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©1999 by Richard Nolle


WOW!OCT 11, 1999 - Hypothetical Planets is astronomer Paul Schlyter's fascinating summary of the history and astronomy of a number of hypothetical planets and moons - and of Nemesis, legendary companion star to the Sun. (A Nemesis-like brown dwarf star in the outer Oort Cloud has been the the subject of much speculation lately, what with independent scientific teams making headlines recently, postulating the existence of just such a body based on statistical analysis of comet orbits.) A couple of Schlyter's subjects are no strangers to anyone who's been around astrology for a while. For example there's the hypothetical intra-Mercurial planet Vulcan, originally postulated to explain irregularities in Mercury's orbit (which were later explained by Einstein's General Theory of Relativity). And then there's Earth's "other Moon" Lilith, the existence of which was proposed by Georg Waltemath in 1898 but disproved that same year when a predicted solar transit failed to materialize. (That doesn't stop some astrologers from using it in their horoscopes, as Schlyter notes.) Well, at least Nemesis still shows some promise!

Technical note: Web Site Garage rates Hypothetical Planets fair over-all and - alas - poor in load time (32.25 seconds with a 28.8k modem). In comparison, the page you're now reading rates good in both categories, with a load time of 10.53 seconds at 28.8k.

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