# What is the difference between the solar and lunar calendars?

A solar year—the time it takes Earth to orbit the sun—lasts around 365 days, while a lunar year, or 12 full cycles of the moon, is roughly 354 days. In these calendars, a month is still defined by the moon, but an extra month is added periodically to stay close to the solar year. The first month of the solar calendar is January, the second February, and so on.

The first month of the lunar calendar is Gibeon, which is now known as August. The last month is Kitairos-Sabat, which is now known as May.

Lunar months were originally based on the phases of the moon, but today they are calculated based on the position of the moon in relation to Earth. Because of this, the date when each new moon is born changes every 32 years at most.

New Year's Day occurs on a different day in the solar and lunar calendars - January 1st is considered New Year's Day according to the solar calendar, but August 8th is used instead in the lunar calendar. The same principle applies to New Years Eve; December 31st is considered New Years Eve according to the solar calendar, but July 4th is used instead in the lunar calendar.

## Which is longer, a solar year or a lunar year quizlet?

In contrast to a lunar year, a solar year consists of 12 months of 29–30 days each, for a total of 354–355 days. A lunar year has 13 months that are 29–30 days long, making it longer than 365 days. A day on the Moon is about 384 miles (621 km) away from Earth.

Lunar years and solar years have different lengths because the Moon does not stay exactly at the same place in its orbit around Earth; instead, it moves farther or closer over time. As a result, the amount of time it takes for the Moon to complete one full orbit of the Earth changes called "lunar eccentricity". The average distance of the Moon from Earth over time is 508,000 miles (804,000 km), but at its closest it gets as close as 373,000 miles (619,000 km) and at its farthest it stays 784,000 miles (1243,000 km) away.

During a single lunar month, the Moon's position with respect to the Earth changes because of this distance variation. If we look at all the lunations together, they form a cycle which comes every 31–32 months, but the length of each lunar month varies from 29 or 30 days to 28 or 29 days.

This means that every four years or so, a month lasts either just under or just over 30 days.

## How is the orbit of the moon similar to a solar year?

The moon's orbit offers a cycle of phases that we can rely on month after month, year after year. Lunar calendars, such as the Islamic calendar, use the moon to mark the months, with 12 months defining a year. A solar year, like a calendar year, is based on cycles and orbits—in this case, the Earth's orbit around the sun. The moon's orbit is almost exactly identical to the time it takes for us to go around the sun: about 27 days at the distance of the moon from the earth. This means that if you could watch the moon pass over a fixed point on Earth every day for a year, then come back to that same place a year later, you would see it has changed position relative to other stars and the Earth.

Lunar months vary in length between 29 and 30 days, but this is only because February has 28 instead of 31 days. If lunar months were exactly 30 days long, there would be no change in the position of the Moon relative to the stars during a single year. As it is, the moon always appears to move across the sky; it just does so more slowly than once every 30 days.

The average distance of the moon from the Earth is about 149 million km (93 million miles). At this distance, the gravitational force of the moon is exactly equal to its gravitational pull, so there is no need for us to use any energy to keep the moon in orbit.

## Is the lunar solar cycle 33 years long?

A lunar month is 29.53 days long. So you're at 354 days after 12 lunar months. This is less than the 365 days required for the Earth to circle the Sun. The lunar cycle takes 33 years to return to its initial location.

The last full moon of 2012 was on December 31st. The next new moon is on July 2nd, 2014.

The lunar eclipse on January 21st, 2009 came around late in the night when most people were asleep. Most did not see the eclipse because it happened during a day with no moon and another evening approach by then.

Lunar eclipses are visible on half of the planet. They can be seen over almost all of North America, South America, Australia, New Zealand, India, and Asia except China and Japan.

They can only be observed from certain locations across Europe and Africa. These include: western France, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Syria, and Iraq. The area of visibility is called the Moon's Umbral Side.

Lunar eclipses are important to watch because they allow us to see inside our nearest neighbor. The Earth's shadow crosses the face of the moon as it passes over each point on its orbit. This leaves a dark spot where there would otherwise be sunlight.

## How does the solar calendar work?

Any date system based on the seasonal year of about 365 1/4 days, the time it takes the Earth to rotate once around the Sun, is referred to as a solar calendar. They made a 365-day calendar out of 12 months of 30 days each, with 5 days added at the end of the year. This is called a leap year.

Our current lunar calendar is based on the moon's monthly cycle of phases. It is this that gives us the term "lunar month" for such a period - the average length of which is 29 or 30 days. However, because the moon's orbit is not exactly circular but rather elliptical, this leads to differences in how many days are contained in each lunar month. The amount of time it takes the Moon to go from perigee (closest point to Earth) to apogee (farthest point from Earth) varies between 354 and 359 days. Because these two periods differ by five days, there needs to be a way to account for this variation. The solution was to have two calendars, one based on the moon and one based on the sun. These would run simultaneously until something happened on one of them that caused someone to notice that they were not matching up. At that point, the person counting back from the date on the sun signal tower to find out what day it was could decide which calendar to follow: the solar one or the lunar one.

## Why are months based on the moon?

The conventional definition evolved from the lunar phase cycle; such lunar months ("lunations") are synodic months that last around 29.53 days. Synodic months, which are based on the Moon's orbital period with regard to the Earth-Sun line, are still used to divide the year in many calendars today. The word "month" comes from the Latin mensis, meaning "a month."

Lunar months were originally defined as periods between successive full or new moons. Because the average distance of the Moon from the Earth is about 400 miles (640 km), each month lasts about 29 and a half days. However, due to tidal forces, the actual length of a lunar month is about 29 and a quarter days.

Lunar months were first used by the Babylonians, who counted back three and a half years at a time when the approximation was not important. The Hebrews adopted this method, and it has been retained by many cultures throughout history. Lunar months were also used by some ancient Indian, Greek, and Roman astronomers. Although tropical months do not follow a fixed pattern, they are usually associated with the phases of the Moon -- although in some cases this is because there were simply not enough days in a month to complete a full cycle of the Moon.

In the modern world, solar months are used instead. These are calculated by adding 10.5 days to the number of lunar months since January 1st.

##### Martha Flock

Martha Flock has always been fascinated with how people are connected to each other through time, space, energy, love or light. After her own personal experiences in life-altering moments led her on a quest to discover more about herself and others in this realm of being human she decided to become an astrologer so that she could help others understand their own journey better.