Text #877

Seneca. Natural Questions. Series: The Complete Works of Lucius Annaeus Seneca
[Sen. 7.20.4. Translated by Harry M. Hine. The University of Chicago Press. 2010 p. 127]

“On Comets”

We fail to see many comets because they are concealed by the sun’s rays. Posidonius records that once when the sun was eclipsed a comet appeared, which the nearby sun had hidden from view. Often when the sun has set, scattered fires appear not far from it; clearly the star itself is bathed in the sun’s light and so cannot be seen, but its hair escapes the sun’s rays.

Text #878

Editorial comment by Laura Knight-Jadczyk

There are three dates about this eclipse. Seneca’s words seem to imply that Posidonius had observed the phenomena personally. Posidonius was born about 130 BC, and the two other solar eclipses were in 115 BC or in 94 BC.

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