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Bright Venus to show in daytime sky

Effulgent Venus will show just beside the moon today. Also, some cues on how to observe this rare and beautiful event.

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This NASA sky map details the celestial conjunction of Venus, Jupiter and our moon.

NASA/JPL/Jane Jones

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The planet Venus has been dominating the nighttime sky recently, but did you know it's possible to see the bright world in the daytime? Today (March 26), Venus can be spotted in the afternoon if you know where and when to look.

In fact, a daytime apparition of Venus in the sky was famously spotted by none other than President Abraham Lincoln in 1865.

It was March 4, 1865, and the streets of Washington DC were packed with crowds watching the inauguration of Abraham Lincoln for his second term as president. Suddenly someone in the crowd spotted something strange in the sky: a tiny brilliant point of light. Excitement swelled through the crowd as each person pointed it out to their neighbor. The commotion even reached as far as the Lincoln himself, and soon he too was pointing at the brilliant point in the sky.

One of Lincoln's bodyguards, Sergeant Smith Stimmellater, described it this way: "Soon after the President concluded his address, he entered his carriage, and the procession started up Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House, the escort from our Company following next to his carriage. Shortly after we turned onto Pennsylvania Avenue, west of the Capitol, I noticed the crowd along the street looking intently, and some were pointing to something in the heavens toward the south. [Great Skywatcher Photos of Venus and Jupiter]

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