This article/post is mostly taken from the work of Gerard Hickson in his 1922 book, “Kings Dethroned”. He lays clearly, concisely and irrefutably, how astronomer by astronomer in the 16th and 17th centuries began in error by the way they measured distance from Earth to Sun, Moon and planets and then subsequently came up with preposterous theory after theory, over decades, to cover up there errors, that continues to this very day.
From Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, Halley, Newton in Europe across the pond in the 1900’s to Einstein and NASA, astronomy has used the same errors in calculating distance of stars and planets in what is called Astrometry.
In the 1920’s, Gerrard Hickson proves conclusively, using their own geometry, math and theories of heliocentrism, gravity, relativity, etc., are gravely in gross error.
In no uncertain terms this work blows apart the Sun centered, Earth a sphere rotating, gravity based heliocentric theory that has been taught in every classroom on our flat plane Earth for the past century or more.
(Original book title)
Kings Dethroned; A History of the Evolution of Astronomy from the time of the Roman Empire up to the present day; showing it to be an amazing set of blunders founded upon an error made in the Second Century B C.
“But I can conceive that in the course of time this Relative Phantasmagoria
might come to be regarded as science,
and be taught as such to the children of the near future.”
~ G. Hickson, April 1921, in reference to
newly proposed Theory of Relativity by Albert Einstein
THE EARTH STANDS STILL
It would seem that Copernican Astronomy had reached its highest development about the year 1882, and then began to decline, or rather, to fall to pieces.
The first evidence of this devolution is to be found in the Michelson-Morley experiment of 1887, at Chicago; the result of which might have undeceived even the most devoted believer in the theory of a spinning earth.
Professor Michelson was one of the physicists foremost in determining the Velocity of Light, while he has recently been described in the New York Times as America’s greatest physicist; and it was he who—working in collaboration with Morley— in 1887 made the most painstaking experiments by means of rays of light for the purpose of testing, verifying, or proving by physical science, what really was the velocity of the earth.
To express this more clearly. Astronomers have for a very long time stated that the earth travels
round the sun with a speed of more than eighteen miles a second, or sixty-six thousand miles an hour.
Without in any way seeking to deny this statement, but really believing it to be thereabouts correct, Michelson and Morley undertook their experiments in order to put it to a practical test; just in the same way as we might say “The greengrocer has sent us a sack of potatoes which is said to contain 112 pounds weight; we will weigh it ourselves to see if that is correct.”
More technically, the experiment was to test what was the velocity with which the earth moved in its orbit round the sun relative to the aether. A very well illustrated account of that experiment will be found in The Sphere, published in London, June 11th, 1921, and it is from that article I quote the following, verbatim :
“But to the experimenters’ surprise no difference was discernible. The experiment was tried through numerous angles, but the motion through the aether was NIL”!
Observe that the means employed represented the best that modern physical science could do to prove the movement of the earth through ethereal space, and the result showed that the earth did not move at all! “The motion through the aether was NIL.”
But the world of astronomy has not accepted that result, for it continues to preach the old dogma; it appears that they are willing to accept the decisions of physicists when it suits their case, but reject them when otherwise.
And so they still maintain the fabulous theory that the earth is rushing through space at eleven hundred miles a minute; which, as they would say in America, ” Surely is some traveling.” It must be faster than a bullet from a Lewis gun.
What I have now to record, I do with regret, and only because my sense of duty in the pursuit of truth compels me. It is the circumstance that Sir George Airy, who retired from his position as Astronomer Royal in 1881, related— some nine years later— how he had for some time been harassed by a suspicion that certain errors had crept into some of the computations published in 1866, and that, though he had set himself seriously to the work of revision, his powers were no longer what they had been, and he was never able to examine sufficiently into the work.
Then he spoke of a “grievous error that had been committed in one of the first steps,” and pathetically added —“My spirit in the work was broken, and I have never heartily proceeded with it since.” My sympathy goes out to Sir George in his tribulation of the spirit due to advancing age, while I am not unmindful of myself, for I realize that in him I have lost one who would have been a friend, who would have listened when I said that all was not as it should be with the science of astronomy; and stood by my side, encouraging and helping, when I, younger and stronger, strove to put it right.
I do not know whether Sir George Airy was influenced or not by the result of the Michelson-Morley experiment, but it is at least a noteworthy coincidence that he made those comments only three years later; but in any case science has need of him, and of such evident open-mindedness and sincerity as his, now not content to believe that the earth did not move, further experiments were carried out by Nordmeyer in the year 1903, to test the earth’s velocity in relation to the Intensities of Light from the heavenly bodies, but he also failed to discover any movement.
