University of Tasmania
1890-Nowell-moon_affect_rainfall.pdf (1.52 MB)

Do the changes of the moon affect the rainfall?

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-11-22, 10:39 authored by Edwin Cradock Nowell
The idea that the changes of the moon do affect the rainfall has widely prevailed from the earliest ages.
Sailors especial]y are great believers in the influence of the moon on the weather.
Dr. R. J. Mann, vice-president of the Meteorological Society, in an article on "High Clouds and Moonshine," in "Science for All," part 52, says: "Amongst the long prevalent notions that have been held concerning the changes of the weather, there are, perhaps, none that have been more generally entertained and cherished than those which connect them with what are termed the changes, or, in other words, recurring phases of illumination of the moon.
The moon, as a matter of fact, does produce a physical influence upon the earth, but it is an influence of an altogether different kind to the one which is implied by this popular piece of weather delusion.
Seeing that the statements of scientific men and the popular notions on the subject of the moon's influence on the weather seemed to be at variance, I resolved to investigate the matter for myself; and accordingly in 1880 I began to keep a meteorological journal in a rough way, and have continued it up to the present time. Having now ten years' observations to work upon, I thought I might safely proceed to ascertain what conclusions might be drawn from them, and with that view prepared table B appended to this paper.
My observations, as thus tabulated, give the following results for the ten years from 1880 to 1889.
So far as these periods, taken separately, go, we cannot discover any law of relation between the changes, or quarters, of the moon, and the rain-fall.


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Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania





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In 1843 the Horticultural and Botanical Society of Van Diemen's Land was founded and became the Royal Society of Van Diemen's Land for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science in 1844. In 1855 its name changed to Royal Society of Tasmania for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science. In 1911 the name was shortened to Royal Society of Tasmania..

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