The smoothness of the lunar topography is interrupted by mountains, craters, valleys, etc, and the lunar limb profile is known accurately from grazing occultations of stars. So in advance of the eclipse we have a fairly good idea which mountains and valleys will cause the beads to appear. While Baily's beads are seen for a few seconds at the central path of the eclipse, they are visible longer near the margins of the path of totality.
The diamond ring effect is seen when only one bead is left, a shining diamond set in a bright ring around the lunar silhouette.
Cosmas Damian Asam was probably the earlist realistic painter to depict a total solar eclipse and diamond ring. His painting was finished in 1735.
A Brilliant Ring of Sunshine Lit Up the Dark Velvet Sky .. It Was So Humbling; THE ECLIPSE 1999: SPOOKY, WASN'T IT?
Aug 12, 1999; MERLIN worked his ancient Cornish magic for me yesterday. Standing next to a giant satellite dish named after the wizard of King...
THE SUN SEEKERS the Masses Are Ready to Converge on Cornwall for August's Solar Eclips E. but for the Eclipse-Chasers, It Will Be Just One of Many That They've Travelled Thousands of Miles to See. by Dan Falk
May 16, 1999; IT'S A FIERCELY hot day, dusty and windy. At any other time, this thorn-and-thistle-strewn field on the northern tip of Curacao,...