Even then astronomers were determined to hold on to their ancient theories, and deny the facts which had been twice demonstrated by the best means known to modern physical science.
They preferred to believe the theory that the earth was gyrating round the sun with the velocity of a Big Bertha shell, and tried to account for the physicists’ failure to discover its movement by finding fault with the aether (or ether). It is not only difficult to understand why they should prefer theory to fact in this manner, and so deceive themselves; but it is strange also that the world in general could tolerate such nonsense.
However, the results of several years’ speculations concerning ether and space were set forth in the year 1911, in a series of lectures by Professor Ormoff, Onspensky and Mingelsky, at Petrograd. It was suggested that light was not permitted to come from the stars to earth in a straight line, because some quality in ethereal space caused it to follow the earth as it moved around the orbit; and that might account for the failure of the experiments of 1887 and 1903.
In other words it was suggested that we cannot see straight, or that the image of the star as
we see it twinkling there is coming to us in a curve—following the earth like a search-light, while it describes the five terrestrial motions ascribed to it by Newton.
When stated even more plainly it means that when we think we see a star overhead we are mistaken, for that is merely the end of a ray of light coming to us from a star which— in the material body— may be millions of miles to the right of us, or it might even be behind us; as in diagram 26.
N.B. — A much greater curvature than we have illustrated in the diagram has since been suggested in all seriousness by leading astronomers from the platform of the R.A.S. at Burlington House, Nov. 6th, 1919, in these words —“…. All and if they traveled far enough they would regain the starting point.”
Moreover, Ormoff, Onspensky and Mingelsky had come to the conclusion that nothing was fixed in the universe; so that while the moon goes round the earth and the earth and the planets go round the sun, the sun itself is moving with probably a downward tendency, carrying the whole Copernican solar system with it. Further, even the stars themselves have left their moorings, so that the entire visible universe is drifting; no one knows where.
In brief, these Petrograd lectures of 1911 introduced many new ideas such as those which have become familiar to the reader in Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, since the year following the great World-War lines were curved.
“Nothing now remains of that astronomy which was once said to be the most perfect of the sciences; and imagination— stretched even to its uttermost— has failed to support it in the face of reason, and yet these last two years since Relativity became the vogue have produced the most remarkable figures astronomy has ever known.” ~ G. Hickson
MARVELS OF ASTRONOMY
Theory of Relativity is so complicated, that when it first came to the public notice it was said that there were probably not more than twelve people in the world capable of understanding it. But public interest was aroused, partly by the novelty of Einstein’s hypothesis, and partly by the spectacular manner in which it had been received by the British Royal Astronomical Society on the night of November 6th, 1919, until Mr. Eugene Higgins, of U.S.A., offered a prize of 5,000 dollars for the best explanation of relativity, in the form of an essay, describing it so that the general public could understand what it was all about.
The prize was won by Mr. L. Bolton, London; and his essay can be found in the Scientific American (New York and London), June 1921, and also in the West¬minster Gazette, London, June 14th, 1921. The editor of the Gazette found it necessary to remark, when publishing the essay, that “ Our readers will probably agree that even when stated in its simplest form it remains a tough proposition.”
That is just the trouble with it. It is about as far removed from ordinary “fact” and “plain English” as it is possible for anything to be; indeed it is so intangible that it may well be that Einstein can form a mental picture of it himself, while he is at the same time unable to convey his meaning to others through the medium of ordinary language.
The thing is elusive; abounding in inference, suggestion, half-truth and ambiguity; wherefore it follows that any discussion of it, such as we propose to enter upon, must of necessity be almost equally refined. It might seem tortuous to some readers, and yet be like a very entertaining game of chess to others; while it certainly will be useful to those who are willing to traverse the long and difficult labyrinth that leads to truth.
Relativity is clever; but it belongs to the same category as Newton’s Law of Gravitation and the Kant-Herschell-Laplace Nebular Hypothesis, in as far as it is a superfine effort of the imagination seeking to maintain an impossible theory of the universe in defiance of every fact against it. . . . Let us see what we can do with it.
First, we will let Professor Einstein himself tell us what he means by Relativity, in the words he used in the opening of his address at Princeton University. U.S.A.; ~
“What we mean by relative motion in a general sense is perfectly plain to everyone. If we think of a waggon moving along a street we know that it is possible to speak of the waggon at rest, and the street in motion, just as well as it is to speak of the waggon in motion and the street at rest. That, however, is a very special part of the ideas involved in the principle of Relativity.”
