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Solar eclipse 2015: Myths and tall tales about the event

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Stargazers, and the rest of us, are set to experience a treat when the skies are darkened by the biggest solar eclipse in Europe.

The moon will block the sun’s rays, for almost two hours from 9.31am, on the morning of March 20.

But for some, it isn’t just a case of the skies going dark – the eclipse will bring about all manner of changes.

We decided to take a look at some of the most outrageous myths to have attached themselves to the momentous event.

A fighting sun and moon

People in parts of Africa are of the firm belief that an eclipse represents the moment the sun and moon are at war, while people below implore them to halt their feud.

Demons

This originates from Vietnam, where people believed a frog was swallowing the sun, causing the eclipse, while in ancient China, depending where you read, either a dragon or a large dog is believed to be the mythical creature lunching on the sun – presumably before breathing it out as fire?

This is why the arrival of eclipse is often associated with pots and pans. These were banged together by people imploring the eclipse to stop.

Fasting

People in India observe fasts during the eclipse due to the belief that any food cooked while it is under way will be poisonous.

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Pregnancy

A popular misconception is that solar eclipses can be a danger to pregnant women and their unborn child. In many cultures, young children and pregnant women are asked to stay indoors during a solar eclipse.

Poison?

People in Japan are said to have covered their wells during the eclipse – to prevent poison falling onto their water and killing their citizens

What to know where to see it? See here for these suggestions.

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