Origin of vernal equinox
Words nearby vernal equinox
MORE ABOUT VERNAL EQUINOX
What and when is the vernal equinox?
The vernal equinox (also called the spring equinox) is one of the two equinoxes—the times of the year when the amount of daylight and nighttime hours are just about of equal length. The two equinoxes occur around March 20–21 and September 22–23.
The equinoxes occur on these days, but an equinox is not the whole day—it is the moment when the sun is directly above Earth’s equator. The term equinox can also refer to the position of the sun at this moment, and the term vernal equinox can refer to the position of the sun at the moment considered the vernal equinox. This can also be called the vernal point.
The vernal equinox is traditionally considered to mark the start of spring, while the autumnal equinox is considered to mark the start of fall. In the Northern Hemisphere, the vernal equinox occurs in March and the autumnal equinox occurs in September. In the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the reverse.
In contrast, a solstice is one of the two times of the year when the positioning and tilt of Earth relative to the sun results in the most amount of daylight time or the least amount of daylight time in a single day.
There are two solstices during the year: one that occurs around June 20–22 (usually June 20 or 21) and one that occurs around December 20–23 (usually December 21 or 22). In the Northern Hemisphere, the summer solstice occurs in June and the winter solstice occurs in December. In the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the reverse.
Example: Many ancient cultures marked the vernal equinox with festivals, some of which continue to be observed today.
Where does vernal equinox come from?
The first records of the term vernal equinox come from around 1530. The word vernal means “of or relating to spring.” The word equinox comes from the Latin aequinoctium, meaning “the time of equal days and nights,” from equi-, meaning “equal,” and nocti-, meaning “night.”
An equinox is a moment, not an entire day. Since Earth is in motion, the exact positioning considered an equinox only happens for a moment. However, the word is most commonly used to refer to the day on which this happens. On most calendars, these days are used to mark the beginning of spring and fall similar to how the days of the two solstices are used to mark the beginning of summer and winter.
While the day of an equinox has equal amounts of daylight and darkness, the days on which the solstices occur are known for being the longest and shortest days of the year in terms of daylight. During the summer solstice, Earth is tilted toward the sun and receives sunlight for the longest time, resulting in the longest day of the year. During the winter solstice, Earth is tilted away from the sun and receives sunlight for the shortest time, resulting in the shortest day of the year. After the winter solstice, the days start getting longer (receiving more daylight time), reaching an equal amount on the day of the vernal equinox. After the summer solstice, the days start getting shorter (receiving less daylight time), reaching an equal amount again on the autumnal equinox.
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What are some synonyms for vernal equinox?
- spring equinox
What are some words that share a root or word element with vernal equinox?
What are some words that often get used in discussing vernal equinox?
How is vernal equinox used in real life?
The vernal equinox is popularly associated with the first day of spring. It is commonly called the spring equinox.
Take a moment, look outside your window. 🌷
— NASA (@NASA) March 19, 2020
Reminder today is the Autumnal equinox (for us southerners) and vernal equinox for those north of the wall.
Autumn/Spring starts today (by some definitions)
We reach the equinox at 2:49PM AEDT (Sydney time) this afternoon and then we head for winter solstice! https://t.co/w4UzVfhPHf
— Rami Mandow 🏳️🌈 (@CosmicRami) March 19, 2020
Hard to believe that in a little over four weeks we reach the Vernal Equinox. Already it is light beyond five p.m. Spring is around the corner.
— Dr_Tom Pearce (@tompearce49) February 15, 2021
Try using vernal equinox!
True or False?
The vernal equinox occurs on the longest day of the year.
How to use vernal equinox in a sentence
Happy vernal equinox to you dear readers,Lately, it seems we clatter into each new season dragging a dented wagon of jumbled, conflicting feelings.Be Bold, Be Proud, Speak Up: Raising Asian American Daughters Now|Susanna Schrobsdorff|March 21, 2021|Time
Maybe the vernal equinox is what helps get us back on track every spring.What We Learned About Ourselves In the First Year of the Pandemic|Susanna Schrobsdorff|February 28, 2021|Time
For a while yoga and pilates classes were sought out at luxury gyms like Equinox.How Taryn Toomey’s ‘The Class’ Became New York’s Latest Fitness Craze|Lizzie Crocker|January 9, 2015|DAILY BEAST
Their physical footprint is smaller than a traditional Equinox or Crunch Fitness gym -- between 3,000 to 8,000 square feet.Downsize Fitness, the Gym for Overweight Members Only|Daniel Gross|October 14, 2013|DAILY BEAST
Luxury fitness giant Equinox, which acquired SoulCycle in 2011, runs on the same model.SoulCycle Is a Booming Exercise Chain for the 1 Percent|Filipa Ioannou|July 19, 2013|DAILY BEAST
The newly-vernal sun beat down hot last Friday afternoon in the Palestinian West Bank village of Bi'lin.After Victory, Palestinian Village Runs Into A Wall|Ali Gharib|April 2, 2013|DAILY BEAST
He'll describe a bank of stationary cyclists in the window of a New York Sports Club, then the same again in an Equinox.
But, before the equinox, disease began to make fearful havoc in the little community.The History of England from the Accession of James II.|Thomas Babington Macaulay
Happy it was beyond any other time, except perhaps a few vernal days of boyhood, but it was unmarked by any incidents.Julian Home|Dean Frederic W. Farrar
It took them nearly two hours to get there, as they rowed leisurely, and enjoyed the luxury of the vernal air.Eric, or Little by Little|Frederic W. Farrar
When the vernal or autumnal storms delay to break, they are gathering strength; hoarding up their fury for more sure destruction.Toilers of the Sea|Victor Hugo
We now begin to expect our vernal migration of ring-ousels every week.The Natural History of Selborne, Vol. 1|Gilbert White
British Dictionary definitions for vernal equinox
- astronomy the point, lying in the constellation Pisces, at which the sun's ecliptic intersects the celestial equator
- the time at which this occurs as the sun travels south to north (March 21)