MOON'S CURRENT PHASE (DISPLAY) -- and MORE

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LUNATION CYCLES LOOP DISPLAY
Lunation Cycles Loop
Total Cycle Repeats
Each 29 +/- ½ Days



Click to See
Current Moon Phase
Next Full or New Moon
plus
Planetary Positions

CURRENT US MOON PHASE DISPLAY
Moon's current phase
Updated Every Four Hours ~ courtesy USNO
Display above DARK some 2 days before/after NEW MOON
New Moon
New Moon
[Dark]
Waxing Crescent
Waxing
Crescent
First Quarter
First
Quarter
Waxing Gibbous
Waxing
Gibbous
Full Moon
Full Moon
Waning Gibbous
Waning
Gibbous
Last Quarter
Last
Quarter
Waning Crescent
Waning
Crescent
SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE ("DOWN-UNDER") MOON VIEWS
New Moon
New Moon
[Dark]
Waxing Crescent
Waxing
Crescent
First Quarter
First
Quarter
Waxing Gibbous
Waxing
Gibbous
Full Moon
Full Moon
Waning Gibbous
Waning
Gibbous
Last Quarter
Last
Quarter
Waning Crescent
Waning
Crescent

MOON'S PHASES: MORE INFORMATION

ALMOST everyone has seen the Moon wax (become bigger) and wane (become smaller), growing progressively larger and smaller through a period of approximately 29 ½ days. This circuit from New Moon, when the surface of the Moon is completely dark, to Full Moon, when it is totally lit, and back again, is called the "lunation cycle." It is the result of a relationship between the Sun, Moon and Earth. As the Moon makes one entire trip around the Earth, it reflects the light of the Sun in varying degrees, depending on the angle between the Sun and Moon as viewed from Earth. During the year, the Moon will make thirteen such trips (meaning each calendar year has 13 Lunar months), each called a lunation.

This cycle is divided into four parts called "phases." There are several methods by which this can be done, and the system used in the Moon Sign Book will not necessarily correspond exactly to those used in other almanacs and calendars. It is important, when using the Moon as a guide, to use Llewellyn's Astrological Calendar or Moon Sign Book (available at bookstores and at www.llewellyn.com), as these books have been designed especially for astrological use.

The method of division used by Llewellyn divides the lunation cycle into four phases or quarters. These are measured as follows.

The FIRST QUARTER begins when the Sun and Moon are in the same place, or conjunct (in "conjunction"). The Moon is not visible at first, since it rises at the same time as the Sun. But toward the end of this phase, a silver thread can be seen just after sunset as the Moon follows the Sun over the western horizon.

The SECOND QUARTER begins halfway between tbe New Moon and Full Moon, when the Sun and Moon are at right angles, or a 90 degrees square (in "square") to each other. This half-moon rises around noon, and sets around midnight, so it can be seen in the western sky during the first half of the night.

The THIRD QUARTER begins with the Full Moon, when the Sun and Moon are opposite (in "opposition"--or 180 degrees apart) [from] one another and the full light of the Sun can shine on the full sphere of the Moon. The round Moon can be seen rising in the east at sunset, and then rising progressively a little later each evening.

The FOURTH QUARTER begins about halfway between the Full Moon and New Moon, when the Sun and Moon are again at 90 degrees (in "square"), or right angles. This decreasing Moon rises at midnight, and can be seen in the east during the last half of the night, reaching the overhead position just about as the Sun rises. -- Excerpted [and slightly modified]: Llewellyn's Moon Sign Book.

SOME LUNAR (MOON) QUESTIONS and ANSWERS

Question: Why does the Moon seem much larger near the horizon (rising/setting) than when higher in the sky?
Answer (?): Several books have been written about the "moon illusion" but no real conclusion has been established. Elbert Wade's explantion is as follows -- and is possibly as good as any. Your mind has a concept about the size of distant trees and other known objects but no in-memory concept of the Moon's size. Therefore the mind/memory compares the Moon's size to the distant trees/objects to the Moon's glow and the eyes tell the brain the glowing object (Moon) is much larger than the (in-memory) known size of distant familiar objects. As the Moon rises in the sky this "comparison" becomes more and more difficult so without the "benefit" of the in-memory comparison the Moon appears smaller.

Question: What is a "Blue Moon"?
Answer: A "Blue Moon" is the second FULL MOON in the same calendar month -- which occurs infrequently. Therefore the expression "Once in a Blue Moon" takes on significance in that it indicates something happens rarely.

Question: What is a "Moonbow"?
Answer: Not unlike a rainbow, a "Moonbow" is seen when moonlight is refracted (bent when it passes obliquely -- in a slanting manner -- from one medium to another) through water droplets in the Earth's atmosphere.

Question: What is a "Moondog"?
Answer: A "Moondog" is produced as the result of Earth's atmospheric moisture. (See "Moonbow" above) A second and even sometimes a third Moon can be observed next to the real Moon.

Question: What causes a "Ring" (or "Rings") around the Moon?
Answer: The "Ring" is caused by the Moon's light being refracted by/through high-level ice crystals in the Earth's atmosphere.

Question: When applied to the Moon, what does "Perigee" and "Apogee" mean?
Answer: As the Moon circles the earth in a somewhat oval orbit, at times it is at its closest (Perigee -- about 221,473 miles) and then at its farthest (Apogee -- about 252,722 miles) distance from Earth.

Question: Does the word LUNATIC have anything to do with the Moon?
Answer: Yes. Luna is the Moon. Whether fact, fantasy or superstition, many believe the Moon's phases (especially the Full Moon) may tend to trigger certain perhaps bizarre behavior. (Werewolves???) There is some more realistic research which seems to support the belief that humans and other livings things are affected by Moon phases -- as well as are the tides.

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