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Eclipse Sources

Eclipse Sources


Update: 07/25/09.
This list of resources was temporarily removed because most of the links had long since disappeared. Some aren't even available on the Internet Archive. However, for those who wish to see the sources of the 1999 article on eclipses and solar eclipses, here they are:

From About.com

[http://space.about.com/msubeclipses.htm] Eclipses
From the About.com Guide to space, a list of resources on eclipses.

[http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa080999.htm] The Last Solar Eclipse of the Century
From the About.com Guide to German, this feature, subtitled "Die letzte Sonnenfinsternis des Jahrhunderts" tells when and where to watch the eclipse in German and provides the time difference for those of us in the US so we don't miss out.

In the News

[http://abcnews.go.com/sections/science/DailyNews/eclipsehistory990806.html] Pinpointing Where Shadows Passed Eons Ago
From ABC News. A 4th C B.C. Chinese philosopher wrote, "The sun rose at night." This reference to an eclipse enabled a modern geologist to pinpoint the date of a battle ( Sept. 24, 1912 B.C.).

[http://www.tampabayonline.net/news/news101m.htm] Through history, eclipses have brought fear
Article from Tampa Bay Online. Monsters devoured ths sun according to many. To the Norse, a wolf; to the Vietnamese, a giant frog; to the Siberians, a vampire. Chippewa shot flaming arrows to rekindle the sun; Aztecs sacrificed hunchbacks to Xolotl.


[http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/GreekScience/Students/Chris/TIME2.html] A Brief History of Time
The Pythagoreans were the first to understand that the sun was the center of our solar system -- a discovery that allowed them to understand the nature of a solar eclipse. Anaxagoras, a geocentrist, was the first to explain a lunar eclipse as caused by the earth's blocking the sun's light.

[http://spacelink.nasa.gov/NASA.News/NASA.News.Releases/Previous.News.Releases/89.News.Releases/89%2D06.News.Releases/89%2D06%2D13] Chinese Artifact Provides Clue To Earth's Rotation
Tortoise shell oracle bones were used by seers during China's Shang Dynasty in the 14th century B.C. to record questions and answers to weather questions. One bone says: "Diviner Ko asks if the following day would be sunny or not" and on the reverse side, it continues with a description of a solar eclipse: " ... 52nd day, fog until next dawn. Three flames ate the Sun, and big stars were seen."
Using this information, researchers have fixed the exact date of a solar eclipse in China in 1302 B.C.

[http://www.earthview.com/ages/ages.htm] Eclipses Throughout the Ages
Sections (adapted from Bryan Brewer's Book on eclipses) on [http://www.earthview.com/ages/myths.htm] Eclipse Myths and Symbolism, [http://www.earthview.com/ages/stonehenge.htm] Stonehenge: Eclipse Computer?, [http://www.earthview.com/ages/wingedsun.htm] The Winged Sun over Egypt, and [http://www.earthview.com/ages/history.htm] Eclipses in History and Literature.

[gopher://babel.its.utas.edu.au/00/Publications/Electronic%20Antiquity%20:%20Communicating%20The%20Classics/3,7-May1997/(02)Articles/Worthen-Herodotus] Herodotus's Report On Thales' Eclipse
From Electronic Antiquity. Thomas Worthen suggests that Herodotus' account of the fabled prediction by Thales is, at best, confused. The URL for this link is [gopher://babel.its.utas.edu.au/00/Publications/Electronic Antiquity : Communicating The Classics/3,7-May1997/(02)Articles/Worthen-Herodotus.]

[http://www.csudh.edu/phenom%5Fstudies/greekphil/greek01.htm] History Of Philosophy In The Classical Period (600 B.C.-600 A.D.)
Thales predicted a total solar eclipse which was visible in Asia Minor in the midst of the battle between Media and Lydia.
Herodotus mentioned in his Historia, Book 1, 74: "Suddenly a total solar eclipse took place in the midst of the battle between Lydia and Media. Thales of Miletus had predicted that that solar eclipse would occur at that time and at that place."
Today we can calculate the dates of the total solar eclipses which could be seen in Asia Minor where that battle took place: September 30, 610, June 21, 597 and May 28, 585. In his Natural History, Pliny says of Thales: " ...it was the fourth year during the 48th panathenaia."
Since the first Olympic Games took place in 776, the 48th Olympic Games took place approximately 588 B.C. -- in other words, the May 29th, 585 date.

[http://www.phys.virginia.edu/classes/109N/lectures/gkastr1.html] How High the Moon
Aristarchus of Samos (310-230 B.C.) determined the distance to the moon using the shadow of a lunar eclipse.

[http://www.stellarimages.com/kidseclipse/pages/a1b3c5d0.htm] Myths, Stories, and Historical References
Stories of the dragons that caused eclipses in China and India, Thales' predicted eclipse that stopped a battle between Lydians and Medes, and an eclipse of Biblical proportions. From Bryan Brewer.

[http://www.sentex.net/%7Etcc/fgreek.html] The Rigid Sky in Greek Philosophy
Anaximander thought the sun was a circle 28 times larger than the earth, like a chariot wheel with a hollow, opened rim full of fire. When the opening is closed, there's an eclipse.

[http://www.exploratorium.edu/eclipse/dragon.html] The Sun Eating Dragon
Dragons, omens and the scientific understanding of eclipses.

[http://www.dur.ac.uk/Classics/histos/1998/stephenson.html] The Total Solar Eclipse Described by Plutarch [1]
Evidence for different solar, including annular, eclipses that Plutarch may have witnessed.

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