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Wed 22 Dec 2010 09:01 AM

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Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21

The last time the Moon went into total eclipse on the Winter Solstice was more than 400 years ago

Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A total eclipsed moon is seen from Silver Spring, Maryland, on December 21, 2010. This eclipse takes place just hours before the December solstice, which marks the beginning of northern winter and southern summer (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
The earth's shadow cast over the moon during a lunar eclipse on December 21, 2010, seen from the northeastern German town of Petersdorf (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
In this handout photo provided by NASA, A total lunar eclipse is seen as the full moon is shadowed by the Earth on the arrival of the winter solstice, on December 21, 2010 in Arlington, Virginia (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A total eclipsed moon is seen from Silver Spring, Maryland, on December 21, 2010. This eclipse takes place just hours before the December solstice, which marks the beginning of northern winter and southern summer (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A lunar eclipse occurs as the full moon is shadowed by the Earth on December 21, 2010 in New York City (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
The moon is pictured during its circle of a total eclipse as seen from Silver Spring, Maryland, on December 21, 2010 (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
In this handout photo provided by NASA, A total lunar eclipse is seen as the full moon is shadowed by the Earth on the arrival of the winter solstice, on December 21, 2010 in Arlington, Virginia (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A picture taken in New York shows the moon as as the total eclipse starts to recede on December, 21, 2010 (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A picture taken in Manassas, Virginia shows the moon as the total eclipse reaches its peak on December, 21, 2010. During the eclipse, the Earth will align between the full moon and the sun, covering the lunar surface in shadow (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A picture taken in New York shows the moon as the shadow of the earth has receded in the final stages of a total eclipse on December, 21, 2010 (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A total lunar eclipse occurs as the full moon is shadowed by the Earth on December 21, 2010 in New York City (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
Light shines from Manhattan's Woolworth building as a total lunar eclipse occurs as the full moon is shadowed by the Earth on December 21, 2010 in New York City (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
In this handout photo provided by NASA, A total lunar eclipse is seen behind the Washington Monument as the full moon is shadowed by the Earth on the arrival of the winter solstice, on December 21, 2010 in Washington, DC (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A picture taken in New York shows the moon as a total eclipse nears its peak on December, 21, 2010 (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A picture taken in New York shows the moon during a total lunar eclipse on December, 21, 2010. During the eclipse, the Earth will align between the full moon and the sun, covering the lunar surface in shadow (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
A total eclipsed moon is pictured as seen from Silver Spring, Maryland, on December 21, 2010 (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
This combination of pictures shows the moon in various stages of a total lunar eclipse as seen from Mexico city on December 21, 2010 (Getty Images)
Rare celestial spectacle visible on Dec 21
This combination of pictures shows the moon during a cycleof a total eclipse as seen from Silver Spring, Maryland, on December 21, 2010 (Getty Images)