History of The Spring: What is the Vernal Equinox?

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In Colorado we have a saying, we begin the first day of Spring in the same way we began the Fall: with snow. This symmetry is relevant as both the beginning of Spring and Fall coincide with the . This word is made up of two Latin root words andmeaning “equal night” referring to the fact that daylight and night time are equal in duration.


This year, the vernal equinox (Spring) occurs on March 20 at 10:28 am UTC. This means Temps Universel Coordonne, or if you don’t speak French, roughly equivalent to if you’re British, or if you’re a pilot. The Autumnal Equinox occurs 6 months later. Since each equinox occurs at the same time whether in the northern hemisphere as the southern hemisphere, though the seasons are reversed, it is becoming common to call the (northern) vernal equinox the March Equinox and the Autumnal Equinox the September Equinox.


— except in Colorado — so also in most other parts of the US do we see the blossoming of new life. Many of the holidays of this season, both pagan and religious, point to new life.

In Gaelic or Celtic tradition marks the beginning of this season, even though it usually falls in February. This points to the anticipation of the birth of Spring lambs, though in the US it usually points to Groundhog Day. usually ends this season in the Celtic calendar, known popularly as May Day. In the Christian calendar, Easter is the highpoint of the Spring festivals, celebrating “new life” in the observation of the resurrection of Jesus.

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Colorado Springs Crocuses

Bill Petro, your friendly neighborhood historian

Silicon Valley Tech Exec: Cloud, Data Storage, Automation. Author of fascinating articles about history, tech trends, andpop culture. Blog: http://billpetro.com

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