A unique poinsettia that has not been seen for 400 years will be visible from TODAY

A unique poinsettia that has not been seen in 400 years will be visible TODAY – and that’s exactly how you can see it

  • The crescent moon passes Jupiter and Saturn and forms a conjunction on December 17th
  • Jupiter and Saturn will appear as one star in a “Great Conjunction” on December 21st
  • The two planets are said to align themselves close to Earth for the first time in 400 years
  • Star gazers can spot the phenomenon around 9 p.m. Australian Eastern Time
  • Anyone using a telescope can also see the individual planets and their moons

For the first time in 400 years, a unique poinsettia will adorn the sky on Thursday.

Jupiter and Saturn will align in the night sky on December 21st and appear as a single bright star in a moment known as the “Great Conjunction”.

But Australian stargazers will be able to see the phenomenon as early as Thursday, when Jupiter slowly approaches Saturn, according to the Perth Observatory website.

Matt Woods of the Perth Observatory said that to see the conjunction Thursday, Australians should look south-west low on the horizon between 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

The Australian sky will come with one

The Australian skies will light up with a “one-off” event when Jupiter and Saturn (see picture above) meet in a “grand conjunction” on December 21 at around 9 p.m. (AEDT)

The two planets appear as a bright star in the night sky (example diagram shown)

The two planets appear as a bright star in the night sky (example diagram shown)

Jupiter will be “one of the brightest in the west” with the moon and the two planets forming a triangular formation.

Mr. Woods said the last time the rare planetary alignment appeared so close to Earth, “the telescope had just been invented”.

“It gets pretty close every couple of decades, but the last time they were that close was when Galileo was still alive on July 16, 1623,” he said

Mr. Woods said the Grand Conjunction was “visible all over the world” and could be enjoyed by die-hard enthusiasts and the occasional star gazer alike.

“They appear near a star between 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. (AWST) and you don’t need a telescope to see them,” he explained.

“It’s something people can just go into their backyards and look at.”

The phenomenon will be visible around 9 p.m. on the east coast.

Mr Woods said stargazers using binoculars or a telescope might even be able to see the planets and their individual moons up close.

Both planets will be visible for a week around December 21st.

Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, is the second largest in the solar system and the only place outside of Earth where surface fluid has been found.

Stargazers using a telescope (file image shown) can also see the individual planets and their moons.  The phenomenon last occurred around 400 years ago

Stargazers using a telescope (file image shown) can also see the individual planets and their moons. The phenomenon last occurred around 400 years ago

Mr. Woods also urged stargazers to find a flat and clear area to discover the planets.

“They’re pretty low on the horizon. So if people in the west have buildings or trees on the horizon, it’s better to get out early and take a look,” he explained.

“Or just go to a local park and give it a try.”

Mr. Woods greeted stargazers who joined the Perth Observatory and the Fremantle Sidewalk Astronomy to observe the phenomenon at North Coogee Dogs Beach.

THE STAR OF BETHLEHEM: INSPIRED THE THREE WISE MEN TO BABY JESUS ​​IN BIBLE STORIES

The star of Bethlehem or the poinsettia is said to have inspired the three wise men from the east to visit the baby Jesus in Bible stories.

It appears in the nativity story of the Gospel of Matthew, where they are said to have asked King Herod of Judea where he was born as King of the Jews. For we have seen his star in the east and have come to worship him. ‘

It is said that the star took them to the hometown of Jesus, where they worshiped him and gave him gifts of golden frankincense and myrrh.

The Gospel describes the visitors as “magicians”, which is usually translated as “wise”, but can also be called astronomer / astrologer.

Astronomers have made several attempts to calculate what that star could have been – whether it was a celestial event or a pious fiction.

The famous German astronomer Johannes Kepler wrote in 1614 that he believed that the “Star of Bethlehem” in the biblical story of the three wise men could have been a rare triple lead from Jupiter, Saturn and Venus.

This would create a very bright point of light in the sky that would only appear for a few days. A similar conjunction should take place at Christmas 2020.

Other theories are a supernova explosion that comes pretty close – which could appear like a very, very bright sky or even a comet for a relatively short period of time.

Chinese and Korean stargazers have written over a bright object that may have been around 5 BC. Was a comet or supernova and has been seen for more than 70 days.

Ancient astronomers wrote about comets that “hang” over certain cities – just as the star of Bethlehem is supposed to “stand” over the place where Jesus was born – the city of Bethlehem.

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