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What They Say In New England
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IF there is a circle around the moon, that is a sign it is going to storm. The number of stars you can see within this circle shows how many days distant the storm is. There is some sense in this, in that there would be no circle were the air not hazed with moisture, and the thicker the moisture, of course the fewer the stars that can be seen within the circle — or anywhere else for that matter — and the nearer the storm.

Look at the moon some night and say, —

"I see the moon, the moon sees me;
The moon sees somebody I want to see."

Then name the person you wish to see, and in a day or two you will see that person.

You mustn't sow onions in the new of the moon. They won't amount to much if you do.

Plant corn in the old of the moon. It will ear out better.

When you see the new moon, jingle the money in your pocket, and you will have money until the next moon comes.

What you are doing when you first see the new moon, you will do much of while the moon lasts.

When the moon changes, expect a change of weather.

Never expect much of a storm in the old of the moon.

Plant beans in the old of the moon so that they won't run to vines.

Always set out the slips for your house-plants in the new of the moon in August. "They always do so much better," you will never regret it.

Some say that no work prospers unless begun in the new of the moon.

When the new moon appears, observe whether you can hang a powder-horn on its curve or not. If you can, the month will be a pleasant one. If you cannot, the month will be wet.

This, in the days of the fathers, was known as "An old Injun sign."

It was put in words like these: "If the Indian finds he can hang his powder-horn on the new moon, he takes it down, and goes off for a hunt. If he can't, then he stays at home." The idea is that the moon is the place whence rains come — that it is a sort of dish which, when sufficiently level, retains the water, but when too much tipped up, allows it to run over the edge.

Wish on the new moon, and you will get whatever you wish for.

Have your hair cut in the new of the moon and it will come out fine and nice.

"When I trim Ben's whiskers and cut his hair in the new of the moon, it grows out as fast again."

The nearer it is to noon when the moon changes, the nearer the next storm is.

But —

The nearer to midnight,
The fairer the weather.

If, when you first catch sight of the new moon, you see it over your right shoulder, it is a sign of good luck. If the moon is seen over the left shoulder, it is a sign of bad luck. If you see it straight in front of you, it is a sign you are to have a fall. There is a jingle for this last calamity which says, —

Moon in the face,
Open disgrace.

Kiss the first person you meet after you see the new moon, and you can get whatever you wish for. At any rate, you will at the very least get a present within a month.

Do not kill hogs in the full of the moon. The pork will surely "shrink bilin' in the pot if you do." Neither will you get as much lard when you try the fat.

Kill hogs only in the old of the moon, so that the pork will swell in the spider.

A girl's hair will grow much better if she is particular to cut it off a little each new moon.

Of the moon's influence on crops, hair-growing, and such things, John Burroughs says: "A second thought must convince one of the absurdity of these notions; since we always have the moon with us, whether we see it or not, and its effect on the earth in causing the tides is just as marked one time as another. If the moon really grew in the sky, and then faded away again, as to the eye alone it appears to do; if the moon was really only the fragment of the sphere, the half-moon only what the eye reports it to be, etc., — its influence might be much more marked at some times than at others. But we know the full orb passes over us every day, though not always visible. We know the tides are higher when the sun and moon pull together than when they are in opposition; but that these circumstances have any effect on vegetation there is no proof.

"The notion that there is a dry moon and a wet moon is equally erroneous; since it is always dry on some parts of the continent, and always wet in some other parts, or in some other country, and the one moon serves for all. When New England and New York are burning up, the Western or Southern States are usually being drowned out."

When the moon is far north, expect cold weather. When it is far south, expect warm weather.

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