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The Moon, just shy of full phase, rises dramatically into the late-afternoon eastern sky Thursday, February 17, at around 5:20 p.m. &mdash some 20 minutes before the time of sunset. The following morning, the moon is closer to true full phase, and you can watch it fade in the dawn’s glare while it sinks into the Pacific. Whenever the moon is seen near the horizon, it seems to be larger than life. The effect, called the “moon illusion” is purely psychological. Folk names for the February full moon include “hunger moon,” “ice moon,” “storm moon,” and “wild moon.”

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