Lamp Post Electrical Wiring Question

Greetings! If I happen to cross my black/white wires (UF 12 gauge, 2 wire w/ground) when connecting the UF feed to my lamp, would the breaker trip without the light turning on, or would the lamp light, but then trip the breaker?
I have a situation where the lamp is lighting for ~ 1 second before it trips the breaker....wiring looks OK. Underground short?
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What exactly did happen and when? What do you mean (cross the wires) If you short the black and white (or black and ground) the breaker should trip right then.
If you have the lamp connected it would be on until you shorted the wires and then it might go out all at once or it may dim for that very short time before the breaker tripped.
If you mean you hooked up the black wire to the wrong connection at the light and likewise the with the white wire, normally nothing would happen except you would need to be far more careful when replacing lamps since the treaded part of the lamp and socket would be hot to ground and could kill you.
If you have a dusk to dawn lamp then you have the added complication of the light sensing controller.
If the circuit is on a GFI then you have yet another factor we need to know about.
We need more detailed information.
Note: It would be best if you leave this project alone and be sure the power is off for now. From your question and information provided, it sounds like you might not be the best person to take on this project.

--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
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Joseph, Thanks for the reply. The lamp post has been inactive, but presumably in a working state (all existing wiring remained unchanged by me). I only added a new lamp to the post to get it working again (and wired Black to black, white/white, ground/ground - pretty straightforward).
The problem shows when I flip the switch, the lamp lights briefly, and then goes off. Basement breaker is tripped at that point. There is no GFI in the circuit...Breaker resets OK until switch flipped again. I'm just wondering if the most likely scenario is an underground short (perhaps from edging or aerating), or if my black/white could be crossed at the panel, or maybe the new lamp itself.
wrote:

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Jim Conway wrote:

Before you rent a ditch-witch, four Mexicans, and start digging up the yard, try un-doing what you did to see if the problem persists. Either yea or nay will provide additional clues.
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