Thieving dogs, poisonous food and more: 7 bizarre myths surrounding the solar eclipse

DENVER – The Great American Eclipse is nigh and while many will revel in the astronomical event, others might wonder what sort of doom the eclipse will bring this coming Monday.

Here are 7 incredibly bizarre myths people believe about solar eclipses:

1. The solar eclipse and the effects it may have on your birthday (and most importantly, your health)

It is said that if a solar eclipse happens within six months before or after your birthday (or even on your birthday), you will experience bad health.

But NASA explains, “there is no physical relationship between a total solar eclipse and your health.” Officials say this is a common belief among astrologers.

2. Pregnant women should refrain from seeing the eclipse as it can harm your baby

NASA officials once again state this is a false belief that has been held through generations no matter evidence to the contrary.

The myth comes from an erroneous idea that harmful radiations emitted during a total solar eclipse can negatively impact a fetus inside the womb.

3. Eclipses will poison any food that is cooked during the event

In some parts of India, people will not touch food cooked during a total solar (or lunar) eclipse as they believe it to be poisonous and impure.

Regarding this myth, NASA says “f that were the case, the same radiations would harm the food in your pantry, or crops in the field.”

4. Mythical, hungry dogs are the cause of the eclipse since time immemorial

In ancient Viking lore, it was believed that a wolf named “Skoll” would snatch the sun away, causing the eclipse to happen.

The Nordic peoples would try to scare the wolf away by making a lot of noise with pans and other instruments, according to Icelandic author Snorri Sturlurson.

5. Flowers planted during the eclipse will be more vibrant than the rest

Some Italians believe that flowers you plant during a solar eclipse will grow to be more vibrant than flowers planted at other times of the year.

Unfortunately for these Italians – and all gardening aficionados -- there is no science to back up this claim.

6.  The solar eclipse will cause you to go completely blind

It is rumored that a total solar eclipse can cause you to go completely blind due to the production of harmful rays created by the sun.

“Being a million times fainter than the light from the sun itself, there is nothing in the coronal light that could cross 150 million kilometers of space , penetrate our dense atmosphere, and cause blindness,” NASA officials say.

7. There are no total solar eclipses in the North and South Poles

They may appear to be special places due to their location, but there have been total solar eclipses reported in the North and South Poles.

NASA officials say the last solar eclipse viewed from the North Pole occurred on March 20, 2015. In the south, it happened on Nov. 23, 2003.

h/t AJC.com, NASA.gov.

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