There is a popular belief that a season in which a solar eclipse occurs is either colder, or that the weather exhibits vagaries not observable in ordinary seasons. The present season has bet'U in the vicinity of New York extremely cool, and more than an ordinary rainfall has taken place. This has not been universally the case, and must therefore be considered merely a local peculiarity of climate. We have found that popular opinion very often has some basis in fact, although the cause may not be the one generally supposed to account for a given phenomenon. A good example of this is the discovery by Dr. Richardson, in his experiments with the great induction coil, at the London Polytechnic Institution, that arborescent marks may be produced on the bodies of iersons struck by lightning, a fact which has been discredited by scientists. The popular opinion in regard to these marks has been that they were the images of trees photographed upon the skin by electrical agency. Now, although the experiments of Dr. Richardson confirm the production of the marks, they show, that, instead of being images of trees or plants, they are the superficial tracings of blood vessels, which the electric current has followed on account of their greater conductivity. So in the case of peculiar weather occurring at or near the period of a solar eclipse, we deem it probable that an examination may show the popular opinion to be correct, although the cause may have no immediate connection with the eclipse itself. There remains, of course, the possibility that climatic peculiarities, thought to be more frequent at such periods, are merely coincident, but there is, undoubtedly, a growing disposition on the iart of meteorologists to refer certain atmospheric phenomena to celestial and cosmical influences as their cause. The subject is one of great interest and we should like to hear its pro s and con's discussed. Any of our correspondents wdio will give us facts bearing upon the subject will be welcomed to our columns. Theory will be out of place until the regular occurrence of peculiar atmospheric conditions in connection with solar eclipses is fully established.
This article was originally published with the title "Is the Weather Affected by Solar Eclipses?"