Super Flower Moon to be visible over Norfolk
- Credit: Rebecca Wiltshire
A Super Flower Moon is expected to brighten the skies over Norfolk this week.
This May, astronomers will be treated to the largest full moon of 2021, with the flower super moon rising.
The moon will be much closer to earth, at 357,462km, meaning it will appear 30pc brighter and 14pc larger than some previous full moons.
The celestial event is expected to take place at 12.13pm on May 26 as the Earth comes exactly between the moon and the sun, a moment called ‘syzygy’ (pronounced siz-eh-gee).
Although this means people in the country will not be able to see the moon at syzygy, the moon will still appear ‘full’ two days afterward.
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Many say the Super Flower Moon gets its name from a group of Native Americans after the flowers that start to blossom at this time of the year. However, labeling the moon comes with a certain amount of cultural baggage.
Dr Darren Baskill, physics and astronomy lecturer at the University of Sussex, said: “People often say that we take our moon names from the ‘Native Americans’, but they weren’t one group of people.
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"There’s a danger of being culturally insensitive here. The USA is a massive landmass and was home to many different types of people.”
Over 1,000 languages are spoken by Native Americans, with their cultures being as diverse as Europeans. This means different Native Americans have different names for the May moon including the ‘field maker’, ‘blossom’, and even the ‘when the horses get fat’ moon.
Lucky watchers across the pond in West America will be able to catch a total lunar eclipse on May 26, but this event will not be visible in the UK.
The next full moon, which some call the ‘Strawberry Moon’, will occur in June 2021 but will unfortunately not be another super moon.