That would be amusing if we read it in a comic paper, or if Mutt and Jeff had said it ; but when Professor Einstein says it in a lecture at the Princeton University, we are expected not to laugh; that is the only difference. It is silly, but I may not dismiss the matter with that remark, and so I will answer quite seriously that it is only possible for me to speak of the street moving while the waggon remains still— and to believe it— when I cast away all the experience of a lifetime and am no longer able to understand the evidence of my senses; which is insanity. Such self-deception as this is not reasoning; it is the negation of reason; which is the faculty of forming correct conclusions from things observed, judged by the light of experience.
It is unworthy of our intelligence and a waste of our greatest gift; but that introduction serves very well to illustrate the kind of illusion that lies at the root of Relativity.
Throughout the whole of his theories there is evidence that Einstein was thinking almost entirely of their application to astronomy, but it was inevitable that this should involve him with physics, so that he had then to engage upon a series of arguments intended to show how his principles would work out on the plane of general science.
The first may be said to be the motive that inspired him; while the second consists of complications and difficulties which he could not avoid. . . . And when he suggested that the street might be moving while the waggon with its wheels revolving was standing still, he was asking us to imagine that in a similar manner the earth we stand upon might be moving while the stars that pass in the night stand still.
It is a Case of Appeal, where Einstein appeals in the name of a convicted Copernican Astronomy against the judgment of Michelson – Morley, Nordmeyer, physics, fact, experience, observation and reason.
We, on the other hand, are counsel for the prosecution, judge and jury.
Under the general heading of Relativity, Einstein includes an assortment of new ideas— each of
which depends upon another,— and each of which contributes to support the whole. He says
that there is no ether, and that light is a material thing which comes to us through empty space.
Consequently light has weight, and, therefore, is subject to the law of gravitation, so that the light coming from a star may bend under its own weight, or deviate from the straight line by the attraction of the sun, or of any other celestial body it has to pass in its journey to the observer on earth. . . . In that case it follows that no star is in reality where it appears to be, for it may be even as suggested in diagram 26.
Consequently the heavenly bodies may be much further away than they have hitherto been supposed to be, and every method which is based upon the geometry of Euclid and the triangulation of Hipparchus will fail to discover the distance to a star; because its real position is no longer known. Wherefore Einstein has invented a new kind of geometry, in order to calculate the positions of the stars by what is nothing more or less than metaphysics.
We have always been accustomed to measure things by the three dimensions of Euclid— length, breadth and thickness, but Einstein (thinking of astronomy), says that “Time is a Fourth Dimension”; and proposes that henceforth things should be measured on the understanding that they have four dimensions— length, breadth, time, and thickness.
The introduction of “time” as a fourth proportion of things makes it necessary for him to invent a number of new terms, and also to change the names of some of those that we already know and commonly use, thus, for example — “ Space” is changed to “Continuum,” while a “point” is called an “event,” time— as we have always understood it— no longer exists, and is said to be a fourth dimension; while there are no such things as “infinity” or “eternity” in relativity.
That is the case for Einstein.
It is the essence of his Relativity, clearly stated in plain English. The details of it represent an immense amount of labour of a refined character, the whole thing is very imaginative, and the work of an artist in fine-spun reflections; indeed, it is of that double-distilled intricacy which finds favour with those who like mental gymnastics and hair-splitting argument; and are fond of marvellous figures.
But I can conceive that in the course of time this Relative Phantasmagoria might come to be regarded as science, and be taught as such to the children of the near future; and that is to be prevented only by dealing with it now! which I will do, though I grieve to give so much space to a matter which only calls for it because it is pernicious.
EINSTEIN’S THEORIES EXAMINED
Whatever it is that Relativity is supposed to establish is to be disproved backwards, beginning with the example which Einstein puts forward — where an observer standing at the centre of a rotating disk is watching someone else on. The same disk measuring the circumference of a circle round the observer by repeated applications of a small measuring rod; and afterwards measuring the diameter of the circle in the same way.
He says that because the disk is in motion, the small measuring rod will appear to the observer (at the centre) to be contracted, so that the person who is measuring (whom I will call “ B ”) will have to apply the rod more often to go round that circle than he would if the disk was at rest. That is not true! .
