“The cosmic iceberg came in from the direction of the Sun, so no one saw its approach until the sky exploded. Seconds later, the shock wave flattened two thousand square kilometres of pine forest, and the loudest sound since the eruption of Krakatoa began to circle the world.
Had the cometary fragment been delayed a mere two hours on its age-long journey, the ten-megaton blast would have obliterated Moscow and changed the course of history.
The date was 30 June 1908.”
—Arthur C. Clarke in ‘The Hammer of God’