is one of the eight solar
holidays or sabbats
. It is celebrated on the summer solstice
, which in the northern hemisphere falls near June 21
and in the southern hemisphere near December 21
The holiday is the turning point at which summer reaches its height and the sun shines longest, but at the same time we are reminded that the days will soon begin to shorten.
This holiday is also sometimes called Litha. Its use as the name for this holiday may trace back to its appearance in J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy. Prior to that, "Litha" appears to refer to the entire summer season.
Among the sabbats, Midsummer is preceded by Beltane and followed by Lammas.
See also Wheel of the Year.
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