If B actually lays the rod (or foot rule) down upon the disk correctly, the number of applications to go round the circle will be the same whether the disk is moving or not, and the observer at the centre will see that it is so, if he is not made too dizzy to count. On the other hand, if B does not lay the rod down and measure the circle as one would expect, but only walks around the disk with the rod in the air (as in diagram 27) then the rotation of the disk will disturb him, so that he has to make an effort to preserve his balance; with the result that he can not place the rod as accurately as he would if the disk were not in motion; and in that case it may take either more or less applications of the rule to go completely round than it would if the disk were still; and that difference would be seen by the observer at the centre— not as an optical illusion! (as Einstein implies) but in reality; a result that is entirely physical, and due to physical causes.
When walking across the disk and measuring the diameter, B is not disturbed to anything like the
same degree as in walking round the circumference, and so he measures the diameter more accurately. Most of us have at some time or other witnessed the antics of a clown trying to run or walk upon a spinning disk in a circus, and this enables us to understand how such a motion would affect our friends performing on Einstein’s revolving table. His example is merely amusing, it serves no useful purpose, and proves nothing; unless, indeed, it proves by analogy that the inhabitants on a spinning earth would be rendered as incapable of acting and judging things correctly as his examples.
What we have always known as a “point” in the terms of Euclid, Einstein calls an “event!” but if
words have any meaning a point and an event are two totally different things; for a point is a mark, a spot or place, and is only concerned in the consideration of material things; while an event is an occurrence, it is something that happens. . . . There is as much difference between them as there is between the sentence “This is a barrel of apples,” and “These apples came from New Zealand.”
While claiming “time” as a fourth dimension, Einstein explains that “by dimension we must understand merely one of four independent quantities which locate an event in space.” . . . This is to imply that the other three dimensions which are in common use are independent quantities, which is not the case; for length, breadth and thickness are essentially found in combination; they co-exist in each and every physical thing, so that they are related— hence they are not independent quantities.
On the contrary, time IS an independent quantity.
It is independent of any one, or all, the three proportions of material things, it is not in any way related; and therefore cannot be used as a fourth dimension.
We know that an event is an occurrence; and we find that what Einstein really means by his fourth dimension is “merely the time by which we locate something that happened in space;” and that is just what time has always meant— the period between one event and another. . . Length, breadth and thickness, are proportions of each and every finite thing; while time is infinite.
The dimensions are finite; while time is abstract.
Strangely enough, while Einstein claims that everything is in motion and nothing is stable, he allows one thing, and one thing only, to remain outside the realm of relativity, independent of everything else; and that is what he calls his Second Law, the Einstein “Law of the Constancy of the Velocity of Light.”
He claims that the velocity of light is constant under all circumstances, and therefore is absolute. This is a blunder of the first magnitude, but I do not imagine that he fell into it through any oversight; for it is quite evident that he was driven into this false position.
He was compelled to say that the velocity of light is constant, because, if he did not his new geometry would be useless; for after all his geometry amounts to this:—He begins by assuming that light is a material thing, so that it is affected by the gravitational attraction of any celestial bodies it has to pass on its way to earth, which causes it to deviate from its appointed course so that it comes to us with more or less curve, according to its distance, and according to the bodies it encounters in its passage.
But it always travels at the same velocity, and so, if we can estimate— for example— how much the light of Canopus is made to curve by the gravitation of other bodies between it and the earth (which would be done by Kepler’s and Newton’s laws), we can calculate how much longer its journey is made by those windings, twists, and turns. Then we can time its arrival, because— although it has to travel so much further than its distance would be in a straight line— it always travels at the same 671,090,400 miles an hour; or 186,414 miles every second.
It is true that Einstein uses a number of signs and symbols which are supposed to simplify the process; though it is probable that they do no more than merely make it more mysterious, but the plain English of it is as I have shown; and so we perceive that Einstein uses time pretty much in the same way as we do, and not as a dimension at all.
Thus we have discovered that the things which he re-christened an Event, a Fourth Dimension, and a New Geometry, are false to the titles he has given them; the words as he uses them are misnomers, therefore we dismiss them; for they are no longer of any use or interest to us.
Now we are free to deal with his Law of the Constancy of the Velocity of Light. We are told that Light is a material thing, and that a beam of light is deflected from a straight line by the gravitation of any and every thing that lies near its course as it passes within their sphere of influence; and we are further assured that light always maintains a uniform speed of 186,414 miles a second.
