The length of the shortest day of the year depends on the location. In the United States, some areas get less than 4 hours of sunshine on the shortest day. In places like Washington and New York, the shortest day lasts for up to 9 1/2 hours.Continue Reading
The shortest day of the year falls on the winter solstice. In the Northern Hemisphere, this is usually between December 20 and December 23. In the Southern Hemisphere, the shortest day is between June 20 and June 22. The December solstice occurs when the North Pole is at its furthest tilt away from the sun.
How much sunlight there is on the shortest day depends on the location and does not necessarily mean the latest sunrise or the earliest sunset. The earliest sunsets usually occur about 2 weeks before the winter solstice and the latest sunrise about 2 weeks afterward. In parts of the Arctic, there is no daylight at all. Variation in the length of sunlight also occurs across the U.S.:
The two most easily available ways to calculate what day a specific date falls on are to either construct a perpetual calendar online or mentally calculate the day. The mental calculation method is called The Marais Formula. Online calculators are numerous, free and come in a number of different formats.Full Answer >
An extra day is added to February every four years to synchronize the Gregorian calendar with the solar calendar. One year in the solar calendar is 5 hours, 48 minutes and 46 seconds longer than one year in the Gregorian calendar, the calendar used by most modern countries.Full Answer >
According to Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, a calendar month is a full month or a specific date in one month that corresponds to the same day in the next. Months were first used in Mesopotamia and revolved around the cycles of the moon.Full Answer >
The change in seasons is caused by the varying angle of the Earth's tilt from one part of the year to another. A common misconception is that the change in seasons is due to the Earth's slightly elliptical orbit bringing the planet closer to the sun in summer, but, as About.com notes, seasons are different in the northern hemisphere and the southern, which are the same distance from the sun.Full Answer >