A Conversation for The Full Moons - What's in a Name?

Blue moons

Post 1


Congratulations on an intersting and informative entry for the Guide. I have been a full moon aficionado since I was about 16, ie many moons ago, not to mention North American Indian cultures, and I was totally unaware of the naming of particular moons. I was aware that in the UK there occurs the Harvest Moon, known for treachery, as farmers tend to be going about with full pockets at that time, and they were frequently robbed.

In terms of relationships, the harvest moon is also a time when partners tend to look at each other and ask themselves if they can ber another cold dark winter with that halfwit, sometimes leading to abandonment, and similar extra-curricular activities, but it would take the North American tribes to take the trouble to name every moon. I know the Inuit have 12 names for snow, the Gaelic speakers several names for drizzle!

Do you know of any other cultures who have named all the moons? Presumably the Maya, or Aztecs were sufficiently aware of the celestial extravaganza to go into such detail.

Thouroughly great bit of info though, mate, & Happy Xmas to you, if you're into all that!

Greetings from Southwest Scotland

Blue moons

Post 2

Dmitri Gheorgheni - Not Banned in China

And hi from under the full, cold moon of North Carolina.smiley - smiley Enjoyed this.

About the designation 'blue'. Just a guess, but it might have something etymologically to do with the meaning of 'blue Monday', which is also blue in German.

The explanation my professor at the Martin Buber Institute in Cologne gave me was that it came from the Hebrew/Yiddish word 'b'lo', meaning 'without'.

On Mondays, you were often 'without' energy, sense, desire to go to work, any money left from the weekend, etc.

Hebrew expressions often entered the common language through Yiddish by way of thieves' cant, in German and in English. And sometimes the words changed meaning.

Anyway, thanks for the moon lore!

Blue moons

Post 3


Theives cant be held responsible for everything! I just decoded a bit from the old Carry On films I was watching Michael Palin in the Khyber Pass, and it dawned on me what a "Kick up the Khyber" derived from. What an ass!

Ciao buddy

Blue moons

Post 4


I think the saxons named most moons - The Venerable Bede has a nice little list, but I don't have his book. The three I know are Blood Moon, Mourning Moon and Long Nights Moon (which was last night, as I type this.)

At risk of sounding pedantic as that wasn't quite your meaning, Blood Moon has a lot to do with Halloween, in that it was the final of the harvest festivals when all the animals were driven into the winter quarters (namely people's houses) and those that weren't going to make it through the winter were butchered- lots of blood. Hence the name. It's the same tradition that gives us bone fires, I think. Nontheless brilliant article.

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