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In 1659, Christiaan Huygens using a more powerful telescope realized what was really being seen, and soon after discovered the planet’s first moon, Titan.
In 1671, Giovanni Cassini found four more moons (Iapetus, Rhea, Tethys, Dione), as well as a space between the planet’s A and B rings, known today as the Cassini Division.
In ancient times, astronomers were able to distinguish between those stars which seemed to maintain a fixed position relative to one another, and the so-called wandering stars which changed their positions in the sky slightly each night.
It was also noticed that these ‘planetes’ did not twinkle like other stars, varied in brightness throughout the year, and appeared to move along the same path traveled by the Sun and Moon called the ecliptic.
That said, each of the planets has its own interesting discovery story, so let’s take a look at them: Diameter: 3,031 miles Orbit: 29-43 million miles One Year: 88 Earth days Mercury is visible to the naked eye and has been known to ancient people for millenia, with one of its earliest recordings found in a Babylonian star catalogue called the Mul. Mercury was first seen through a telescope by Galileo in 1631, although his instrument was too small to observe its phases.