The first northern lights were recorded in a Chinese chronicle in 977 BC. C. He describes it as a “light of five colors”.
Historians have found the first record of an aurora borealis in a Chinese chronicle dating from 977 B.C. C., almost 3 thousand years ago.
The story is detailed in one of the 13 parts of the ‘ Bamboo Annals ‘, written on strips of bamboo during the Song dynasty in China.
The first record of an aurora
According to the finding, detailed in Advances in Space Research , this text points to the aurora borealis as “a five-colored light” visible in the northern part of the sky towards the end of Zhao’s reign, Zhou dynasty.
The scientists mention that the description coincides with the most recent accounts of the first sightings of this type of geomagnetic storms.
At that time in history, the Earth’s north magnetic pole was about 15% closer to China than it is today, so these sightings are scientifically possible.
Lack of interest in registration
The Bamboo Annals begins in the legendary early times (Yellow Emperor) and extends to the Warring States Period (5th century-221 BC), particularly the history of the Wei State. It has 13 sections.
The original bamboo manuscript was lost during the Song dynasty. The text was known through several copies (the majority incomplete). In the early 20th century, Zhu Youceng and Wang Guowei, by examining citations in pre-Song works, recovered major parts of the earlier version. There is another more detailed and complete new version, printed in the 14th century, and it has been dismissed by some scholars as a forgery, while others consider it to be a largely authentic version of the original text.
Due to this, the study of their texts has been put aside, being recently taken up by scientists. Before this finding, the first records of northern lights date back to the years 679 and 655 BC.