The Moon has inspired mankind from the very beginning of our existence. Although the word "moon" can represent any natural satellite that orbits a planet, when we talk about "The Moon" we are speaking of the only Earth orbiting celestial body, sometimes called "Luna". The Moon is about 384,500 kilometers (238,930 miles) from the Earth and has a diameter of 3,476 kilometres (2,160 miles).
It has a synchronous rotation with Earth, which means that one side of the Moon (the "near side") is permanently turned towards Earth. The other side is of course, "The Dark Side of The Moon". I think we're all familiar with the album of the same name by Pink Floyd, which also has the distinciton of being the album that has spent the most time on the Billboard charts.
The fascination with the Moon started long before Pink Floyd. It has been the inspiration for poetry, paintings, songs and even whole religions over the history of man. Humans have looked upon the moon and pondered it, as well as our own existence, for eons. Many believe that a 5,000 year old rock carving found at Knowth, Ireland represents the Moon, in which case, it is the earliest depiction yet discovered.
Some ancient lunar dieties include Selene, Phobe, Artemis, Luna, Diana, Nana, Thoth, Tsuki-yomi and Tecciztecati and there are volumes of folklore associated with the Moon including that it's responsible for insanity. Thus the words "lunatic" or "loony".
Even today, after we have walked on the Moon and know exactly what it is, it continues to be and always will be, a great inspiration to songwriters across the world.
The following playlist contains great songs written about or inspired by the Moon:
- Pink Floyd
- The Moon