Saturday, November 14, 2015

Space1 History of Lunar Mapping - Keep it Secret or Die

Leonardo 1500
keep it secret or die...

Few Moon maps were published around the time of the invention of the telescope. There's a reason for this.

Even the invention of the telescope was kept secret for many years. Davinci apparently invented one and created lunar drawings, according to his notes from the year 1500, which is 109 years before Galileo's telescope.

It's now known that many drawings were made but few survived. The maps typically were kept in the author's hidden scrap books of lunar depictions and for good reason.
Thomas Harriot July 26, 1609
If you talked about what you had seen, published results, or made drawings known, you would be executed, usually hung on a cross and tortured there for so called heresy by the church.

This is a small chronological collection of the earliest surviving historical lunar maps, dates, and the names of the brave authors and inventors.

Thomas Harriot 1612 or 1613
Leonardo, in his unpublished notes at that time, invented a telescope in 1500. He kept his notes secret to avoid being hung and killed by the church.

109 years later, Galileo announced his telescope results and was almost killed, escaping to exile and ending up in house arrest for the rest of his life.

"Several lunar features are quite recognizable in this engraving, the second in the series, based on a sketch made on December 3, 1609. The mountains east of Mare Imbrium (Sea of Rains) form the ring at the top, and the sizable crater at the bottom is probably Albategnius, here quite a bit larger than life, and undoubtedly conveying by its grandeur the impression it made on Galileo's mind." Source
In 1609, Astronomer Thomas Harriot may have drawn maps of the Moon before Galileo published his drawings.

"The modern face of the moon first emerged in the early evening of November 30, 1609, when Galileo Galilei in Padua turned his telescope toward the moon, noted the irregularities of the crescent face, and made a drawing to record his discoveries. He made at least five more drawings of the moon over the next eighteen days, prepared careful watercolor sketches from these drawings, and then selected four of these to be engraved for his revolutionary Starry Messenger, which appeared the following March. Galileo's treatise announced to an astonished public that the moon was a cratered chunk of elements --a world -- and not some globe of quintessential perfection. It was a new land, to be explored, charted, and named. The science of selenography was born."
Galileo 1610, wood carvings were "redrawn" inverted and flipped in orientation, different from Galileo's drawings.
Galileo 1610 - In this depiction, Galileo's original depiction is compared to a lunar photo.
His first is a Lunar drawing, possibly the first recorded observation using a telescope, dated 26 July 1609. 

The second refined depiction is thought to be his composite drawing of the Moon dating 1612 or 1613, and is considered by some experts to mark the birth of modern cartography.

Harriot's drawings predated Galileo's famous drawings by six months. But Harriot kept himself secret.

Galileo apparently did not date his drawings. However, the publication Siderius Nuncius published in 1610 shows Galileo’s initial sketches of the Moon.
Hevelius map of the Moon in 1647
Large Map of the Moon by Giovanni Cassini 1679