An interception or obscuration of the light of the sun, moon, or other luminous body, by the intervention of some other body, either between it and the eye, or between the luminous body and that illuminated by it. A lunar eclipse is caused by the moon passing through the earth's shadow; a solar eclipse, by the moon coming between the sun and the observer. A satellite is eclipsed by entering the shadow of its primary. The obscuration of a planet or star by the moon or a planet, though of the nature of an eclipse, is called an occultation. The eclipse of a small portion of the sun by Mercury or Venus is called a transit of the planet.
- The partial or complete obscuring, relative to a designated observer, of one celestial body by another.
- The period of time during which such an obscuration occurs.
- A temporary or permanent dimming or cutting off of light.
- A fall into obscurity or disuse; a decline: "A composer . . . often goes into eclipse after his death and never regains popularity” ( Time).
- A disgraceful or humiliating end; a downfall: Revelations of wrongdoing helped bring about the eclipse of the governor's career.
- To cause an eclipse of.
- To obscure; darken.
- To obscure or diminish in importance, fame, or reputation.
- To surpass; outshine: an outstanding performance that eclipsed the previous record.