Mythical Ireland Blog | Astronomy & the Sky

In pictures: super wolf blood moon - total eclipse over the Boyne Valley

Anthony Murphy shares his photos of the "super blood wolf moon" - the total lunar eclipse - taken at various locations in the Boyne Valley including Drogheda, Dowth and Newgrange.

 

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The Milky Way - the twining branches of Deirdre and her lover Naoise

The Milky Way galaxy and Venus over Síd in Broga (Newgrange passage-mound) at Brú na Bóinne. The Milky Way had many names in Irish myth and tradition. One of the traditions is that two trees grew out of the graves of two lovers who had been buried either side of a lake, and that the branches of the two trees connected in the sky over the lake.

 

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The lunar symbolism of kerb stone 78 at Knowth

This is kerb stone 78 at Knowth, located not far from the entrance to the western passage. It is one of 127 kerb stones at Knowth, of which 90 have megalithic art. But what do these symbols represent, if anything? Are they merely art for art’s sake?

 

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Eclipse dreaming: a blood red moon at Newgrange

On the night of a total eclipse, when the blood red moon should have been visible inside Newgrange, the sky was overcast and heavy rain returned to the Boyne Valley after two months of drought.

 

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Lugh of the Long Arm carries the sun on the summer solstice

The longest days of the year have arrived. The sun's rising and setting positions have reached their most northerly points along the horizon and these rising points are now "standing still" - hence the word solstice, or in Irish grianstad, meaning, literally, "stopped sun".

 

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New Year, New Moon – moon, Venus and the stars at twilight at Newgrange

The first evening of the new year was a glorious one at Newgrange in the Boyne Valley. The first sunset of 2017 was magnificent, followed by a descent into twilight that featured rich hues and colours, and then the crescent moon next to Venus, the Evening Star, made it a really gorgeous close to the day. In a couple of the shots, you might also catch a glimpse of Mars, which was trailing the Moon and Venus. I was lucky to be able to spend time there putting together this very special time lapse video. It might have been cold, but it was lovely.

 

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