Eclipse

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The 1999 solar eclipse.

An eclipse is an astronomical event. It is a process that develops slowly across time.

The eclipse is when one object in the sky moves into the shadow of another such object. When an eclipse happpens within a system of stars, like the Solar System, it makes a type of syzygy. This means that three or more objects in the sky are lined up in a straight line in the same gravitational system.[1]

The term eclipse is most often used to describe a solar eclipse, when the Moon's shadow crosses the Earth's surface, or a lunar eclipse, when the Moon moves into the shadow of Earth. No solar eclipse can last longer than 7 minutes and 58 seconds because of the speed at which the Earth and Moon move.

When the Sun is not involved, the event is called occultation.

Etymology[change | edit source]

The word comes from the ancient Greek noun ἔκλειψις (ékleipsis), which is from the verb ἐκλείπω (ekleípō). This means "to cease (stop) to exist (be there)".[2][3][4]

References[change | edit source]