Ferguson's ecliptic diagram, 1756

Ferguson's ecliptic diagram, 1756

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Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Ferguson's ecliptic diagram. This diagram was published in 1756 by the Scottish astronomer and instrument maker James Ferguson (1710-1776), in his book Astronomy explained upon Sir Isaac Newton's Principles. Figure I (across bottom) shows the Earth and Moon (far left) relative to the Sun (far right). Figure II is an Earth globe (lower centre) marked with lines, including the tropic of Capricorn and the Parallel of London. Figure III (left) shows how the Earth's axial tilt leads to seasons. Figures IIII and V (right) show the Earth-Sun system in circular and ecliptic models, with the Sun passing through the twelves signs of the zodiac during the year.

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