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Perelandra Chap. 2

An archived study of the second book of Lewis' theological science fiction Space Trilogy.

Re: A Cult Classic

Postby Guest » 31 Oct 2004, 14:46

Steve wrote:
- the idea of a planet that has a perpetual night side - I'm sure I've come across this in other modern sci-fi, don't suppose anyone knows where?


For a long time, astronomers believed that Mercury always kept the same face to the sun, and there have been science fiction stories about exploring Mercury.

And then in recent years a different period of rotation for Mercury was discovered.



It would seem to me that the idea would come from the fact that one side of the moon always faces that which it is orbiting, so why couldn't a planet do the same thing... not a very original idea, albeit fun to work with in sci-fi.
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Re: Perelandra Chap. 2

Postby Stanley Anderson » 31 Oct 2004, 14:54

I just wanted to add in one more observation that I forgot about. I notice that Ransom's mentioning often after his return that Lewis and the doctor looked ill and wondered if they were ok was similar in nature to the scene in OSP where Ranom sees Weston and Devine again after a long time and sees them through "Malacandrian" eyes as being short and squat. This time, having lived on Perelandra's unfallen, health inducing surface, the earthlings look to him pale and sickly. This again is that change in point of view that Lewis incorporates so often in these books (and in all his books really).

--Stanley
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Re: Perelandra Chap. 2

Postby Ebbingkneeser » 18 Jan 2005, 13:52

Kanakaberaka wrote:Synopsis - This chapter covers a huge area : The begining and the Terrestrial conclusion of Ransom's voyage to the planet Venus, or Perelandra as it is known by others in the Field of Arbol.
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Ransom mentions Italian astronomer Giovanni Schiaparelli's theory that one side of Venus always faces the Sun. Interestingly, it was Schiaparelli who observed channels or "canali" as they are called in Italian on the surface of Mars. English speakers misinterpreted canali as canals, suggesting an intellegent design to their construction. So Lewis has borrowed at least two ideas of Schiaparelli for his space trilogy. But Lewis goes back to Jacques Cassini for advice on the length of the Venusian day. Cassini, who lived from 1677 to 1756, estimated a daily rotation period of 23 hours 15 minutes for Venus. In reality the true rotation period for Venus was only discoverd in 1962, well after the publication of Perelandra, by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory USA. They used radar to determine that Venus has a Rotation period of 243.0 days. But it only takes 224.7 days for Venus to orbit the Sun! This makes one Venusian day equal to 116 Terrestrial days.


I know it has been almost 3 months since anyone posted on this thread, but this point caught my eye. It looks like Schiaparelli was close to being right. If the periods of rotation and revolution of venus were exactly the same (as the moon's are) then the same side of venus would always face the sun. It looks like a venusian year is shorter than a venusian day! I am curious as to what formula is used to calculate one venusian day in terrestrial day units.
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What a difference a Venusian day makes

Postby Kanakaberaka » 18 Jan 2005, 15:02

Ebbingkneeser wrote:I know it has been almost 3 months since anyone posted on this thread, but this point caught my eye. It looks like Schiaparelli was close to being right. If the periods of rotation and revolution of venus were exactly the same (as the moon's are) then the same side of venus would always face the sun. It looks like a venusian year is shorter than a venusian day! I am curious as to what formula is used to calculate one venusian day in terrestrial day units.

Feel free to add to this study any time you like, "Ebb". It sounds to me like you are correct about the length of the real Venusian day. In fact I tried incorporating the Earth month's long Venusian year into one of my own adventure stories. It was a sort of pulp fiction type story with geneticly engineered dinosaurs populating the planet. Quite a stretch from C.S. Lewis' theological allegory. Although I did include a few gratuitous passing references to Perelandra in it
so it goes...
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