A Pink Rainbow


I SPENT Sunday, August 21, at Mr. Tennyson's house, Aldworth, near Haslemere. The house stands on an elevated ledge of the Blackdown range, looking over the Weald towards the Brighton Downs, between east and south-east. About sunset the deep red of the south-eastern sky attracted our attention, and while we were looking at it we saw stretching across it a well-marked rainbow, but of a uniform red or pink colour, which Mrs. Tennyson compares, in a note I have just had from her, to a “pink postage-stamp” —not the one now in use, but the last discarded one. This was seen distinctly by Mrs. Tennyson, Mr. Hallam Tennyson, and myself for, I think, more than a minute. Mr. Hallam went to call his father, who was in another room, but before he came, “the bow,” to quote Mr. Tennyson's words, “had assumed its usual colours, which were, however, very faint.” Mrs. Tennyson says the pink colour “was visible for a very little time just at sunset, and then I saw a dull olive green at the lower edge.” After that, as Mr. Tennyson says, we all saw the vanishing ghost, as it were, of an ordinary rainbow. The actual uniform redness came just at sunset, as marked in the almanac we consulted–ten minutes past seven.

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M., A. A Pink Rainbow. Nature 24, 431–432 (1881). https://doi.org/10.1038/024431c0

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