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October 12, 1939 Total Solar Eclipse

This eclipse wasn't visible in Washington DC - Which upcoming eclipses can be seen in your location?

What the Eclipse Looked Like Near the Maximum Point

The animation shows what the eclipse approximately looked like near the maximum point. The curvature of the Moon's path is due to the Earth's rotation.

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Where the Eclipse Was Seen

Try our new interactive eclipse maps. Zoom in and search for accurate eclipse times and visualizations for any location.

Path of the Eclipse Shadow

Regions that saw, at least, a partial eclipse: South/East Australia, South in South America, Pacific, Atlantic, Antarctica.

Expand for a list of selected cities where the partial eclipse was visible

This eclipse wasn't visible in Washington DC - Which upcoming eclipses can be seen in your location?

Eclipse Shadow Path

Portion of Sun covered by the Moon (Eclipse obscuration)






The dark areas symbolize night and twilight.

When the Eclipse Happened Worldwide — Timeline

The eclipse started at one location and ended at another. The times below are actual times (in UTC) when the eclipse occurred. This calculation uses a Delta T value of 24.4 seconds.

Eclipse Stages WorldwideUTC TimeLocal Time in Washington DC*
First location to see the partial eclipse beginOct 12 at 18:34:44Oct 12 at 1:34:44 pm
First location to see the full eclipse beginOct 12 at 20:14:26Oct 12 at 3:14:26 pm
Maximum EclipseOct 12 at 20:39:59Oct 12 at 3:39:59 pm
Last location to see the full eclipse endOct 12 at 21:05:09Oct 12 at 4:05:09 pm
Last location to see the partial eclipse endOct 12 at 22:45:06Oct 12 at 5:45:06 pm

* These local times do not refer to a specific location but indicate the beginning, peak, and end of the eclipse on a global scale, each line referring to a different location. This eclipse isn't visible in Washington DC.

Upcoming eclipses visible in Washington DC

Next Total Solar Eclipse will be on Oct 1, 1940

Eclipse calculations usually accurate to a few seconds

Countries Where the Eclipse Is Visible

CountryTypeStart of EclipseEnd of Eclipse
Total Solar Eclipse
7:30 pm 10:42 pm
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:19 pm ART6:45 pm ART
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:18 am LHST7:08 am
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:17 pm CLT6:45 pm CLT
Falkland Islands
Partial Solar Eclipse
6:27 pm FKST7:35 pm FKST
Partial Solar Eclipse
6:56 am TOT8:19 am TOT
New Caledonia
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:34 am NCT7:01 am NCT
New Zealand
Partial Solar Eclipse
6:41 am NZST9:11 am NZST
Partial Solar Eclipse
7:37 am NUT8:25 am NUT
Norfolk Island
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:48 am 7:30 am
Papua New Guinea
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:20 am PGT5:29 am PGT
Solomon Islands
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:46 am SBT6:26 am SBT
Partial Solar Eclipse
7:03 am TOT8:22 am TOT
Partial Solar Eclipse
5:35 am VUT6:54 am VUT
Wallis and Futuna
Partial Solar Eclipse
6:58 am WFT7:20 am WFT

All times shown in this table are local time. (Note: more than one time zone is listed.)

How Many People Can See This Eclipse?

Number of People Seeing...Number of People*Fraction of World Population
Any part of the eclipse5,110,0000.30%
At least 10% partial4,650,0000.27%
At least 20% partial4,500,0000.26%
At least 30% partial4,150,0000.24%
At least 40% partial3,510,0000.20%
At least 50% partial2,860,0000.17%
At least 60% partial1,320,0000.08%
At least 70% partial118,0000.006%
At least 80% partial--
At least 90% partial--
Totality or annularity--

* The number of people refers to the resident population (as a round number) in areas where the eclipse is visible. timeanddate has calculated these numbers using raw population data provided by the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) at Columbia University. The raw data is based on population estimates from the year 2000 to 2020.

An Eclipse Never Comes Alone!

A solar eclipse always occurs about two weeks before or after a lunar eclipse.

Usually, there are two eclipses in a row, but other times, there are three during the same eclipse season.

All eclipses 1900 — 2199

This is the first eclipse this season.

Second eclipse this season: October 28, 1939 — Partial Lunar Eclipse