UFO sightings, for the most part, are something that started happening in the 20th century. However, one of the most famous, most widely witnessed UFO incidents in history happened nearly 500 years ago.
In 1566, the citizens of Basel, Switzerland, saw strange celestial phenomena on three separate occasions: the 27th and 28th of July, and the 7th of August.
The first of these phenomena took place around sunset after a day of clear skies. Suddenly, the sun started shrinking and fading until it seemed to be no brighter than the full moon. The sky around it started getting dark, and red blotches seemed to appear on the sun’s surface. The moon that night turned blood red. All the people in the city and the lands around it saw these events take place.
At sunrise the next morning, the sun had the same appearance it had on the previous evening. Everything in the city was lit with an eerie blood-red light. After these events, the sun and moon returned to their normal appearance and behavior.
At sunrise on August 7, the inhabitants of Basel saw large black spheres rushing about in front of the sun with great speed. They were heard to make a chattering noise which Basel’s citizens described as seeming as if they were engaged in a fight of some kind. Many of these spheres became a fiery red color and then seemed to crumble into nothing. After this display came to an end. the celestial phenomena over Basel was not observed again.
This account raises some interesting questions. If these phenomena were natural, why were they so different from each other?
The sun became blotchy but the moon turned completely red. The sun shrank and faded, but no mention is made of the moon doing so. The spheres moving about in the air are completely unlike either the sun’s or moon’s changes, though they still appeared in front of the sun. How could a single natural phenomenon produce such varied effects? It is also worth noting that these things started happening after a clear day, when there were no clouds or smoke in the air that could have produced strange optical effects.
It is worth noting how similar this incident is to one that occurred over Nuremberg, Germany, just five years earlier. In that case, the sun had turned partly, but not entirely, a blood red color, and a number of spheres, rods, and crosses of various colors seemed to come out of the sun and do battle with each other, which caused some to seem to burn up and fall to the Earth. The Nuremberg incident seems to be so similar that it must be related. But why would the same bizarre occurrence happen in two such widely separated places and nowhere else?
Then there is the matter of the noise these spheres made. If the people of Basel could hear them, they must have been fairly close to the city. This is also suggested by the fact that people in nearby cities did not see these phenomena. That means that the objects were large, but not enormous.
These phenomena were taking place in Earth’s atmosphere, they were not astronomical phenomena taking place on the sun or between the sun and the Earth. But what spherical objects could possibly be flying about in the air over Basel in 1566?
It is difficult to see the celestial phenomena over Basel as natural phenomena. There is no known natural phenomenon that could account for the things that were observed. The description of the behavior of the spheres as being like a battle also suggests that these phenomena were artificial, the product of some kind of intelligence.
The people of 1566 interpreted this event as a battle between the forces of Heaven and Hell. Many modern people have come to believe that what the citizens of Basel witnessed was the result of some sort of alien activity that culminated in a battle in which many craft were destroyed. While not everybody agrees with this interpretation, nobody has so far been able to come up with a credible alternate explanation.