Latin v. delinquere: “to lack, to fail
In 1836, Francis Baily travelled to the Scottish Borders to see a solar eclipse. He witnessed a macabre and beautiful phenomenon.
A row of lucid points, like a string of bright beads of irregular distance and size from each other. These suddenly appeared around the circumference of the moon that was about to enter into the sun’s disc. ~ Francis Baily, 1836.
Baily named this momentary necklace of fire around the moon during the eclipse Baily’s Beads
Baily’s Beads is the phenomenon of sunlight shining through the rough craters and valleys on the surface of the moon during a solar eclipse. Lasting for only a few moments, this causes a circle of glowing beads of fire around the moon.
The older word for Eclipse is Deliquium
Eclipse comes from French with its roots in Greek. It means failure to appear or to leave one’s usual place. Eclipse mirrors an earlier word from Latin commonly used during medieval times was Deliquium, meaning failure of the sun to shine.
Deliquium was used as an early medical term in the seventeenth century to describe a person fainting following a session of grisly blood-letting or other procedures. Deliquium later fell out of use in English in the 19th Century.