BRUNO AND THE ECLIPSE
On February 17, 1600, Giordano Bruno was to be burned at the stake in Rome for promulgating opinions contrary to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, especially those dealing with the plurality of worlds and aspects of magic and divination (He was specifically accused of humming "My name is John Wellington Welles / I'm a dealer in magic and spells," while working).
As he was being tied to the stake he predicted that an eclipse would occur on that day, February 17th, striking fear into the hearts of every onlooker and resulting in his being set free. Unfortunately, the only eclipse in historical times that took place on February 17th occurred in 478 BCE, when February didn't even exist (NB: Some scholars dispute this, arguing it did exist, but was spelled Febuary). Bruno then asked if his immolation could be delayed until 2187, since he was sure one would occur in Rome then. The executioner laughed, saying it was more likely men would fly to the moon than be able to predict an eclipse almost six hundred years in the future.