The April Full Moon will peak in brightness this upcoming Friday, April 19, shortly after the clocks strike noon. In the UK, the Earth’s lunar satellite will reach its Full Moon phase at around 12.12pm BST (11.12am UTC), when viewed from London. Unfortunately, this will happen a whole eight hours before the Moon rises for the night. Keen stargazers will not be able to see the April Pink Moon until after 8.05pm BST (7.05pm UTC) when it slowly creeps over the horizon.
Why is the April Full Moon known as the Pink Moon?
All of the Moon’s fully-lit faces have names linked to the changing seasons and seasonal shifts in the landscape.
These names are largely derived from Native American traditions observed in the eastern parts of the modern day United States.
Tribes such as the Algonquian would keep track of time by giving the Moon’s phases different names.
In June for instance, the Full Moon was dubbed the Strawberry Moon, because the wild fruit was ripe to be collected.
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Pink Moon meaning: The April Full Moon arrives on Friday, April 19 (Image: GETTY)
The December Wolf Moon, on the other hand, was named after packs of hungry wolves howling at the Moon on cold winter nights.
Different cultures have given names to Full Moons across the lunar calendar
Other names such as the July Full Buck Moon or the September Full Harvest Moon would single out a specific animal for hunting or signal the start of the harvest.
The Royal Observatory Greenwich explained; “Over time, different cultures have given names to Full Moons across the lunar calendar.
“Many of the Moon’s nicknames have come to us from Native American culture because for their way of life, the cycles of the lunar phases were just as important a method of timekeeping as the longer solar cycle of the year, as defined by the motion of the Sun.
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“The number of Moon names differs slightly tribe to tribe, but many assign either 12 or 13 Full Moons to the year.”
The April Pink Moon was named after a pretty type of wildflower, which sings small, pink flowers around this time of year.
The ground phlox or creeper phlox is a type of paint native to the eastern parts of the US.
According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac guidebook, the flowers would turn the fields pink as they sprouted.
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Amy Nieskens from the Old Farmer’s Almanac explained: “April’s Full Moon is known as the Full Pink Moon because it heralded the appearance of wild group phlox or moss pink, one of the first Spring flowers.
The April Full Moon is also sometimes recognised as the Egg Moon, Spring Moon or the Fish Moon.
In total, there are 12 or 13 Full Moons, which peak throughout the year. Below are all of their names and dates in 2019.
January 10 – Full Wolf MoonFebruary 9 – Full Snow MoonMarch 21 – Full Worm MoonApril 19 – Full Pink MoonMay 18 – Full Flower MoonJune 17 – Full Strawberry MoonJuly 16 – Full Buck MoonAugust 15 – Full Sturgeon MoonSeptember 14 – Full Harvest MoonOctober 13 – Full Hunter’s MoonNovember 12 – Full Beaver MoonDecember 12 – Full Cold Moon
Pink Moon 2019: Unfortunately, the Moon will not turn pink this week (Image: GETTY)
Pink Moon 2019: The April Full Moon is named after ground phlox flowers (Image: GETTY)
What is the April Pink Moon’s meaning?
The upcoming Full Moon is an important sign in the Christian faith because its arrival helps determine the date of Easter.
Easter always falls after the first Full Moon following the March Equinox.
This year the equinox fell on March 20 around 9.58pm UTC and the Full Moon followed just four hours later.
Because the two events were so close together, Easter will instead fall on the Sunday following the April Full Moon – a late Easter on Sunday, April 21.