How To: Discover the Origin of the Planetary Names?

Discover the Origin of the Planetary Names?

Hello! I invite all the readers, interested in space, to discover the origin of the names of the planets in our galaxy. Just simply follow my words,...

Step 1: Planets and Stars

Eleven planets represent our Solar System. They are named after gods.

The names of the planets are: Moon, Mercury, Mars, Venus, Earth, Neptune, Uranus, Aldebaran, Rigel, Saturn. Among the most important and the biggest stars are: Wolf 359, the Sun, Sirius A, Pollux, Arcturus, Antares, Betelgeuse, VV Cephei A and VY Canis Majoris.

The origin of the names of the planets leads us back, to the ancient Roman and Greek civilization, in the time before their empires. We can travel back into mythology and pick the names of our week days on the way. Open your eyes and continue discovering with me.

Step 2: The Amazing Myths

Planets and ancient gods are all connected in the myths we know. I would like to share just a few of them with you. Some of the old words and names might be a bit difficult to understand. I hope you'll have no problems.

Gaia from Ancient Greek means land or earth. She was the Earth goddess in Greek ancient religion. Gaia was the mother of all: the gods and Titans. They were descended from her union with Uranus (the sky). The sea-gods were made in her union with Pontus (the sea).

She gave birth to Giants after mating with Tartarus (the hell-pit) and mortal creatures were sprung or born from her earthy flesh.

  • In North Germanic mythology, the moon is personified as a god, Máni. Luna (Roman) was an ancient moon goddess. The Latin word luna means 'moon'. The name is the root of words lunar and lunatic.

Egyptian Isis is also known as a moon deity and the goddess of the sun.

Mercury is named after a Greek god Hermes, who was in Rome named Mercury. He is known to be a very fast messenger of the gods and the god of trade. His name is connected to the Latin word merx (merchandise). The name Wednesday originates from Middle English Wednesdei, 'day of Wodanaz', a calque of the day of Mercury.

The month May originates from the name Maia, Roman goddess, mother of Mercury by Jupiter and daughter of Atlas.

Step 3: The Galaxy We Live In

Our home, the Earth is a part of the Milky way galaxy. A galaxy is full of stars, stellar remnants, gas and dust. There's also much talk about the mysterious dark matter. Around 100.000.000.000 stars represent an average galaxy.

For example, a light year is the distance light can travel in the era of a year. It makes me wonder, what could be possible for humans to do in outer space,....

Thank you for reading! I hope this text was useful.

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