A RARE Blue Moon was in the night sky over the UK this weekend in August 2021.
The phenomenon known as a “blue moon” occurs when there is a second full moon in the same calendar month.
What is a Blue Moon?
A full moon occurs when the earth comes directly between the sun and the moon.
It happens every 29 and a half days, and each month’s full moon has a special name.
This is because Native American tribes kept track of the months of the year by the lunar calendar.
A Blue Moon is the name of any month’s second full moon – an event that only occurs once every three years.
It led to people coining the phrase “once in a blue moon”, meaning something that doesn’t happen very often.
more on space and astronomy
When is the next Blue Moon?
Using the calendar month definition, the next blue moon comes on 31 August 2023, followed by 31 May 2026 and 31 December 2028.
Blue moons aren’t actually blue – the confusion is because the term originates in “blewe”, the old English word for “betrayer”.
Normally, a year would have 12 moons, but when a moon appears for the 13th time – it was perceived to have ‘betrayed’ the lunar cycle.
However, a moon can appear blue if the right kind of dust is kicked up into the atmosphere, and filtering out excessive red light.
A full Blue Moon only occurs every two to three years[/caption]
How often is a Blue Moon?
A Blue Moon does not usually happen more than once a year.
Generally, Blue Moons come around once every two or three years.
The next Blue Moon will occur in August 2023.
What does a Blue Moon mean?
Folklore often associates a Blue Moon with the growth of knowledge and wisdom within the phases of a woman’s life.
The moon generally being connected with the feminine.
Although generally there is no particular association with a Blue Moon although spiritualists and pagans see it as a particularly magical time.