Chapter 30 — Halley's comet: the Great Deceiver

Chapter 30: Halley's comet - the Great Deceiver

30.1 A Copernican comedy of errors

Astronomers have been obsessed with comets for centuries, but have strangely enough never reached any rational or definitive conclusion regarding their orbital motions. For example, Halley’s comet, the most well-known comet among the general public, has given rise to endless controversy due to its allegedly unpredictable behavior. Each time around, this little joker has played peekaboo with earthly observers, showing its face only during relatively brief, intermittent time windows, when it is not hidden from view behind or in front of the Sun. The introduction of the Copernican heliocentric model has only made things worse, leaving scientists utterly befuddled. Still, the discovery of a new comet is perhaps the most prestigious feather in any amateur or professional astronomer’s hat.

”The return of Halley's comet suddenly made comets the headliners of astronomy, and for several decades it seemed that the greatest feat any astronomer could achieve was to discover comets.” “Halley’s comet” – the Free library (opens in a new tab)

Fig. 30.1

Few people will be aware that Halley’s comet, with its supposedly wildly irregular or ‘chaotic’ orbital period, is one of the greatest oddities in astronomy. Paradoxically, in spite of our astronomers’ unsuccessful attempts to explain its behavior, we are told it provided the ultimate proof of Sir Isaac Newton’s theories. Indeed, when Halley’s comet passed in 1758, as predicted by Newton’s mentor, Edmond Halley, it was celebrated as the greatest triumph of Newton’s gravitational ‘laws’:

“Its discovery was hailed as a triumph of scientific reasoning and Newtonian physics. By its appearance at this time, the truth of the Newtonian Theory of the Solar System is demonstrated to the conviction of the whole world, and the credit of the astronomers is fully established and raised far above all the wit and sneers of ignorant men.” "A Brief History of Halley’s comet” - (opens in a new tab)

In hindsight, as will be thoroughly demonstrated in this chapter, those “sneers of ignorant men” were quite rightful and well-founded: the many hypotheses set forth to account for the observed behavior of Halley’s comet soon turned into a bewildering hodge-podge of assumptions and complex numerical integrations. Indeed, current cometary theory is riddled with aberrations, the most glaring of which is the claim that Halley’s periodicity can fluctuate by as many as 6 years, unlike any other celestial body in our system: according to modern astronomy tables, the interval between the passages of the comet can be anywhere between 73 years and 79 years. Oddly enough, these minimum and maximum values are rarely mentioned in today’s textbooks, most of which tell us that Halley’s comet returns “every 75 or 76 years or so” (as was more correctly reckoned in the 17th century). As we shall see further on, the TYCHOS model allows us to affirm that Halley’s comet has a quite regular and definitely ‘non-chaotic’ mean orbital period of 75.7 years.

As shown in Figure 30.2, Halleys’ comet is currently believed to travel around the Solar System in a highly elongated, almost cigar-shaped orbit. Moreover, as it recedes from Earth, its speed is thought to gradually decrease until it reaches the orbit of Neptune where, for some reason, it reverses course and initiates its return trip to the Sun. Upon returning, it is said to accelerate markedly and make a sharp U-turn around our system, curiously enough always passing much closer to Earth than to the Sun. Indeed, one has to wonder how Newton’s gravitational theories would account for this fact: does the Earth exert a stronger ‘gravitational pull’ upon the comet than the Sun?

Fig. 30.2 Illustration from Isaac Asimov’s “Guide to Halley’s Comet” (1985).

The European Space Agency (ESA) makes no bones about the vital role comets played in the development and confirmation of Newton’s theorems:

Testing gravity: how comets helped to prove Newton right. In the seventeenth century, science was thriving across Europe. The concept of a heliocentric Solar System was slowly spreading, bringing with it a reignited curiosity for astronomy and a lessened fear of previously mysterious celestial objects, such as comets. Cometary science was to take many great steps forward in the coming centuries - but first, comets had a vital part to play in developing one of the most fundamental theories in all of physics: Newton's law of universal gravitation.” “Testing Gravity: How Comets Hepled to Prove Newton Right” - ESA website (opens in a new tab)

The astronomy literature is awash with such boastful and celebratory statements, yet the titanic efforts deployed over the years to justify comet Halley’s apparently irregular periods have been based on a veritable comedy of errors. A host of exotic ad hoc theories have been dreamed up by the scientific community in what reads like a cheap, yet exhilarating, science fiction novel. As we have seen, according to one extravagant hypothesis, Halley’s comet would somehow be drastically slowed down or sped up by ‘perturbating gravitational forces’ as it transits in the vicinity of Uranus, Saturn, Jupiter or Venus. We are asked to accept this as the explanation for why the official orbital period of Halley’s comet fluctuates by as much as ±3 years, corresponding to a whopping 8% of its mean period of 75.7 years. Over time, an array of assorted and purely speculative ‘non-gravitational effects’ were added to those ghostly ‘perturbations’ to make the equations work, since Newtonian physics per se was insufficient to predict the comet’s observed returns with any degree of precision.

