadow on the moon is caused by eclipses and partial eclipses, not by the phases of the moon.
Below is some photography by Rich Weatherly on Flickr.
April 2014 Lunar Eclipse (Blood Moon)
Supermoon (June 22-23, 2013)
Farmers’ Almanac: Full Moon Names and Their Meanings