If skies clear tonight, look for a slender crescent moon alongside brilliant Venus, high in the southwestern sky after sunset. Look closely for the faint outline of the "dark" portion of the moon's disk, the part that is not bathed in direct sunlight. It's dimly illuminated by "earthshine" -- sunlight bounced off the Earth onto the moon's surface. Leonardo da Vinci was the first to explain the phenomenon.
FRANK ROYLANCEThe Baltimore Sun