Etranges apparitions dans le ciel

Notes and Queries, vol. 3 (77), pp. 298-299 , samedi 19 avril 1851

s1Paijmans, Theo: "1887 - three immense circles seen in the skies", Magonia Exchange, 5 mai 2007

L'article d'origine
L'article d'origine

Strange appearances in the sky have not been without their ominous signification from the time that the greater and lesser lights were placed there and onward to the "star in the east" which announced our Saviour's birth, and the "light from heaven" which accompanied St. Paul's conversion. But the question is, whether there has since been any meaning in other like celestial illuminations? Some historical credit is claimed for the fiery sword, and armies fighting in the air, which preceded the siege of Jerusalem : for the cross of the Emperor Constantine : for the bow about the sun seen by Augustus Cæsar, when he took possession of the Roman empire: and for stars, or other heavenly lights, which have seemed to herald the births or deaths of illustrious personages. But are these stories to be believed? and, if they are, where is the line of credibility to be drawn? People cannot come together, and talk either on this subject, or on that of ghosts, but every one "hath a revelation, hath an interpretation." The poet, walking on the mountains, looked into the sky, and

The appearance, instantaneously disclosed,
Was of a mighty eity — boldly say
A wilderness of building, sinking far,
And self-withdrawn, into a wondrous depth,
Far sinking into splendour — without end?

Les 2 extraits qui suivent proviennent de lettres privées aujourd'hui devant moi. Le 1er récit fut écrit en 1825 par un médecin, toujours vivant, et qui à l'époque lu un récit de ce qu'il avait vu à une rencontre de la Société Plinienne. Il dit,

J'ai lu le soir dernier un article sur une apparition extraordinaire de lettres, formées par les nuages, vue par un M. T. et moi-même. Nous avions aussi avec nous 2 petits garçons, un de 9 ans, et l'autre de 11, qui were able to make out each letter equally with ourselves. These children were at the time walking some distance behind us: but, upon their coming up, and being shown the letters, they read them without having heard any observation of ours respecting them. We saw them for about two minutes, when they gradually changed their form — each letter changing its perpendicular for a horizontal position, and at length the whole becoming converted into that form of cloud denominated cirro-stratus. I will endeavour to give you a faint idea of the appearance, by forming the letters as well as my memory will enable me. I make no comment upon the words themselves, as they are too extraordinary for observation of any kind. It was upon the 12th of last month : several showers had fallen in the course of the day, but the afternoon was fine. The time seven in the evening. The letters were formed upon a fine blue surface, having no other clouds near them, except very small ones, which tended much to heighten the effect of the whole.

L'article d'origine
L'article d'origine



M i l l e n n i u m


You will observe several deficiencies in the letters of the first word, viz. in the first 'E;' also in the 'N,' the second part beging short; and a slight defect in the letter 'A.' With respect to the second word, the first six letters were very perfect: the others, with the exception of the 'M,' mere strokes; but in number sufficient to make up the word: and they had the appearance of having been perfect. I can assure you they were anything but obscure, and required very little stretch of the imagination. In the first word the letters were equidistant and beautifully uniform. The second word was not quite straight, being curved toward its termination. This appeared to me to arise from the change of position which the letters were undergoing, as before stated.

Mon autre extrait vient d'une lettre écrite en 1851. La scène à laquelle elle fait référence est une chambre de malade occupée par une grand-mère octogénaire, qui est in extremis. Sa fille, qui récit le récit, est présente, avec un de ses petites-filles, qui a presque 11 ans. L'infirmière à quitté la chamber.

Nous nous tîment par la suite à côté du feu de pauvre grand-mère, et nous étions alors assis à sa fenêtre pour voir le lever de la lune. Il y avait là de nombreux nuages à côté, et juste en-dessous se trouvait la figure la plus marquée de notre Sauveur sur la croix. La tête était cachée par la lumière, mais les bras étaient étendus, et le corps assez distinct. M. le vit aussi, et dit, "How appropriate, aunt, for the beginning of Lent!" She has never alluded to it since, nor, of couse, have I ; nor do I think any more of it, than that were it was: and there is something happy in the fancy, at all events, for it shone on her dying bed.

As you admit folk lore into "Notes and Queries," also well-attested anecdotes, although these may not absolutely conduce to advancement of learning or art, perhaps you will receive for the amusement of those who, like myself, feel an interest in anything which takes us a little out of the hardware facts of "the age we live in."