The 21st Century’s longest total lunar eclipse was witnessed around the globe on Friday and Saturday.

The total eclipse lasted 1 hour, 42 minutes and 57 seconds, though a partial eclipse preceded and followed, meaning the moon spent a total of nearly 4 hours in the Earth’s umbral shadow, according to NASA.

The fullest eclipse was visible from Europe, Russia, Africa, and much of Asia and Australia, though clouds blocked out the moon in some places. In India, the eclipse started at 10.44 pm and ended over six hours later on Saturday.

The unusually long duration of the eclipse was because the moon was near its farthest point from Earth and orbiting slowly, making it appear smaller and take longer to travel through Earth’s shadow, Space.com reported.

The next total lunar eclipse is on January 21, 2019.

A full moon rises behind the Temple of Poseidon before a lunar eclipse in Cape Sounion, near Athens in Greece (Image credit: Alkis Konstantinidis/ Reuters)
A full moon rises behind the Temple of Poseidon before a lunar eclipse in Cape Sounion, near Athens in Greece (Image credit: Alkis Konstantinidis/ Reuters)
A composite view of the succession of lunar eclipse as seen from Bengaluru. (Credit: IANS)
A composite view of the succession of lunar eclipse as seen from Bengaluru. (Credit: IANS)
A 'blood moon' eclipse seen over the roof of the Chambord Castle in France on Friday. (Credit: Guillaume Souvant/AFP)
A 'blood moon' eclipse seen over the roof of the Chambord Castle in France on Friday. (Credit: Guillaume Souvant/AFP)
A blood moon lunar eclipse seen near Roskilde in Denmark. (Credit: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix via Reuters)
A blood moon lunar eclipse seen near Roskilde in Denmark. (Credit: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix via Reuters)
A view of the moon from Chennai on Friday. (Credit: PTI)
A view of the moon from Chennai on Friday. (Credit: PTI)
A man looks at the moon eclipse through a telescope at Copacabana Fortress in Brazil's Rio de Janeiro on Friday. (Credit: Mauro Pimentel/AFP)
A man looks at the moon eclipse through a telescope at Copacabana Fortress in Brazil's Rio de Janeiro on Friday. (Credit: Mauro Pimentel/AFP)
A full moon over the Golden Temple in Punjab's Amritsar early on Saturday. (Credit: Narinder Nanu/AFP)
A full moon over the Golden Temple in Punjab's Amritsar early on Saturday. (Credit: Narinder Nanu/AFP)
People wait for the lunar eclipse at Amman Citadel in Jordan (Credit: Muhammad Hamed/Reuters)
People wait for the lunar eclipse at Amman Citadel in Jordan (Credit: Muhammad Hamed/Reuters)

The longest “blood moon” eclipse this century also coincided with Mars’ closest approach in 15 years. “It is a very unusual coincidence to have a total lunar eclipse and Mars at opposition on the same night,” said Robert Massey, deputy executive director of the Royal Astronomical Society, according to The Hindu.

The moon and Mars are seen during a lunar eclipse over Cairo in Egypt (Credit: Amr Abdallah Dalsh/ Reuters)
The moon and Mars are seen during a lunar eclipse over Cairo in Egypt (Credit: Amr Abdallah Dalsh/ Reuters)