World treated to incredible blood moon

The Longest Lunar Eclipse of the 21st Century Is Tonight. How to Watch

Skygazers will be treated with the longest total lunar eclipse or "Chandra Grahan" of the 21st century that will take place on Friday, July 27 till wee hours of July 28.

Skywatchers around much of the world have begun watching a complete lunar eclipse that is the longest of this century which coincides with Mars' closest approach in 15 years.

The total eclipse lasted 1 hour, 42 minutes and 57 seconds, though a partial eclipse preceded and follows, meaning the moon will spend a total of almost 4 hours in the Earth's umbral shadow, according to Nasa.

Unlike solar eclipse, lunar eclipses are visible with the naked eye and people do not need to wear eye protection.

And, of course, there are areas across the world where the eclipse will not be visible at all, such as North America.

Eventually, our planet completely blocked light from the sun, turning the white orb into an eerie, blood red spot in the night sky.

"Dem yelebesech chereka", some murmured - Amharic for "blood moon".

The ancient Inca were said to have believed a red moon meant it had been mauled by a jaguar, and the Mesopotamians thought it was a warning their king would be attacked.

The long duration of this eclipse is partly due to the fact that the moon will make a near-central passage through Earth's umbra - the darkest, most central part of the shadow.

Rain and cloudy skies could prevent sky gazers from watching Friday's lunar eclipse in Delhi, the city's Nehru Planetarium has said.

If the rain clouds permitted, the moon will appear entirely red or ruddy brown in the whole of India at 10:44 pm local time and will reach "totality" past midnight.

However, not all lunar eclipses will lead to a "bloody" show.

Thousands of Australians rose in the pre-dawn twilight, braving the winter chill on Saturday to marvel at a spectacular celestial display - a glowing red moon and a shimmering Mars.

Lunar eclipse are sometimes referred to as blood moons as a result of the reddish-orange tint the face of the moon takes on as moves entirely into the shadow of Earth.

According to Hindu beliefs, celestial bodies like the sun and moon emit negative energy during an eclipse and so some temples in India were closed to minimize any disturbance.

The entire eclipse can be viewed from Brunei until moon set at 6.23am, Hazarry said.

Two very similar passages appear later in the New Testament, in the books of Acts and Revelations.

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