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What Is the Winter Solstice and How Do We Celebrate It?

November 28, 2017 | By Mason Roberts

The Winter Solstice is a time of importance throughout the world and has been since ancient times. But what is the Winter Solstice exactly? Here are some quick facts about the Winter Solstice and when and how it's has been observed over the years.   

What Is the Winter Solstice?

The solstice is a day with the shortest period of daylight and the longest night of the year. This is due to the fact that the earth has one of its poles at its maximum tilt away from the sun. The pole facing away from the sun is the one that is experiencing winter at that time of the year.

When Is the Winter Solstice?

Although we recognize the Winter Solstice as a full day, it is actually only a short moment in time. Depending on where you are in the Northern Hemisphere, the length of sunlight will vary.

The Winter Solstice happens twice per year: once on December 21st in the Northern Hemisphere, and once in June in the Southern Hemisphere.

On December 21st, the city of Moscow only sees the sun for 7 hours, whereas Hong Kong has sunlight for 10 hours. This is one of the most intriguing parts of the Winter Solstice. You may have also heard the Winter Solstice referred to as “midwinter”, “extreme of winter”, or the “shortest day.”

A Brief History of the Winter Solstice

Although this may seem like just another day, many cultures find this day to have very significant meaning such as rebirth, or the beginning of the holidays.

Related: Want to learn how to use a cash advance to advance this year? Click here to learn more! 

It's Been Around Since Neolithic Times

In fact, many cultural traditions began from the Winter Solstice. This day was very important for even neolithic people as suggested by the layout of certain ancient monuments. It was the only way that they knew that winter was about to come.

Stonehedge Is Believed to Be Related to the Winter Solstice

For example, the famous monument known as the Stonehenge is thought to have been created for this exact day. When the winter solstice occurs, it passes directly through The Great Trilithon (the main piece of the Stonehenge).

Why Was the Winter Solstice Important?

So, why would neolithic people create such a monument? This was a way to show them exactly when winter was about to occur so they could prepare for the starvation they would soon endure due to such cold months.

But why mark the Winter Solstice at all? The Winter Solstice was a huge celebration in which the people of this era would get together to have their last large feast of the year. They would slaughter the cattle and enjoy their final day of plenty.

How Will You Celebrate?

Now that you know a little more about this holiday, you may think, "I don't have the same famine problems that they did at this time. How am I supposed to celebrate this holiday?"

Celebrate with the Ones You Love

Well, as you have read above, the Winter Solstice was a day that family and friends got together to enjoy a large meal together. This is something we are still able to do.

We can get together with our friends and family and give thanks for the blessings and abundance of food that we have, as well as the holidays to come.

Throw a Winter Solstice Potluck

If you want to celebrate the Winter Solstice, invite over your friends and family. You can have a Winter Solstice potluck and ask everyone to bring over some food that they'd like to share. Tell everyone that you are thankful for them, and give thanks to the bounty of food that you have, too.

How Can Installment Loans Help?

If after reading this article, this is something that you are very interested in but cannot afford, you may want to look into installment loans.

Mississippi installment loans are easy and quick to pay back, and should not set you back financially. These small loans can help you throw a nice get-together and also have some extra for the coming holidays.

Happy Winter Solstice, and Happy Holidays!