The nights have been getting darker for quite a while and it might feel like the days looking shorter. And, finally the shortest day of the year, Winter Solstice 2016 is here.
It is December Solstice or Winter Solstice in Northern Hemisphere and this is June Solstice or Summer Solstice in the Southern Hemisphere.
In the USA and other territories in the Northern Hemisphere, the solstice marks the first day of winter. It is considered to mark the end of autumn and the start of winter.
It been praised by agnostics for a large number of years, and a considerable lot of the conventions now connected with Christmas had their underlying foundations in winter solstice festivities – including the Christmas tree.
The world may look really inauspicious now, however when the solstice has passed, the days will begin getting longer again and you can begin anticipating Spring.
What is the winter solstice?
The winter solstice marks the shortest day and the longest night of the year and the official start of winter. The solstice itself is the minute the sun is sparkling most distant toward the south, straightforwardly over the Tropic of Capricorn.
Worldwide, interpretation of the event has varied across cultures, but many have held a recognition of rebirth, involving holidays, festivals, gatherings, rituals or other celebrations around that time.
When is the Winter Solstice?
The date of the solstice is diverse consistently, falling between December 20th and 23rd. This year, the solstice happens today, Wednesday, December 21. The sun will ascend in the UK at 08:04 GMT and set at 15:54 GMT, giving only 7 hours and 49 minutes of sunshine.
Traditions and Rituals
The winter solstice is a noteworthy pagan celebration, with ceremonies of resurrection having been commended for a large number of years. Consistently revelers assemble at Stonehenge to watch the dawn on the most limited day.
The pagan Scandinavian and Germanic people of northern Europe celebrated a twelve-day “midwinter” (winter solstice) holiday called Yule. Many modern Christmas traditions, such as the Christmas tree, the Christmas wreath, the Yule log, and others, are direct descendents of Yule customs.
The Christmas carol In The Bleak Midwinter refers to the Winter solstice in its title.
Myth has it the changed over agnostics in the district gave back the next year to design the fir tree.
After the solstice, the days will continuously get longer until the summer solstice on Wednesday, 21 June 2017.