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Black Moon is a reference to witchcraft which bears no significance to astronomy. There is a range of, often contradictory, definitions of a black moon, some suggesting it is when there are two dark cycles of the moon in any given calendar month, and others where no full moon is present in a calendar month, being contradictory as one can only ever happen in a February, and the other can only ever occur in any other month. It is treated by wicca as a powerful astrological period in which any magical works performed would be more effective.
A black moon can only be visible during the daytime all day.
Black moons can only happen on any month that has 2 new moons.
The difference between a dark moon and a black moon is this:
Dark moon: 0.99%-0.01% visible(waning crescent) Black Moon: 0% visible New Moon: 0.01%-0.99% visible(waxing crescent)
It has also occasionally been applied to at least four different situations:
|1. The second occurrence of a new moon in a calendar month.||Cannot occur in February. Analogous to the common calendrical definition of a blue moon for months with two full moons.|
|2. The third new moon in a season that has four of them.||Analogous to the Farmers' Almanac definition of a blue moon for seasons with four full moons.|
|3. The absence of a full moon in a calendar month.||Can only occur in February, thus January and March will each have a second full moon (a calendrical blue moon).|
|4. The absence of a new moon in a calendar month.||Can only occur in February, thus January and March will each have a second new moon (see definition 1).|
In myth and folklore the full moon of each month is given a name. In many cases the waxing moon and waning moon are also given names. There are many variations, but the following list gives the most widely known names:
- January - Wolf moon, Cold Moon, Chaste Moon
- February - Snow moon
- March - Sap moon
- April - Growing moon
- May - Flower moon
- June - Mead moon
- July - Hay moon
- August - Corn moon
- September - Harvest moon
- October - Hunter's moon, Blood Moon, Falling Leaf Moon
- November - Beaver moon, Mourning Moon
- December - Winter moon
- Odenwald, Sten. "Is there a name for the second New Moon in a month?". Ask the Astronomer. Retrieved 2008-10-08.