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Summer Facts

Warmest of the four temperate seasons

  • Summer is the warmest season of the year.
  • It falls in the months of June, July, and August in the northern hemisphere and the whole months of December, January, and February in the southern hemisphere.
  • Key summer months have Roman origins. June is named after Juno, who was the wife of Jupiter. Marc Antony named July after Julius Caesar and August was named after Caesar’s nephew, known as Augustus.
  • The first day of summer is known as the summer Solstice and in the US it falls on June 20 or June 21 each year, depending on when the sun is furthest north of the equator.
  • Length of the day increases gradually from Equinox to Solstice and summer days progressively shorten after the solstice.
  • Schools and universities typically have a summer break to take advantage of the warmer weather and longer days.
  • People in the Southern Hemisphere have their longest day of summer in December.
  • School summer vacations were invented by educator Horace Mann in 1840.
  • Summer vacations in other parts of the world are much shorter than in the US.
  • France's Eiffel Tower can grow by more than 6 inches in summer due to the expansion of the iron on hot days.
  • The oldest song sung as a round in English is about summer. It’s called Summer is Icumen In.
  • The word honeymoon has associations with summer. The Pagans used that name for the first full moon in June because they drank fermented honey (mead) as part of summer wedding celebrations.
  • Watermelon eaten during summer is actually not a fruit, but a vegetable.
  • The first Summer Olympic Games were held in 1896 in Athens. Women were first allowed to compete in 1900.
  • On September 13, 1922, the temperature in the shade in the Libyan Desert reached 136 degrees Fahrenheit. This is hot enough to fry an egg on a rock!
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