What Happened During the 1917 “Miracle of the Sun”?

What Happened During the 1917 “Miracle of the Sun”?

In 1917, three youngsters in Fátima, Portugal, claimed to have seen an apparition of the Virgin Mary on their way home after tending sheep.

Mary promised the trio that she would resurface on the 13th of every month for six months (like Urkel) before disappearing. Visitors began to flock to the town as word of this miracle spread. However, Mary would only appear to Lucia, the eldest of the children, who would have to recount the vision she was experiencing to the rest of the family. According to the children’s reports, Mary vowed that on her final visit, on October 13, 1917, she would provide confirmation to others in the form of a miracle.

The word spread and an estimated 70,000 people turned out to see the promised apparition. Many in the audience were not disappointed when they looked up and saw what has come to be known as the “miracle of the Sun.” Several witnesses saw the Sun, which is usually seen as a stable blob in the sky, speeding towards Earth before returning to its previous position, whirling around on itself and emitting bursts of colored light.

What Happened During the 1917 “Miracle of the Sun”?

“As I looked at the sun, I noticed that everything was darkening.” I started with the closest items and then moved my gaze further out, all the way to the horizon. Everything had turned an amethyst tint, I noticed. The objects surrounding me, as well as the sky and the environment, were all the same color. “Everything near and far had changed, taking on the color of old yellow damask,” José Maria de Almeida Garrett, a physics professor who witnessed the occurrence, recalled, but some suggest his son gave the description.

“People appeared to be suffering from jaundice, and I recall feeling amused at seeing them look so ugly and unattractive.” “My hand was the same color,” he went on. “I observed all of the phenomena I’ve described in a calm and serene state of mind, with no emotional disturbance.” Others must interpret and explain them.”

So, how do we account for them? One thing is certain: nothing out of the ordinary happened to the Sun on that day, as the event was not observed anywhere else on Earth. Whatever happened, it was a one-time occurrence.

According to Artur Wirowski of the Lodz University of Technology, witnesses may have seen a “sun dog,” which is caused by clouds of ice crystals high in the atmosphere. These clouds can also distribute color throughout the sky, which may explain what witnesses saw.

It was, however, a highly varied occurrence, with witnesses claiming widely disparate reports of what they saw, ranging from spinning Catherine wheels to the Sun changing color like a disco light. Despite a gathering of 70,000 people and press coverage, there are no images of the Sun performing its acrobatics.

A much more obvious interpretation is that the throng experienced a heady mix of mass panic and solar retinopathy, or retinal burning from gazing up at the Sun for too long. It’s a condition that has been observed in later religious folks who have spent too much time staring at the Sun during religious rites.

Given that not everyone experienced the occurrence, the symptoms, which include color changes and a Sun that appears to zip across the sky (perhaps an afterimage of the Sun that lingered with observers as they turned their heads), explain events far better than a sun dog. Perhaps some were simply too cautious to look directly at the Sun, even while assembled to witness a miracle on the word of three children.