We have, however, to remind Professor Einstein that the “Velocity of Light 186,414 miles a second ” was determined as the result of experiments by the physicists— Fizeau, Foucault, Cornu, Michelson and Newcomb, all of which experiments were conducted within the earth’s atmosphere, on terra-firma; the last between Fort Myer and the Washington Monument each other, are equivalent in expressing the laws of natural phenomena.”
That is what the law is stated to mean. It may not appear very inviting to the general reader, but he will find it quite interesting as we proceed, though it is, of course, of very great importance to every student of general science and mechanics.
” The motion of each locality on the earth is constantly changing from hourto hour, but no corresponding changes occur in electromagnetic action.”
The observer is located on the surface of an earth which is rotating on its axis, and at the same time travelling through space at many thousands of miles an hour, consequently his place, or locality, is continually changing with respect to an imaginary point fixed in space. Notwithstanding this change of place, electro-magnetic laws appear to act precisely as they would if this place was not changing its position with respect to that point.
“Uranus is 1,800,000,000,000 miles from the sun”.
Light and Gravity
There remains now but one last defence of the Theory of Relativity, and that is the statement that light is really matter, and that it is subject to gravitation. (Test No. 2.)
In order to put this to the test, expeditions of British Astronomers were sent to Sobral in North
Brazil, and to the island of Principe on the west coast of Africa, to observe the total eclipse of the sun on May 29th, 1919, and the results they obtained seemed to justify Einstein’s main test, so that as a consequence the Royal Astronomical Society held a remarkable meeting at Burlington House on November 6th,1919; and on the next day all the world of astronomy did homage to Einstein.
The results of the eclipse appeared to satisfy the gathering at Burlington House. Sir Frank Dyson, the Astronomer Royal, described the work of the expeditions, and convinced the meeting that the results were definite and conclusive.
Dr. Crommelin explained that the purpose of the expeditions was to test whether the light of the stars that are nearly in a line with the sun is bent by its attraction, and if so, whether the amount of bending is that indicated by the Newtonian law of gravitation, viz. : seven-eighths of a second at the sun’s limb, or the amount indicated by the new Einstein Theory; which postulates a bending just twice as great.
The results of the observations were 2.08 and 1.94 seconds respectively. The combined result was 1.98 seconds, with a probable error of about 6 per cent. This was a strong confirmation of Einstein’s Theory, which gave a shift of 1.75 seconds.
The fourth dimension was discussed, and it appeared that Euclidian straight lines could not exist in Einstein’s space. All lines were curved, and if they travelled far enough they would regain the starting point.
Mr. de Sitter had attempted to find the radius of space. He gave reasons for putting it at
about a billion times the distance from the earth to the sun, or about sixteen million light-years!
This was eighty times the distance assigned by Dr. Shapley to the most distant stellar cluster known.
The Fourth Dimension had been the subject of vague speculation for a long time, but they seemed at last to have been brought face to face with it.
Even the President of the Royal Society, in stating that they had just listened to “one of the most
Momentous”, if not the most momentous, pronouncements of human thought,” confessed that no one had yet succeeded in stating in clear language what the theory of Einstein really was. . . . But he was confident that “the Einstein Theory must now be reckoned with, and that our conceptions of the fabric of the universe must be fundamentally altered.”
Subsequent speakers joined in congratulating the observers, and agreed in accepting their results.
More than one, however, including Professor Newell, of Cambridge, hesitated as to the full extent of the inferences that had been drawn, and suggested that the phenomena might be due to an unknown solar atmosphere further in its extent than had been supposed, and with unknown properties.
With such a reception as this it is not surprising that the followers of Copernicus everywhere should be almost willing to believe in Relativity whether they understood it or not ; but the Royal Astronomical Society might have been a great deal more careful than they were, as we shall see.
That the Einstein Theories were automatically coming to be regarded as accepted science, is evidenced by the fact that the Astronomer Royal himself introduced them into a public lecture on eclipses which he gave at the Old Vic. in the February of 1921. Coming to the description of the eclipse of May 29th, a slide was thrown upon the screen to illustrate the result of the observations that were said to verify Einstein’s Theory.
The lecturer described how certain stars which were in the same direction as the sun could, of course, not be seen in the ordinary way in the day time, but when the sun was obscured, as at the time of a total eclipse, they could be seen through a smoked glass or telescope.
The exact position of these stars was known to astronomy, but if Einstein’s Theory was correct the light coming from them to the observer would be bent as it passed near the sun, so that they would not appear to be in their true positions. Then he showed how the Einstein Theory was verified; for the stars were observed to be a little further from the sun than their theoretical or true positions.
