In keeping with the global (see Etiological Myth) concept of Her Cycle of Transformations the calendar does not make seasonal references. The conventional three-hundred and sixty five day (or sixty six every fourth) year has six solar events, the two equinoxes, the two solstices, and perihelion, Earth's nearest approach to the sun, and aphelion, Earth's farthest point from the sun.
perihelion image PERIHELION. The year starts at or about perihelion, Earth's closest point to the sun. Greek Peri, 'near' plus Helion, 'the sun', the actual date varies from Jan 1 to Jan 4. This is the first solar event in Holladay Paganism's year.

equinox image NORTHWARD EQUINOX (or First Equinox). The second solar event is the first equinox. This sometimes occurs on the conventional date of Mar 21, but actually varies from Mar 20 to Mar 24. It is the equinox [Greek equi 'equal' plus nox, 'night, night(s)?'], because Earth's relationship to the sun is such that the day and the nights are of equal length. It is termed the northward equinox, by Holladay Paganism because Earth's axis from this date on is bringing the northern hemisphere closer to the sun.

northern solstice image NORTHERN SOLSTICE (or Mid Year Solstice). The third solar event of the year is the first solstice. Greek sol, 'sun', plus stice, 'stands, stand still', because it appeared to our ancestors that the sun stood still at this moment in the year. Holladay Paganism calls it the northern solstice. It is the longest day of the year for the northern hemisphere, the shortest day for the southern, because at this time Earth's northern pole is at its closest to the sun.

aphelion image APHELION. The MidYear Solstice is quickly followed by Aphelion, [Greek ap-, 'furthest', plus helion, (from the) 'sun', thus pronunciation is @PHELE0N, not @FELE0N, as we might expect seeing the characters ph]. The fourth event of the solar year, Aphelion, occurs on or about July 4th. A happy synchronicity is its co-incidence with USA's Independence Day .

equinox image SOUTWARD EQUINOX (or Last Equinox). The fifth solar event of the year is the second equinox, when again the day and the night are of equal length. But now Earth's axis has brought the southern hemisphere closest to the sun. It is popularly thought to occur Sep 21, but can actually occur on the 22 and 23 as well. For Holladay Paganism this is the southern equinox.

southern solstice image SOUTHERN SOLSTICE (or Year End Solstice). The sixth and final solar event of the year is the second solstice, the southern solstice, as far as Holladay Paganism's concerned, and this occurs on or about December 21. New Zealand is at mid-summer, their's is the longest day, while the northern hemisphere shivers through its longest night.

Goddess Reference | Her Cyclopedia Index
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