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Midsummer and MIdWinter

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Forums -> Wicca -> Midsummer and MIdWinter

Midsummer and MIdWinter
By:
Post # 1

Midsummer is June 20 or 21, technically the first day of summer, has the most sunlight of the year

Midwinter is December 20 or 21, technically the first day of winter, has the least sunlight of the year

Why are they misnamed? Midwinter is I believe in February/March and Midsummer is I believe in July/August. I understand that the wheel of the year is based on agricultural cycles, I do not get the continued use of names that are incorrect for times of the year.

Could someone explain this to me?

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Re: Midsummer and MIdWinter
By: / Novice
Post # 2
Well there are many different names for these holidays [like Litha and Yule] back to the Celts and Druids, they had seasons, not months. There was the summer seasons where they grew and the winter where they hunted. So spring and summer were just summer, and autumn was part of winter. On the solstice is when days grow shorter or longer, hotter or colder, so its seen as the middle.

Call it what you want as long as you understand what the holiday represents. Also, in the southern hemisphere, many reverse the holiday according to the season. So while the summer soltice is soon for the northern pagans, those bellow the equator are celebrating the first day of winter. [Just a side note]
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Re: Midsummer and MIdWinter
By: Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 3

Actually Midsummer/Litha and Midwinter/Yule are correct. The problem is that modern society looks at June 21st as the first day of summer and December 21st as the first day of winter. That is not how the ancients perceived it. In Britain for instance winter began at Samhain while summer started at Beltane. If you view the dates in this fashion then Midsummer would indeed fall on the Solstice as would Yule.

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Re: Midsummer and MIdWinter
By:
Post # 4

Thank you.

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Re: Midsummer and MIdWinter
By:
Post # 5

Thank you.

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Re: Midsummer and MIdWinter
By: Moderator / Adept
Post # 6
Lark has it correct; especially here in Britain. At one time almost the whole of Britain was ruled by Denmark, and we had "Danelaw". There were only two "seasons" of the year; the Growing season, and "The cold". Eventually, (mainly due to experiments with plants by the witches) certain plants,Neaps and some Brassicas,began to be cultivated during "the cold"; but as Lark says, mainly the time was for hunting.However, even the two seasons were "broken up" by "rest periods"; after ploughing,after sowing, after harvest, and so on. These became the "Sabbats" we have today. That the Christians "stole" and turned into Holidays. (Holy Days)
But the solstices were always Mid-summer and Mid-winter.
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