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Leonid meteor shower. Coloured historical artwork of the spectacular Leonid meteor shower of 13 November 1833, as seen in America. The shower's three hour peak resulted in terror. Meteors, or shooting stars, are tiny dust grains which enter the Earth's atmosphere and glow as they are heated by air resistance. 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. These meteors enter the atmosphere at speeds of about 72 kilometres per second. There are 5-20 meteors each hour, apart from about once every 33 years when thousands can be seen. This artwork was made in 1889.
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