But the Law of Gravitation is “That mutual action between masses of matter by virtue of which every such mass tends toward every other, &c., &c.”
Observe that it tends toward; it attracts; it pulls ; therefore— if light was matter, and was affected by the gravitation of the sun, the stars would be seen nearer to the sun; and not as stated by the lecturer and illustrated on the slide.
In diagram 29 the crosses XX suggest the normal, true, or theoretical positions of the stars with respect to the sun. If Einstein’s theories had been right the stars would be seen nearer to the sun than the crosses, but the Astronomer Royal demonstrated the fact that they were actually further away!
Such was the real result of the solar eclipse of May 29th, 1919. The circumstances had been laid before the Royal Astronomical Society in Burlington House on November 6th, and yet, for some unaccountable reason they failed to perceive that the result was contrary to the Law of Gravitation; and clearly demonstrated the fact that Einstein’s Theory is false.
N.B.— The real cause of the displacement of these stars from their true positions is known to
the author, and will be explained in a book sequel to this work ; but he does not consider that explanation necessary to the present discussion. Einstein’s Theory is disproved; alternative or no alternative.
MARVELS OF ASTRONOMY
Nothing now remains of that astronomy which was once said to be the most perfect of the sciences; and imagination— stretched even to its uttermost— has failed to support it in the face of reason, and yet these last two years since Relativity became the vogue have produced the most remarkable figures astronomy has ever known.
In December 1920, Professor Michelson related how he had perfected an instrument known as an Interference-Refractometer, and how he had used it to measure the angular diameter of the star Betelgeuse, in the Belt of Orion; and found it to be 0.046 seconds of arc. That is to say that he found the measurement of this star as it appears to the eye (which is only like a glittering pin-point) to be 0.046″ from one side to the other, and that is one-twentieth part of a second of arc, or 1-72,000th part of a degree; very fine measurement indeed.
Professor Michelson, however, is a physicist, not especially interested with theories of light, and so, having invented the instrument and measured the apparent diameter of the star, his work was done.
Astronomers then took up the matter, and on referring to their records, found the distance of Betelgeuse to be 180 light-years; that is 180 times 6,000,000,000,000 miles, or one thousand and eighty billions of miles from the earth; and so they calculated that if a thing so far away appeared to be 1-72,000th part of a degree in diameter, its real diameter must be two hundred and sixty million miles!
Then the world of astronomy pointed with pride to the mighty star that was 260 million miles from one side to the other, and told how the sun was a million times bigger than the earth, while Betelgeuse was 27 million times bigger than the sun.
The actual size of Betelgeuse, however, depends upon its distance, and as we have shown in the chapter on “61 Cygni ” that the astronomers’ method of measuring stellar distance is absolutely useless, we know that they are entirely wrong in supposing Betelgeuse to be 1,080 billions— or any other number of billions— of miles from the earth. Therefore it follows that as they do not know its distance, they may not use its apparent diameter and divide that into unknown billions of miles. Being in reality quite ignorant of the distance of Betelgeuse, they have no legitimate means of forming any conception of its dimensions at all.
Those dimensions are to be ascertained by first finding the star’s real distance, which is something less than twenty thousand miles. Then that may be divided by Professor Michelson’s “0.046″, which will show the actual size of that twinkling little point of light known as “Betelgeuse” to be not much more than twenty-five feet!
It has since transpired that the distance to Betel¬geuse had been measured on three different occasions, each time with a different result. One of these showed it to be 654 billions, another made it 900 billions, while the other gave it as 180 light-years, or 1,080 billions of miles away; and it is surprising that astronomers did not realise the fact which was clearly demonstrated by these differences— that their methods of measuring stellar distance are not to be relied upon.
In the meantime we can see no reason why they preferred to use the greatest of the three various
estimates of the star’s distance— in conjunction with Michelson’s angular diameter— rather than the least, for that only seems to have had the effect of magnifying the dimensions of Betelgeuse to the uttermost.
While the excitement over Betelgeuse was at its height the universe loomed even larger than before, for Canopus and Rigel were then said to be “460 light-years away and they may be 1,000 or more.”
Meanwhile Dr. Crommelin gave us a scare with the story of how a comet called Pons-Winnecke was rushing toward the earth at a hundred thousand miles an hour, while Dr. Slipher discovered a nebulous mass that was gyrating round the firmament at eleven hundred miles a second ! !
