Leonids meteor shower of 1799

Leonids meteor shower of 1799

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Leonids meteor shower of 1799, in the constellation of Leo, near the star Regulus (lower left). Leonid meteor showers occur annually for about 2 days around mid-November when the Earth crosses the orbit of debris produced by the comet Tempel-Tuttle. This particular meteor shower was an example of the 33-year-cycle of Leonids maximums, when thousands of meteors can be seen. This meteor shower was observed from Venezuela by the German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859). Artwork from the seventh volume (first period of 1891) of the French popular science weekly 'La Science Illustree'.

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