Astronomy clubs and scientists held events around the country today to enable the public to safely observe the transit of the Sun by Mercury.

Experts warned people that looking at the Sun with the naked eye or ordinary telescopes or binoculars was extremely dangerous and could lead to severe eye damage.

Around 13 times every century Mercury, the smallest planet in the solar system, passes between Earth and the Sun.

It was possible to see its silhouette move across the face of the Sun, but only by using specialist telescopes.

The transit began shortly after midday and finished just before 8pm.

Weather conditions were good earlier in the day, but it worsened in many parts around the country.

NASA has released footage of Mercury transiting the Sun.

The event will happen again in 2019 and then 2032, but experts say this will be the best opportunity to see it from Ireland for some time to come.

Analysis: Mercury rising - how to safely watch the planet's transit past the Sun