Dongzhi (solar term)

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For other uses, see Dongzhi County.
Solar term
 Longi-
tude
 
  Term   Calendar
Spring
315° Lichun 4-5 February
330° Yushui 18-19 February
345° Jingzhe 5-6 March
Chunfen 20-21 March
15° Qingming 4-5 April
30° Guyu 20-21 April
Summer
45° Lixia 5-6 May
60° Xiaoman 21-22 May
75° Mangzhong 5-6 June
90° Xiazhi 21-22 June
105° Xiaoshu 7-8 July
120° Dashu 22-23 July
Autumn
135° Liqiu 7-8 August
150° Chushu 23-24 August
165° Bailu 7-8 September
180° Qiufen 23-24 September
195° Hanlu 8-9 October
210° Shuangjiang 23-24 October
Winter
225° Lidong 7-8 November
240° Xiaoxue 22-23 November
255° Daxue 7-8 December
270° Dongzhi 21-22 December
285° Xiaohan 5-6 January
300° Dahan 20-21 January

The traditional East Asian calendars divide a year into 24 solar terms (節氣). Dōngzhì (pīnyīn) or Tōji (rōmaji) (Chinese and Japanese: 冬至; Korean: 동지; Vietnamese: Đông chí; literally: "winter's extreme") is the 22nd solar term, and marks the winter solstice. It begins when the Sun reaches the celestial longitude of 270° and ends when it reaches the longitude of 285°. It more often refers in particular to the day when the Sun is exactly at the celestial longitude of 270°. In the Gregorian calendar, it usually begins around 21 December (22 December East Asia time) and ends around 5 January.

Along with equinoxes, solstices (traditional Chinese: 至點; simplified Chinese: 至日; literally: "extreme sun") mark the middle of East Asian calendar seasons. Thus, in "冬至", the Chinese character "" means "extreme" and the term for the winter solstice directly signifies the summit of winter, as "midwinter" is used in English.

In China, Dongzhi was originally celebrated as an end-of-harvest festival. Today, it is observed with a family reunion over the long night, when pink and white tangyuan are eaten in sweet broth to symbolise family unity and prosperity.

Pentads[edit]

  • 蚯蚓結, 'Earthworms form knots', referring to the hibernation of earthworms.
  • 麋角解, 'Deer shed their antlers'
  • 水泉動, 'Spring water moves'
Date and Time (UTC)
year begin end
辛巳 2001-12-21 19:21 2002-01-05 12:43
壬午 2002-12-22 01:14 2003-01-05 18:27
癸未 2003-12-22 07:03 2004-01-06 00:18
甲申 2004-12-21 12:41 2005-01-05 06:03
乙酉 2005-12-21 18:34 2006-01-05 11:46
丙戌 2006-12-22 00:22 2007-01-05 17:40
丁亥 2007-12-22 06:07 2008-01-05 23:24
戊子 2008-12-21 12:03 2009-01-05 05:14
己丑 2009-12-21 17:46 2010-01-05 11:08
庚寅 2010-12-21 23:38 2011-01-05 16:54
辛卯 2011-12-22 05:30 2012-01-05 22:43
壬辰 2012-12-21 11:11 2013-01-05 04:33
癸巳 2013-12-21 17:11 2014-01-05 10:24
甲午 2014-12-21 23:03 2015-01-05 16:20

Source: JPL Horizons On-Line Ephemeris System

See also[edit]


Preceded by
Daxue (大雪)
Solar term (節氣) Succeeded by
Xiaohan (小寒)