May 28, 585 B.C.—An Eclipse Ends a War The most famous solar eclipse of classical times occurred in the midst of a battle between the Medes and the Lydians. The two armies were locked in battle when "the day was turned into night." (This eclipse had been predicted by Thales, the Greek astronomer and philosopher, but the prediction was probably not known to the warring nations.) According to the Greek historian Herodotus, both sides regarded the eclipse as an omen and immediately ceased hostilities, thereby ending a six year war. They signed a peace treaty and cemented the bond between their nations with a double marriage.