This, so far, has never been surpassed, and “SPIRAL NEBULA NUMBER 584” still holds the record of being the fastest thing in creation; its velocity being so great that it could go from Liverpool to New York in two ticks of the clock. (Source)
Pons-Winnecke had been seen somewhere in Africa in January 1921, and it was predicted that this comet would be visible at London in June and this gave rise to much speculation. It was said that Pons-Winnecke might strike the earth with a fearful bump about the 26th of June, but Mr. E. W. Maunder said that though there might be a bump it is only a fog of gas after all; while Dr. Crommelin thought the comet might miss the earth this time, and so there appeared to be no danger.
Then Sir Richard Gregory said that if the head of Pons-Winnecke did hit the earth it might set the world on fire, but we were reassured again when he told us that there is about as much chance of the comet hitting the earth as of a random shot hitting a bird in full flight; yet it seemed strange that he should imagine a comet to be like a random shot in this well-ordered universe; unless, perchance, he had forgotten about the Law of Gravitation. And how are we to understand how the earth could be set on fire when he tells us that we may pass through the tail of a comet without harm because it is really a far higher vacuum than anything that can be produced in our laboratories?
Then what are we to think of it all when Professor Fowler tells us that we don’t know how a comet is formed, we don’t know where it comes from, and don’t seem really to know what it is?
He thought they may come from gases thrown off from the sun which are gradually cooled; but that made it even more difficult to understand how it could set the earth on fire, or what all the bother was about.
Nevertheless the discussion continued, until at last the leading authorities advanced the “Fascinating Theory that Pons-Winnecke may have come from a distance in space so great that it is impossible to think or speak of that distance in terms of miles.”
That took our breath away, for it appeared that the comet might come out of illimitable space, to wander amid the stars at its own sweet will, regardless of the Laws of Dynamics and Gravitation.
Even yet the romance is not complete — for after waiting in great expectation for several months the Secretary of the Royal Astronomical Society told us that “Pons” had been seen again! this time with only a stump of his original tail, though even this stump was five hundred million miles long, and seemed to be comprised mostly of gas and meteors.
It is not recorded how he knew the length of its tail, and nothing was said as to what had become of the remainder; but to cut a long tale short — the summer came and passed— but Pons-Winnecke never arrived! He was lost; and even now he may be wandering on and on, somewhere in fathomless space, no one knows whither; and nobody cares.
“The Ruddy Planet.”
At about the same period there was much ado about the planet MARS.
It had long been supposed that this planet was very much like the earth, but inhabited by a race of giants, probably about fifteen feet in height. Some straight lines which had been observed on the planet were thought to be irrigation canals made by men; and one could imagine fields of cabbages, cauliflowers, and spring onions growing along the banks; indeed one could imagine anything. And so, when wireless operators in various parts of the world began to hear strange noises which they could not account for (about the time of Pons-Winnecke) the rumour spread abroad that they might be wireless signals from Mars.
It was not suggested that the Martians might be sending these signals in reply to those we had thought of flashing to them in 1910, but it was supposed that the people on Mars might have been hearing things!; and thought our wireless operators were tic-tacking to them. So the possibility of sending messages to the ruddy planet by wireless telegraphy came to be discussed almost as much as the comet.
Astronomers said that although the earth is about seventeen million years old. Mars is very much older; therefore it was presumed that the Martians would probably be more advanced in knowledge than we are, and might have been using wireless for goodness knows how long, and had now discovered that we had a Marconi System.
The tappings and cracklings that were heard some¬times at night were rather uncanny, and could not be understood, but this was not because the Martian’s language was different than ours ; it was because the vibrations that affected the wireless carriers were really caused by the splitting of the ice around the pole!
Spring was advancing in the northern hemisphere, and the ice-fields were melting and breaking before the warmth of the advancing sun, so that the colliding and shifting of huge bergs disturbed the normal distribution of the magnetic currents from the north Pole.
Professor Pickering might have made this discovery if he had had time to think of it; but at that period he was busy studying the weather of Mars. I don’t think he knows any more about the weather on earth than the Meteorological Office, but I recollect that he told us it was snowing on that little old planet; and that was a very remarkable thing, if it was true—indeed it was remarkable whether it was true or not.
Time was when it was said that water ran uphill instead of down on Mars, and in the year 1910 AD, all sorts of schemes were proposed for signalling to the planet by means of bonfires and search-lights at night, or by using mirrors to reflect the sun’s rays by day.
