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Rare Venus Transit Draws Worldwide Attention


Venus transits the sun, as seen from Prague in a photograph taken by RFE/RL's Jan Kaiser.

Venus transits the sun, as seen from Prague in a photograph taken by RFE/RL's Jan Kaiser.

Stargazers worldwide watched Venus as it moved across the face of the sun as viewed from Earth on June 6 -- a rare astronomical event that astronomers say is not scheduled to occur again for another 105 years.

The nearly seven-hour transit of the second planet from the sun was visible first from the Pacific and north and central Americas as a small black dot trailing across the solar surface.

Australia presented one of the best vantage points.

For Europe, the Middle East, and South Asia, most of the event happened overnight and planetary observers had to wait until sunrise to observe the transit's final moments.

The next such transit is expected in 2117.

Only six transits have been observed since the telescope was invented, the first one in 1639.

Based on reporting by AFP and the BBC
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