“Our results show that the behaviour of the non-gravitational effects in the motion of Comet Halley with time is a very important problem which requires a careful investigation.” “Investigations of the long-term motion of Comet Halley: What is a cause of the discordance of results obtained by different authors?” (opens in a new tab) by Sitarski & Ziolkowski (1986)

The TYCHOS shows that, as Halley’s comet enters our Solar System, it passes quite close to Earth and may be seen telescopically on occasions stretching over two or three years, or even four successive years, provided conditions are favourable. As we shall see, this extensive transit period is at the root of the dire confusion surrounding its periodicity. It is indeed ironic that Halley’s comet, which is falsely claimed to have provided “vital and definitive proof of Newton’s law of universal gravitation”, is now providing conclusive evidence in support of the TYCHOS model.

Fig. 30.3 A full 75.7-year orbital period of Halley’s comet in the Tychosium simulator.

While reading this chapter, try running the Tychosium 3D simulator (opens in a new tab) on your laptop or desktop. Activate Halley’s comet by checking the “Halley” box in the “Planets” menu to get familiar with its celestial motions in the TYCHOS model. Select any date and verify the comet’s position. Then activate the “Trace” function for Halley’s comet and push the “Run” button to see how the comet moves in a circular (albeit trochoidal) orbit, like all the planets in the Solar System (as illustrated in Fig. 30.3).

Before proceeding, it is important to understand why Halley’s comet can be sighted more than once, during two or three successive years, as it transits across the Solar System. The screenshot from the Tychosium simulator in Figure 30.4 shows Halley’s comet passing in 1985 and in 1986. During its first close passage around June 1985, it was mostly swamped by the Sun’s glare, making it very difficult to observe. As we shall see later, though, it was briefly, yet unwittingly, spotted in May 1985 by Don Machholz, an expert amateur ‘comet hunter’. However, during its second close passage around April 1986, it was observed by many people in the southern hemisphere:

Fig. 30.4

Due to the comet’s inclined trochoidal orbit, it is seen ‘above’ the Earth the first time it passes and ‘below’ the Earth upon the second passage. Curiously, the Wikipedia entry for Halley’s comet features a diagram, reproduced in Figure 30.5, showing the comet passing close to Earth on 10 April 1986 (which it did) and then proceeding into the distance in trochoidal loops similar to those traced in the Tychosium simulator. Since the heliocentric model does not envision orbits as trochoidal loops, one wonders how the authors of that diagram arrived at such a ‘conceptual’ representation of Halley’s motions.

Fig. 30.5 “1986 passage of Halley’s comet” Wikipedia (opens in a new tab) ____ Fig. 30.6 1986 passage of Halley’s comet in the Tychosium.

Another most interesting aspect of Halley’s circular-trochoidal orbit is that the width of its loops are commensurate with the diameter of the Sun’s orbit (2 AU), as illustrated in Figure 30.7. This would support the hypothesis that Halley’s comet is simply an ejectum of the Sun which has preserved its original, solar orbital momentum, speed and dynamics. According to this view, all comets may be small ‘fireballs’ ejected from the Sun which then gradually cool off and fizzle out, much like Halley’s comet appears to be doing. This, of course, would require far more study to be confirmed.

Fig. 30.7 The width of comet Halley’s trochoidal loops is equal to the Sun’s orbital diameter (2AU)

The trochoidal path of Halley’s comet, as traced in the Tychosium simulator, provides clear and demonstrable answers to the dreadful, longstanding confusion around the comet’s periodicity. Needless to say, astronomers’ failure to realize the true motions of Halley’s comet can be ascribed to their obtuse adherence to heliocentrism: since they refuse to give up the unproven theory that the Earth races around the Sun, their complex computations attempting to plot and predict the comet’s trajectory across our system have been utterly fruitless. Moreover, opportunities to empirically observe Halley’s comet are few and far between. Keep in mind that each time the comet passes through our system it will only be visible intermittently—i.e., for relatively short periods of time— and, more often than not, its ever-diminishing gleam will be shrouded by the glare of the Sun.

