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Stargazers watched in awe as the moon turned from white to orange and then blood red during a total lunar eclipse on Wednesday.

The phenomenon was visible from every continent except Australia.

Total lunar eclipses occur during a full moon, when the satellite is directly opposite the sun with the earth between them.

The title of this feature comes from an ancient Chinese belief that the moon was eaten during the eclipse. In fact, the Chinese term for an eclipse is 'chih', which also means 'to eat'.

Aficionados will be able to catch the next total lunar eclipse on in August 2007.

Click on the images above to see the full picture.

Photographs: Getty Images

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