Summer, which follows spring and precedes autumn, is the warmest of the four temperate seasons. The earliest dawn and latest sunset occur during or around the summer solstice (approximately 3 days before Midsummer Day), the days are longest and the nights are shortest, with day duration decreasing as the season proceeds following the solstice. The start of summer varies depending on the environment, custom, and culture. In the Northern Hemisphere, it is summer, while in the Southern Hemisphere, it is winter.
The equinoxes and solstices are the center of the seasons from an astronomical standpoint, however astronomical summer is often described as beginning at the solstice, the period of maximum insolation, which is commonly associated with the 21st day of June or December. The meteorological center of the season, which is based on average temperature trends, occurs several weeks after the period of maximum insolation with a varied seasonal lag. Summer is defined by meteorological convention as the months of June, July, and August in the northern hemisphere and December, January, and February in the southern hemisphere.
All seasons are arbitrarily determined to begin at the beginning of a calendar month and terminate at the conclusion of a month, according to meteorological standards. This meteorological definition of summer also corresponds to the widely held belief that summer is the season with the longest (and hottest) days of the year, with daylight predominating. Australia, Austria, Denmark, Russia, and Japan utilize a meteorological calendar to determine the seasons.
Many people in the United Kingdom and Canada use it as well. June, July, and August are the summer months of Ireland, according to Met Éireann, the national meteorological office. Summer, on the other hand, begins on May 1 and concludes on August 1 according to the Irish calendar. In Ireland, school textbooks reflect the cultural convention that summer begins on May 1 rather than the meteorological definition of June 1.
In the northern hemisphere, the sun can emerge at any time throughout the summer. Photo taken at Inari, Finland, during the midnight sun.
Summer days gradually decrease from the equinox to the solstice, thus meteorological summer includes the build-up to the longest day and a reduction following, with summer having many more hours of daylight than spring.
Summer solstice signifies the middle of the seasons, not the beginning, based only on daylight hours. Midsummer is celebrated on the summer solstice, the shortest night of the year, or on a neighboring day that changes according to custom.
Where a seasonal lag of half a season or more is typical, astronomical markers-based reckoning is displaced by half a season. Summer in North America is defined as the time between the summer solstice (typically 20 or 21 June in the Northern Hemisphere) and the fall equinox, according to this approach.
Summer in the United States is typically seen as beginning on Memorial Day weekend (the last weekend in May) and ending on Labor Day (the first Monday in September), more closely aligning with the meteorological definition for portions of the country having four-season weather. The analogous Canadian practice begins one week before Victoria Day (although summer weather vary greatly across Canada’s vast area) and finishes on Labour Day, like in the United States.
Summer begins on or around 5 May, with the jiéq (solar period) known as lxià (), i.e. “foundation of summer,” and finishes on or around 6 August, according to Chinese astronomy.
Summer in southern and southeast Asia, where the monsoon occurs, is more broadly described as the hottest months of the year, March, April, May, and June, ending with the start of the monsoon rains.
Because the temperature lag in the oceanic temperate southern hemisphere is shorter, most nations in this region adopt the meteorological definition of summer, which begins on December 1 and ends on February 28.
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