Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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Northern Lights seen at Ryde 1836

Aurora Borealis seen from Norway in 1869
Aurora Borealis seen from Norway in 1869

An aurora borealis was observed at Ryde, Isle of Wight, on the night of Wednesday the 10th instant (August), which for its intensity, its occurrence so far south, and at such a time of the year, is worth recording. It was first observed about half-past eleven o’clock. There was the usual dark band upon the horizon under the magnetic north, and to some distance right and left of that point: at intervals of time the space above this became luminous, like a glow of twilight, and this broke out into columns, nearly upright, but inclining above to the east, and, as far as could be judged by the eye, parallel to each other, and not convergent to the zenith or any other point in the heavens. They were gradually transferred by a slow motion from west to east, and generally ended by assuming a fine red colour. The appearance continued for an hour or more, but about one o’clock all had resumed the ordinary state. The stars were out, twinkling very much, and falling stars were observed frequently on that and the three or four proceeding evenings.


Source: The London and Edinburgh Philosophical Magazine and Journal of Science. Vol. IX July – December 1836

The image is from Harpers New Monthly Magazine June 1969 and shows the aurora borealis seen from Norway in 1869.