Today, according to my little diary, is the day of the winter solstice (15:54 UTC, if you want to get technical). Many a time and oft have I read of Midwinter, and its more popular cousin, Midsummer. Picture my astonishment, therefore, on discovering that these are simply different names for the winter and summer solstices.
Which seems bizarre. The only way in which the solstice is the same thing as the middle of winter is that it’s the shortest day of the year. And yes, short days are associated with winter.
But are they what winter is primarily known for? No. What do you think of when you think of winter? Cold, right? Is Midwinter the middle of the cold season? Not even close. One could be excused for thinking it the beginning of the cold season.