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When does Mercury retrograde begin and end in 2023?

Astrology fans believe that Mercury in retrograde has an effect on what happens here on Earth (Getty Images)
Astrology fans believe that Mercury in retrograde has an effect on what happens here on Earth (Getty Images)

Mercury is in retrograde once again and, while your friend who believes in astrology might be panicking, you may wonder – what does it all mean? And is Mercury retrograde even real?

The answer is yes. An apparent retrograde motion is something that actually happens in our solar system.

But whether it has anything to do with what happens here on Earth remains up for debate.

Find out below what happens during Mercury retrograde and the effects it (supposedly) has on our planet.

What is Mercury retrograde?

Mercury retrograde is technically when the smallest planet in our solar system is in an apparent retrograde motion, or moving backwards.

It isn’t actually moving backwards, as planets move forwards in their orbit around only the Sun. Mercury retrograde is actually an illusion caused by Earth’s position in relation to Mercury.

Retrograde happens when a faster-moving planet catches up with and passes a slower-moving one. This creates the illusion that the slower-moving planet is moving backwards.

When will Mercury retrograde next happen?

Mercury Retrograde began again on December 13 and lasts until January 1.

It previously happened between April 21 and May 14 and again between August 23 and September 14.

What do people believe happens during Mercury retrograde?

For people who believe in astrology, Mercury retrograde has a special meaning. Mercury is said to rule communication, so during this time it is said that this can go awry.

Some astrologers (or astrology fans) believe that during Mercury retrograde, miscommunication is prevalent: emails won’t be sent, text mishaps will occur, and mixed signals will be sent.

Mercury retrograde is also said to affect travel: think traffic jams, train delays and missed buses.

Technology is another area said to be controlled by Mercury. Expect technical errors, mechanical breakdowns and computer malfunctions.

Taylor Swift blamed Mercury retrograde for a fall she suffered backstage after fans noticed a cut on her hand at a Houston show.

The singer said on Twitter: “I’m totally fine and it was my fault completely – tripped on my dress hem and fell in the dark backstage while running to a quick change – braced my fall with my palm.

“It was all very Mercury in retrograde coded. Don’t worry about me I’m gooooood.”

That’s if you believe in it all, of course.