Partial solar eclipse 2018, 5 myths from around the world that you need to know
On August 11, a partial solar eclipse will take place and will be visible from parts of the northern hemisphere. It will last for around 3 hours 30 minutes and start from 1.32pm and last till 5.02pm, but won’t be visible across India. A partial solar eclipse should not be viewed with bare eyes, and special glasses should be used.
During a solar eclipse, the Moon blocks the Sun’s path and stops sunlight from reaching Earth. But when the Moon covers just a portion of the Sun, it causes a partial solar eclipse, and the Sun is visible as a crescent. You can check out the path of the eclipse from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Centre (GSFC) map.
Traditionally, solar eclipses are believed to be inauspicious as the Sun is not clearly visible and could lead to an increase in bacteria and germs. But modern science refutes these claims.
Here are some myths surrounding the solar eclipse:
* In Vietnam, people believe that a solar eclipse is caused by a giant frog devouring the sun.
* Norse cultures believe wolves devour the Sun, while the ancient Chinese blamed a dragon for swallowing it and causing the eclipse.
* The Greeks believed that a solar eclipse was a sign of angry gods and could portend natural disasters.
* In Native American mythology, there is a story of a bear who fought with the Sun and took a bite out of it. After they resolved their conflict, the bear went to meet the Moon and bit it as well causing a lunar eclipse.
* In Inuit folklore, the Sun goddess Malina walks away after a fight with the Moon god Anningan. When Anningan catches up with his sister, it causes a solar eclipse.
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