View Full Version : Blue Moon This Week

2012-Aug-27, 03:40 PM
When you hear someone say “Once in a Blue Moon” you know what they mean. They’re usually talking about something rare, silly, and even absurd. After all, when was the last time you saw the Moon turn blue? Well, rare or not, we’re having one this week, and according to astronomer David Reneke writer and [...]

More... (http://www.universetoday.com/97084/blue-moon-this-week/)

2012-Aug-27, 03:54 PM
It’s not at all clear where the term ‘Blue Moon’ comes from. According to modern folklore it dates back at least 400 years. A Blue Moon is the second Full Moon in a calendar month. “Usually months have only one Full Moon, but occasionally a second one sneaks in, David said. “Ancient cultures around the world considered the second Full Moon to be spiritually significant.”Considering that a "blue moon" referred to a second moon of a calendar month only in the past sixty years, I'm dubious. I guess I'll have to see what David Reneke had to say, and what he referenced.

2012-Aug-27, 04:05 PM
OK, the UT website at the top credits Tammy Plotner, but at the bottom, it says it was contributed by David Reneke. But it quotes Reneke.

Weirdly enough, Reneke's website has nearly the same article, almost word for word, with significant differences:

One difference is that the website says that a blue moon meaning two moons in a calendar month is modern folklore, whereas the UT story leaves out that detail.

2012-Aug-27, 06:45 PM
From Sky and Telescope:

With help from Margaret Vaverek (Southwest Texas State University) and several other librarians, we obtained more than 40 editions of the Maine Farmers' Almanac from the period 1819 to 1962. These refer to more than a dozen Blue Moons, and not one of them is the second full Moon in a month. What's going on here?

With two decades of popular usage behind it, the second-full-Moon-in-a-month (mis)interpretation is like a genie that can't be forced back into its bottle.

2012-Aug-28, 01:42 AM
Okay, this is just rather odd. They're almost identical, as you mentioned, but the Reneke version also quotes "David".

Thanks for the Sky & Tel link, by the way.