Mount Etna Europe's tallest volcano lit up the night with spewing lava — and the photos are astonishing

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Mount Etna, Europe's tallest volcano and one of the most active in the world, put on an amazing light show over Sicily Monday.

Etna, at 10,926 feet, is the highest volcano in mainland Europe. play

Etna, at 10,926 feet, is the highest volcano in mainland Europe.

(REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello)
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ROME (Reuters) - Bright lava lit up the night sky on the Italian island of Sicily on Monday.

The source: Mount Etna, Europe's tallest volcano, and one of the most active in the world. For the last two years Etna's been largely dormant, but it sprung to life with bright orange lava spewing out high over the Mediterranean Island, eventually easing off by Tuesday morning.

Here are the amazing photos of the event, along with fast facts you need to know about the activity at Etna:

Etna, at 10,926 feet, is the highest volcano in mainland Europe.



It can burst into action several times a year.

It can burst into action several times a year. play

It can burst into action several times a year.

(REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello)



Catania airport, situated within 31 miles of the volcano, remained open, but authorities were tracking the movements of the ash cloud.

Catania airport, situated within 31 miles of the volcano, remained open, but authorities were tracking the movements of the ash cloud. play

Catania airport, situated within 31 miles of the volcano, remained open, but authorities were tracking the movements of the ash cloud.

(REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello)



The last major, life-threatening eruption was in 1992.

The last major, life-threatening eruption was in 1992. play

The last major, life-threatening eruption was in 1992.

(REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello)



Back then, authorities dynamited the sides of the mountain, creating channels for the lava to flow through in order to keep it away from the nearby village of Zafferana.

Back then, authorities dynamited the sides of the mountain, creating channels for the lava to flow through in order to keep it away from the nearby village of Zafferana. play

Back then, authorities dynamited the sides of the mountain, creating channels for the lava to flow through in order to keep it away from the nearby village of Zafferana.

(REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello)

 

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Nothing so drastic was necessary this time around, since there was a much smaller lava flow.

Nothing so drastic was necessary this time around, since there was a much smaller lava flow. play

Nothing so drastic was necessary this time around, since there was a much smaller lava flow.

(REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello)



The current activity at Mount Etna is not expected to be life-threatening.

The current activity at Mount Etna is not expected to be life-threatening. play

The current activity at Mount Etna is not expected to be life-threatening.

(REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello)