Columbus and the 1504 lunar eclipse

Columbus and the 1504 lunar eclipse

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Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Columbus and the 1504 lunar eclipse. This eclipse of 1 March 1504 (29 February in the Americas) was predicted in astronomical tables that were used by the Italian explorer Christopher Columbus (1452-1506). Columbus and his crew were stranded in Jamaica on 25 June 1503 during his fourth voyage (1502-1504), remaining there for over a year. When provisions ran low, Columbus successfully threatened to deprive the natives of the light of the moon if they did not supply food. This artwork, by French illustrator Leon Benett (1838-1917), is from Astronomical Myths (1877) by the British geologist John Frederick Blake (1839-1906).

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