The meteors reach speeds of about 36 miles per second and are heated up to thousands of degrees.
As they vaporise in the atmosphere, they create bright tails of light that zip across the sky.
The Royal Observatory Greenwich in London said: “In some Catholic traditions, the Perseids is also known as ‘the tears of St Lawrence’, due to its peak roughly coinciding with the date which the Saint achieved martyrdom.”
The meteor shower is also associated with the Roman god Priapus, who was believed to have fertilised fields once a year on the day of the shower’s peak.
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