On 21. June 2021 is the Summer solstice and thus the longest day of the year. On this day, the sun is at its highest in latitudes above the Tropic of Cancer – at 05.32 o'clock. This also marks the beginning of the astronomical or calendrical summer. But what is the difference between the astronomical and the meteorological summer solstice? Beginning of summer on 1. June, and which is the right?
These and other questions about the summer solstice we have explained for you.
What happens at the summer solstice?
The summer solstice marks the day on which the sun is at the Northern Hemisphere the earth shines the longest. The sun reaches its greatest distance north of the celestial equator on this day. Afterwards the northern hemisphere remains obliquely inclined to the sun. This means that with us Summer is. In the further course of the year the southern hemisphere leans more toward the sun. Then it is also a solstice – and winter in the northern hemisphere.
What is the difference between the calendar and astronomical beginning of summer??
According to meteorological reading, summer already begins on the 1. June on. The astronomical calendar is, however, more precise: the summer solstice and the position of the earth in relation to the sun are seen as the benchmark for the beginning of summer. This year, the sun is set on 21. June at 05.32 o'clock vertically above the tropic of the northern hemisphere of the earth. This is the longest day of the year.
The astronomical beginning of summer is also called the calendrical beginning of summer.
Summer solstice: When will the days get shorter again?
After the summer solstice the days become shorter and the nights longer. This is due to the position of the Earth's axis. In Winter the days become longer and the nights shorter accordingly.
Summer solstice: What does it mean?
For many people, the summer solstice has a mystic Meaning. Pagan religious communities often celebrate it with a bonfire. The UNESCO even included the summer solstice fire festivals in the Pyrenees in its list of intangible cultural heritages. The inhabitants of the Pyrenean villages and towns carry burning torches down the mountains and set fire to signal fires. In Germany, the festival of St. John is celebrated around the summer solstice.
Summer solstice: What is the Midsummer Festival?
In Scandinavian countries at the summer solstice the Midsummer festival celebrated. In Sweden, the Midsommar festival is the second largest festival of the year after Christmas and is celebrated for an entire weekend. For this, the midsummer tree is erected and decorated. Similar festivals are also celebrated in Denmark and Norway, Estonia and Finland.
In Spain, on the "Night of St. John," people gather in coastal towns to celebrate and jump into the water at midnight to welcome the summer solstice. Also with the beginning of autumn questions about the difference arise: Meteorologically and calendrical: When is beginning of autumn?