Litha - Calendar of Revelry and Sacred Days

The Element Encyclopedia of Witchcraft: The Complete A-Z for the Entire Magical World - Judika Illes 2005

Calendar of Revelry and Sacred Days

The Wiccan sabbat that corresponds to the Summer Solstice and thus to Midsummer’s and St John’s Eve, is Litha. However, unlike Midsummer’s, there is no fixed calendar date. Rather Litha is celebrated at the exact conjunction of the solstice, on whatever day it falls—approximately June 21st—when the sun is at its height, the longest day of the year.

The name “Litha” seems to derive from the ancient Germanic calendar, which was apparently divided six-fold rather than twelve-fold as is the modern Western calendar. Each year was divided into 60-day tides, what might be considered a “double-month.” Litha seems to have named the summer tide. (See also Midsummer’s Eve and Ivan Kupalo.)