Definition of solstice
1 : either of the two points on the ecliptic at which its distance from the celestial equator is greatest and which is reached by the sun each year about June 21 and December 21
2 : the time of the sun's passing a solstice which occurs about June 21 to begin summer in the northern hemisphere and about December 21 to begin winter in the northern hemisphere
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Recent Examples of solstice from the Web
Astronomical seasons, where summer officially starts on the summer solstice - June 21, are based on the position of Earth in relation to the sun.
Others go by the meteorological definition of June 1, while still others subscribe to the astronomical definition of the summer solstice around June 21.
The solstice officially arrives at 12:24 a.m. ET on June 21, marking the start of summer in the Northern Hemisphere and winter in the Southern Hemisphere.
The summer solstice marks the day with the most hours of sunlight for the entire year.
Sure, meteorologists, geographers, astronomers and calendar makers may wag their fingers and remind us that summer doesn’t officially begin until the solstice on June 20, but nobody likes a know-it-all.
This year, Ramadan occurs during the summer solstice, which features the longest daylight hours of the year.
In 2010, NASA lengthened the spacecraft's mission to operate up to the summer solstice—the longest day of summer in the northern hemisphere and the shortest day of winter in the southern hemisphere.
This will be the first time a lunar eclipse has fallen on the winter solstice since 1638.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'solstice'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
In the Northern Hemisphere, the summer solstice occurs on June 21 or 22 and the winter solstice on December 21 or 22. In the Southern Hemisphere, where the seasons are reversed, the solstices are exactly the opposite. For several days around the time of the solstices, the sun's appearance on the horizon at sunrise and sunset seems to occur at the same spot, before it starts drifting to the north or south again. Solstice gets its shine from sol, the Latin word for "sun." The ancients added sol to -stit- ("standing") and came up with solstitium. Middle English speakers shortened solstitium to solstice in the 13th century.
SOLSTICE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of solstice for English Language Learners
: one of the two times during the year when the sun is farthest north or south of the equator
SOLSTICE Defined for Kids
Definition of solstice for Students
: the time of the year when the sun passes overhead the farthest north (summer solstice, about June 22) or south (winter solstice, about December 22) of the equator
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