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Month

A month is a unit of time, used with calendars, which is approximately as long as a natural period related to the motion of the Moon; month and Moon are cognates. The traditional concept arose with the cycle of moon phases; such months (lunations) are synodic months and last approximately 29.53 days. From excavated tally sticks, researchers have deduced that people counted days in relation to the Moon's phases as early as the Paleolithic age. Synodic months, based on the Moon's orbital period with respect to the Earth-Sun line, are still the basis of many calendars today, and are used to divide the year.

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Did you know that there used to only be ten months? That's why September, October, November, and December are months nine, ten, eleven, and twelve, even though their prefixes mean seven, eight, nine and ten.

Contributed by Megan Turner

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