Mercury will spend most of December within the japanese pre-dawn sky descending sunward after the best western elongation in late November. Because of Mercury’s place north of the morning ecliptic, this has been a superb look for Northern Hemisphere observers, and a poor one for these within the Southern Hemisphere. Early within the month, the most effective viewing occasions for mid-northern latitude observers will happen between 6 and seven a.m. native time. By mid-December, the optimum viewing time will lower to about 30 minutes centered on 7 a.m. native time. For the ultimate week of the month, Mercury will probably be too near the solar for statement. Seen in a telescope throughout December, the planet will wax from a 71% illuminated disk on December 1 to almost full. In the meantime, Mercury’s obvious disk diameter will shrink by 25%. On the morning of December 25, the outdated crescent moon will land 1.5 levels to the left (celestial northeast) of Mercury, however the duo will probably be engulfed within the morning twilight.