Why do they call the blue moon the blue moon?

I know its not because of color, so i was just wondering why.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The earliest origin comes from the Dark Ages, where the monasteries were the only places of any "scientific" intellect. In calculating the dates for Lent and Easter, the Clergy identify the Lent Moon. It is thought that historically when the moon's timing was too early, they named an earlier moon as a "betrayer moon," thus the Lent moon came at its expected time. In the written language used by the monks of the time, "betrayer" is written "belewe," and pronounced "blue" (well, close enough).

    However, the common usage of the term "Blue Moon" probably began in 1883, following the eruption of Krakatoa, Indonesia. The volcano put so much dust and gaseous pollution into the atmosphere that the Moon actually looked literally blue. This was so unusual that the term "once in a Blue Moon" was coined. However, Blue Moon was also used in much the same way as the use of "Harvest Moon." There were twelve names for full moons, one for each month, and the name Blue Moon was used in years which had 13 full moons. It referred to the third full moon of the four occurring between an equinox and solstice in that year. The funny part about all this is that a misinterpretation of this calendar led to a July 1943 Sky and Telescope Magazine "Star Quiz," followed by an article in March 1946 which stated that the second full moon in any calendar month was called a Blue Moon -it's this definition which is now part of our language. Incidentally, when Sky and Telescope Magazine finally realized their mistake (or had it pointed out, I don't know which), they tried to blame it on and entry in the 1937 Maine Farmers' Almanac. Whether or not anyone bought the excuse or not didn't matter, because the modern term had already entered common parlance.

    Source(s): Experienced geologist.
  • 1 decade ago

    The earliest recorded English usage of the term "blue moon" was in a 1528 pamphlet violently attacking the English clergy,[2] entitled "Rede Me and Be Not Wrothe" (Read me and be not angry): "Yf they say the mone is belewe / We must believe that it is true" [If they say the moon is blue, we must believe that it is true].

    Some interpret this "blue moon" as relating to absurdities and impossibilities,[3] and a similar moon-related adage was first recorded in the following year: "They would make men beleue ... that þe Moone is made of grene chese" [They would make men believe ... that the moon is made of green cheese].

    An alternative interpretation uses the other Old English meaning of belewe (which can mean "blue" or "betrayer").[4] The church was responsible for the calendar and used the complex computus to calculate the important date of Easter, which is based on the full moon. Lent falls before Easter, starting at the beginning of the Lent moon cycle (late winter moon). The next moon is the egg moon (early spring moon), and Easter usually falls on the first Sunday after the full egg moon. Every one to three years, the Lent and egg moons would come too early. The clergy would have to tell people whether the moon was the Lent moon or a false one, which they may have called a "betrayer moon".

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    google "once in a blue moon" and you'll find the answer.

    The origin of the term "blue moon" is steeped in folklore, and its meaning has changed and acquired new nuances over time.

    But --

    The most literal meaning of blue moon is when the moon (not necessarily a full moon) appears to a casual observer to be unusually bluish, which is a rare event. The effect can be caused by smoke or dust particles in the atmosphere, as has happened after forest fires in Sweden and Canada in 1950 and, notably, after the eruption of Krakatoa in 1883, which caused the moon to appear blue for nearly two years. The particles in the atmosphere have to be about one micrometre in diameter; under these circumstances, long-wavelength light, which appears red to a viewer, is scattered out of the line of sight and short-wavelength light, which appears blue to a viewer, is selectively transmitted into a viewer's eyes.

    the above is from wikipedia, but a better discussion is here:

    http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/objects/m...

  • 5 years ago

    For the best answers, search on this site https://shorturl.im/TTyEJ

    That's not a blue moon. A blue moon happens every two or three years. When the moon is orange it is called a harvest moon. A harvest moon happens when the moon is at its fullest point before it reaches the full moon stage.

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  • 6 years ago

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    RE:

    Why do they call the blue moon the blue moon?

    I know its not because of color, so i was just wondering why.

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  • 1 decade ago

    The second full moon in a month is known as a blue moon.

  • 1 decade ago

    Do you know what a blue moon is? Its when there are 2 full moons in one month. Thats it.

  • 1 decade ago

    Because the moon does actually look blue, duhh.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Anony and the person below him both could be right, but iiloveyoutodeath, don't be rude, you're wrong anyway.

  • Daniel
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    DYS answer is best, although I believe the meaning of the word "rede" in this context means "advise".

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