Whether full moon in December is a Cold Moon or a Strawberry Moon is not rocket science to solve. It’s just simple physics. The last full moon of 2021 in the earth’s northern hemisphere is known as Cold Moon. This December full moon will occur on Saturday, December 18, 2021, at sharp 23:37 at Eastern Standard Time (EST).
On the contrary, for the people living in the southern hemisphere; let’s say for Australian people, they call the full moon in December a Strawberry Moon. In the earth’s southern areas, the strawberry moon will occur on Sunday, December 19, 2021, at sharp 12:37 at Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST).
Wanna know why different full moon names in the different hemispheres and many more interesting facts about the full moon in December 2021? I would recommend you to keep reading! Let’s dive right in!!!
Why Different Full Moon Names in Different Hemisphere?
Just because there is an approx 6 months of seasonal difference between the northern and southern hemispheres, people living above and below the equator use different full moon names.
Obviously, now you would be thinking that what could be the reason behind the seasonal difference between the two hemispheres?
Well, just because the earth has an axial tilt of 23.4 degrees, there is a seasonal mismatch between the southern and the northern hemisphere. See the above image for proper understanding.
However, If you wanna know more about the earth’s tilt and how it affects the seasons on the earth, you can check this article. I can bet you will love this piece of article.
Different Full Moon Names in Northern Hemisphere
For millennia, ancient humans have used different seasons as a guide to track the different full moons. Or, you can say for millennia, humans have used the full moons to track the changing season. However, seasons are not the only possible way to define different full moon names.
What I mean is that the names given to the various full moons are based upon a couple of different sources. Out of all, the most famous and widely acknowledged full moon names come from the tribes of native American culture.
As per the legends, in order to keep track of changing seasons, the Algonquin tribal people used to follow the lunar calendar rather than following the solar calendar.
These full moon names were later adopted by Colonial Americans and European settlers. And, with time, these names were finally integrated with the modern (Georgian calendar) calendar.
Editor’s Choice: Full Moon Calendar 2021 (Dates & Names – Northern Hemisphere)
Full Moon in December 2021 – Cold Moon in Northern Hemisphere
In the northern hemisphere, the full moon in December is known as Cold Moon. WHY? Because this is the time when the winter truly begins in the Earth’s northern areas.
Not to mention, it will also be the last full moon before the occurrence of the December Solstice. The December Solstice i.e the first day of winter in the northern hemisphere will occur on Tuesday, December 21, 2021, at sharp 15:59 Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).
Other Cultural Full Moon Names for December 2021 in Northern Hemisphere
Well, if you go somewhere away from your native place, you will see that local indigenous people have their own indigenous full moon names. For example:
- In Indian Culture, the full moon in December is known as Margasirsa Purnima. Not to mention, the full moon in Hindi is known as Purnima.
- English Medival people call it an Oak Moon.
- Chinese people call the full moon in December a Bitter Moon.
- Dakotah people call it the Twelfth Moon.
- Cherokee tribe people call it the Snow Moon.
- Colonial American People call it the Christmas Moon.
- Choctaw tribe people call it the Peach Moon, etc.
Different Full Moon Names in Southern Hemisphere
You would be baffled to know that the full moon names used in the southern hemisphere are the same as the northern hemisphere, just the seasonal difference. Wanna know why???
Well, because most of the people living in the southern hemisphere (let’s say Australia or New Zealand) are none other than the European settlers.
In other words, one can say that European settlers, at first, integrated the native American full moon names into their modern Georgian calendar. And, later, many of these full moon names went with them to new places around the world.
Editor’s Choice: Full Moon Calendar 2021 (Dates & Names – Southern Hemisphere)
Full Moon in December 2021 – Strawberry Moon in Southern Hemisphere
In the southern hemisphere, the full moon in December is known as Full Strawberry Moon or Strawberry Moon. WHY? Because this month’s full moon indicates the ripening of fruits (Strawberry).
In fact, not only this will be the last full moon of 2021. It will also be the last full moon before the arrival of the Summer Solstice in the earth’s southern areas. The official first day of summer in the southern hemisphere will occur on Wednesday, December 22, at sharp 02:59 Australian Eastern Daylight Time (AEDT).
Other Cultural Full Moon Names for December 2021 in Southern Hemisphere
Well, if you go somewhere away from your native place, you will see that local indigenous people have their own indigenous full moon names. Sadly, that is not the case with the people living in the southern hemisphere.
Not to mention, for several days, I have been trying to get some detail regarding the full moon naming criteria for the Earth’s southern areas. But, I did not find any single piece of work related to that.
However, I did find one resource where it has been mentioned that the native people of the southern hemisphere (Māori People of New Zealand) didn’t assign a name to only the Full Moon phase of each month. Every night of the Moon had a name.
Therefore, as a result of these elaborated naming conditions, many in the Southern Hemisphere rely on the European-inspired Full Moon Names.
Just to let you know, one of my friends Retha Potgieter recently told me about the update on Full moon names in South Africa. Since September 2020, South Africa have their own unique full moon names.
As per the Centre for Astronomical Heritage (CfAH), in South Africa, the full moon in December is known as SPRINGBOK MOON. The Centre for Astronomical Heritage (CfAH) is a non-profit company working to protect South Africa’s astronomical heritage.
The Centre’s mission is to record, preserve, and disseminate information about South Africa’s tangible and intangible astronomical heritage. I would request you to visit this website at least once. They are doing really nice work.
When is the Next Full Moon in 2021?
The next full moon will occur on Saturday, December 18, 2021, at sharp 23:37 at Eastern Standard Time (EST). It will be known as the Cold Moon. Okay, for northerners, it will be a Cold Moon. But, for the southerner, it will be a Strawberry Moon.
Therefore, for southerners, it will occur on Sunday, December 19, 2021, at sharp 12:37 at Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST). In addition, on this day, the moon will be in Gemini. At last, I wish you good luck with this epic moon gazing.
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