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Dots or patches of sunlight visible along the edge of the darkened moon's disk in the seconds before and after totality during a full solar eclipse, caused by sunlight passing through valleys in the moon's uneven topography.
[After Francis Baily (1774-1844), British astronomer who first observed them in 1836.]
(Astronomy) the brilliant points of sunlight that appear briefly around the moon, just before and after a total eclipse
[C19: named after Francis Baily (died 1844), English astronomer who described them]
Bai′ly's beads′(ˈbeɪ liz)
spots of sunlight encircling the moon immediately before and after a total solar eclipse.
[1865–70; after Francis Baily (1774–1844), English astronomer]