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ABBREVIATIONS
Seasons
The seasons are defined astronomically as follows:
Spring from the vernal equinox to the summer solstice
Summer from the summer solstice to the autumnal equinox
Autumn from the autumnal equinox to the winter solstice
Winter from the winter solstice to the vernal equinox
The times when the seasons start in 2019 are:
Northern Hemisphere
Vernal Equinox
March 20d 21h 58m GMT
Summer Solstice
June 21d 15h 54m GMT
Autumnal Equinox
September 23d 07h 50m GMT
Winter Solstice
December 22d 04h 19m GMT
Southern Hemisphere
Autumnal Equinox
March 20d 21h 58m GMT
Winter Solstice
June 21d 15h 54m GMT
Vernal Equinox
September 23d 07h 50m GMT
Summer Solstice
December 22d 04h 19m GMT
The longest day of the year, measured from sunrise to sunset, is at the summer solstice. The longest day in the UK will fall on 21 June in 2019.
The shortest day of the year, measured from sunrise to sunset, is at the winter solstice. The shortest day in the UK will fall on 22 December in 2019.
The equinox is the point at which day and night are of equal length all over the world.
In popular parlance, the seasons in the northern hemisphere comprise the following months:
Spring
March, April, May
Summer
June, July, August
Autumn
September, October, November
Winter
December, January, February
The March equinox can fall as early as 19 March but this has not happened since 1796 and it will not happen again until 2044. This equinox in 2007 was on 21 March, however in 2008 it occurred on 20 March and will not revert to 21 March again until 2102.
In 2008 the June solstice occurred on 20 June, the first time since 1897. The June solstice in 1975 was on 22 June, but it will not occur on this date again until 2203.