Happy Winter Solstice

tarrant fairy lanternsEach hemisphere celebrates its winter solstice  on the shortest day and longest night of the year, when the sun’s daily maximum elevation in the sky is the lowest. The winter solstice itself lasts only a moment in time, so other terms are used for the day on which it occurs, such as “midwinter”, or “the shortest day”. In the northern hemisphere this occurs around 21-22 December and in the southern hemisphere 21-22 June each year. It is often a time when people celebrate by lighting lanterns. The illustration here is “Fairy Lanterns” by M.W. Tarrant.

According to Wikipedia, Margaret Winifred Tarrant was born in Battersea, south London, in 1888. She was an English illustrator specializing in illustrations of fairy-like children and religious subjects for children’s books, postcards, calendars and print reproductions

The daughter of landscape painter Percy Tarrant, she studied art at  Clapham High School and then later at the Clapham School of Art. She tried her hand at teaching but art was her first love.  She continued her art studies at Heatherley’s School of Art, and then later at the Guildford School of Art in 1935. By the age of 20 she had launched her career with an edition of Charles Kingsley’s The Water Babies; and continued until the early 1950s. She died on 29th July, 1959.

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