<p><strong>This morning's partial <a id="z2t:" title="solar eclipses" href="http://science.nationalgeographic.com/science/space/solar-system/solar-eclipse-article.html">solar eclipse</a> had the sun masquerading as a crescent moon, as seen in a picture taken through trees in Lublin, <a id="giex" title="Poland" href="http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/countries/poland-guide/">Poland</a>.</strong></p><p>In fact, the moon had a part to play in the celestial event—partial solar eclipses happen when the moon blocks part of the sun's disk, as seen from Earth, casting parts of the planet in shadow. This morning's eclipse was visible across most of continental Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia.</p><p>In some regions rainy skies blocked a good portion of the eclipse, although thinner clouds added an otherworldly effect to some peoples' views.</p><p>"It was a memorable experience and I feel lucky to [have seen] it," astronomer Gianluca Masi of Rome, Italy, told Space.com.</p><p>(Also see <a id="to_1" title="pictures of last month's total lunar eclipse" href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/12/photogalleries/101221-lunar-eclipse-2010-pictures-winter-solstice-december-20-nasa-space-science-pictures/">pictures of last month's total lunar eclipse</a>.)</p>

Forest Eclipse

This morning's partial solar eclipse had the sun masquerading as a crescent moon, as seen in a picture taken through trees in Lublin, Poland.

In fact, the moon had a part to play in the celestial event—partial solar eclipses happen when the moon blocks part of the sun's disk, as seen from Earth, casting parts of the planet in shadow. This morning's eclipse was visible across most of continental Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia.

In some regions rainy skies blocked a good portion of the eclipse, although thinner clouds added an otherworldly effect to some peoples' views.

"It was a memorable experience and I feel lucky to [have seen] it," astronomer Gianluca Masi of Rome, Italy, told Space.com.

(Also see pictures of last month's total lunar eclipse.)

Photograph by Wojciech Pacewicz, European Pressphoto Agency/Corbis

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