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Sunday 26th October 2014
Max 15°C | Min 12°C

Where does the term "Indian summer" come from?

Question

Where does the term “Indian summer” come from? Are we in one now?
Luke, Brentford

Answer

** Definitive **
Name: Daniel, Barking
Qualification: From my distant memory
Answer: Jean Hector St Jean referred to the Indian summer as a period in January or February when the thaw would come in and it would be impossible to track the Indian raiding parties that were coming into the new colonies. So an Indian summer has to come after a frost.

Name: Philip, Forest Hill
Qualification: My father served in India after the war
Answer: If you went to Delhi, it was very hot, but at weekends, they would go into the mountains where it is less humid and the temperature at night is much colder. So for them, this is an Indian summer, where you have hot days, no humidity and the temperature drops at night. It’s got nothing to do with seasonality.

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