Lunar Day Two

  • Tammy PlotnerEmail author
Part of the Astronomer’s Pocket Field Guide book series (ASTROPOC)


We begin with just our eyes tonight as the Moon appears as a very slender crescent that will soon set as the sky darkens (Fig. 3.1). This lunar apparition looks very much like a pair of bright horns bearing a dark disk. Such a Moon may have given rise to the ancient symbol associated with fertility goddesses originating in Egypt and Mesopotamia. Today we see it “as the Old Moon in the New Moon’s arms” - brilliantly lit on one side and softly illuminated on the other. No special equipment is needed to see this event, and thanks to Leonardo da Vinci - we can see the ghostly effect on the Moon as quite logical. He was the first to theorize that sunlight was reflecting off the Earth and illuminating the portion of the Moon not lit by the Sun. We more commonly refer to this as “Earthshine” - but no matter how scientific the explanations are for this apparition, it still remains beautiful.


Lunar Surface Crater Floor Small Telescope Ghostly Effect Lunar Highland 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CaledoniaUSA

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