It was all very interesting in its way, but very nonsensical— because the sun is always shining on
that side of Mars which is presented to us, whether it is day or night on our side of the earth; and so it would be impossible for the Martians — if there were any—to see our bonfires or our mirrors, because with them it must always be daylight, and they could not even see the earth itself!
This is because Mars goes round the sun on a greater orbit than the earth, while we travel on the inner circle, according to the Heliocentric Theory, (as shown in diagram 30). It is surprising that astronomers had not thought of this, but they will find that it is so, if they will only study their own astronomy.
But the time has come when all the romantic things that have been said about Mars must take their proper place among fairy tales, for if the distance to that planet is measured by two simultaneous observations, as I have advised for the measurement of the sun, it will be found to be never more than 15,000 miles from the observer, and too small altogether to be inhabited; too small even for Robinson Crusoe and his man Friday.
Before bringing this history of the evolution of modern astronomy to a close I have yet to mention the constellation of Hercules, which Dr. Shapley at Mount Vernon recently estimated to be about 36,000 light-years distant, or 200 times further off than Betelgeuse ; while we are now told that a star known as “ N.G.C. 7006 ” (which is one of those myriad twinkling little things in the Milky Way) has been found to be about 200,000 light-years distant; and this surely is the limit of even an astronomer’s imagination; for it means that it is so far off that it would take an electric current— travelling at the rate of 186,000 miles every second— two hundred thousand years to go from the earth to the Milky Way!
In conclusion I quote the following from an article which was published in London as recently as April 15th, 1922 :
“…By other methods most bodies in the heavens have been measured, and even weighed, and the results obtained stagger imagination. One of such methods consists in watching an object
through the spectroscope and making calculations from the shifting of the lines in the spectrum. In this way the mighty flames which leap from the surface of the sun have been measured.
Some years ago one flame was observed to shoot out with a velocity of at least 50 miles a second, and to attain a height of 350,000 miles! . . . The stars in general cannot be measured ; but the thing has been done in some cases, notably by Bessel, who, after three years’ observations of 61 Cygni, announced its approximate distance from the earth as not more than sixty billion miles! Yet this is one of our nearest neighbours among the distant suns. It is so close to us— comparatively— that we have learned a lot about it since Bessel made his calculations.
Scientists have shown that a difference of a mere twenty billion miles in distance from the earth is negligible, and that, though it is tearing through space at thirty miles a second, it would require about forty-thousand years to make a journey equal to its distance from the sun.”
It is difficult to tell whether the journal was joking or not; it appears to be so, but, nevertheless, the statements are those given out in all seriousness in the name of Astronomy. They are the things which are being taught in colleges and schools as scientific knowledge in this month of May, 1922; for which astronomers, the Educational Authorities, and the indifference of parents are responsible.
However, it is to be observed that— with the single exception of Alpha-Centauri— since Bessel estimated he distance of the first star to be sixty-three billion miles away, stellar distances have grown greater and greater, until at last we have this “ N.G.C. 7006,” said to be twenty thousand times further than 61 Cygni! or “one million two hundred thousand billions” of miles from this earth of ours.
And this preposterous figure is the outward and visible sign of the nature of the science that has been evolved in twenty centuries through the failure of astronomers to perceive the error of Hipparchus.
” So Mr. Hickson has his own view of the universe – a stationary earth with stars rotating around it – and when the astronomers deign to answer him publicly he will confute them utterly.Then will his weather forecasts receive the respect that is their due and he will confer blessings on mankind and gain profit himself.Meanwhile the police have stopped his street lectures, and he can do nothing but hang out his challenge until some one takes it up.” LONDON, special to NY Times, March 4, 1921
Since then no books on a geocentric, a flat earth round Earth has been published until Eric Dubay published the “Flat Earth Conspiracy” in 2014. I highly encourage everyone to get this most important book to understand, and help end, 500 years of one massive Lie.
It is also important to understand how the Greatest Lie in 500 years was initiated by the Vatican when books first began to be published to the Commoner and has been perpetuated by the Royal Society of Astronomer’s in London, to Einstein, to NASA. This will be covered in a subsequent post.
Please also review the “Very Brief Heliocentric History Timeline”
And Sir Isaac Newton’s 500 year Lie
This is a new Age of Discovery to go within deeply and fully to understand the history mechanics that has perpetrated and entire population for well over 250 years and continues to this day. Tag your it.