The Sun has an outer atmosphere of plasma known as the corona (from the Latin word for “crown”). The corona extends millions of kilometers into space, is exponentially hotter than the Sun’s visible surface, and contains particles of highly ionized iron. While invisible to the naked eye during normal daylight, the Sun’s corona may be viewed during a total solar eclipse. The corona is considered one of the most spectacular events during an eclipse and throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries astronomers have worked to capture its beauty in sketches and composite photographs. Below are a selection of images from a variety of volumes held by the Irvin Department.