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Monday, 14 November 2016

Spot the Frippet: a perigee-syzygy.

A syzygy is when the sun, the earth and some other celestial body lie in a straight line.

This might mean that we on earth can see the other celestial body, or not, depending upon the order in which they arrange themselves. 

Luckily for us, today we can see the other celestial body in question, and it's the most splendid and beautiful other celestial body there is (yes, our lovely moon). Not only that, but the moon is itself at its most splendid and beautiful because today the moon is at its perigee, which means it's the closest to the earth it's going to get (221,525 miles) and we haven't seen its like for nearly seventy years.

Today the moon will look the biggest it ever does (and it will look at its very largest when it is close to the horizon).

If you are not a fan of wonderful words like perigee-syzygy then, well, you are probably in the wrong place; but if you've got here by accident then you might like to know that this perigee-syzygy is also sometimes called a supermoon (the astrologer Richard Nolle coined this term in 1979. He also claimed that a supermoon is associated with earthquakes, but he's only an astrologer and so he plainly dear...poor New Zealand!).  

Anyway, I saw the moon rise yesterday, and it was amazing and beautiful, and today it will be even better. 

May the clouds part for you, and may the moon shine upon you, wherever in the world you may be.

Moon over Umaid Bhawan Palace, June 23rd 2013.,

Spot the Frippet: today's perigee-syzygy of the earth-moon-sun system. Syzygy comes from the Greek suzugos, yoked together, from zugon, yoke. Perigee comes from the Greek peri, near, plus gea, earth.

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