Another remarkable aspect revealed by the Tychosium simulator is that Halley’s orbital speed is not only constant but also identical to that of the Sun (107226 km/h). This can be readily verified by counting the days the comet employs to traverse the PVP orbit’s diameter. Figure 30.8 is a screenshot from the Tychosium simulator showing that Halley’s comet and the Sun cover the exact same distance in 44 days (see Chapter 11).

Fig. 30.8 In this screenshot from the Tychosium simulator, the Sun and Halley’s comet are shown to cover the same distance in 44 days and thus to travel at the exact same speed (107226 km/h). This also corroborates the estimated diameter of the PVP orbit (113.2 Mkm), as expounded in Chapter 11. (Note: this ‘2D verification’ was performed in the Tychosium prior to applying the comet’s orbital inclination of 18° in relation to the Sun’s orbital plane).

30.2 The OFFICIAL roster versus the TYCHOS roster of Halley’s passages

The official roster of comet Halley’s periodic transits across the Solar System features single sightings only, but the roster generated with the TYCHOS model has double or triple sightings for each transit since the comet passes close to Earth (within 0.55 AU) in at least two successive years.

OFFICIAL ROSTER of Halley’s historical transits: 240 B.C./ 164 B.C./ 87 B.C./ 12 B.C./ 66 AD/ 141/ 218/ 295/ 374/ 451/ 530/ 607/ 684/ 760/ 837/ 912/ 989/ 1066/ 1145/ 1222/ 1301/ 1378/ 1456/ 1531/ 1607/ 1682/ 1759/ 1835/ 1910/ 1986/ 2061/ 2134 Source: "The Greatest Comets in History" - by David A.J. Seargent (2009) (opens in a new tab)

TYCHOS ROSTER of Halley’s historical transits: 210 & 209 BC / 135-134-133 BC * / 59 & 58 BC / 17 & 18 AD / 92-93-94 AD * / 168 & 169 AD / 244 & 245 AD / 319-320-321 AD * / 395 & 396 AD / 471 & 472 AD / 546-547-548 AD * / 622-623-624 AD * / 698 & 699 AD / 774 & 775 AD / 849-850-851 AD * / 925 & 926 AD / 1001 & 1002 AD / 1076-1077-1078 AD * / 1152 & 1153 AD / 1228 & 1229 AD / 1303-1304-1305 AD * / 1379 & 1380 AD / 1455 & 1456 AD / 1530-1531-1532 AD * / 1606-1607-1608 AD * / 1682 & 1683 AD / 1757-1758-1759 AD * / 1833-1834-1835 AD * / 1909 & 1910 AD / 1985 & 1986 AD / 2060-2061-2062 AD * / 2136 & 2137 AD**

  • = all 3 comet passages within a distance of 0.55 AU from the Earth

As an example of the inadequacy of the heliocentric model, note that the official roster’s interval between Halley’s transits in 2061 and 2134 is only ~73 years, while the interval given between the transits in 1222 and 1301 is ~79 years! Have astrophysicists ever provided any rational explanation for this massive 6-year variation in Halley’s orbital period? No.

In the TYCHOS roster, Halley’s transits occur at quite regular intervals of ~75.7 years. Moreover, as may be verified in the Tychosium simulator, Halley’s comet will return to very nearly the same place in our skies every 227 years (3 x ~75.7). This is very similar to the behaviour of our Moon which returns to virtually the ‘same place’ after 3 saros cycles, or 1 exeligmos cycle. We may therefore say that Halley’s 75.7-year and 227-year cycles are the equivalent of the Moon’s saros and exeligmos cycles (see Chapter 13). More remarkably still, Halley's comet has a long cycle of 984 years (i.e. 13 x ~75.7y) at both ends of which we may find it transiting closest to the Earth on the exact same calendar dates; now, our Moon also has a long cycle of 85609 days (i.e. 13 saros cycles) at both ends of which we may find it eclipsing the Sun! Needless to say, no astronomers have ever noticed these wondrous orbital resonances between our Moon and Halley’s comet.

One may well say that the TYCHOS model supports Newton’s fundamental claim that “physics work the same everywhere”. Newton himself, however, concluded that comets moved around highly elliptical, almost cigar-shaped orbits, completely unlike any other known type of celestial body. In the following section we shall try to understand why Sir Isaac reached such a bizarre and illogical conclusion, contradicting his own claim to universality. The fact that his cigar-shaped cometary orbits have been universally accepted ever since goes to show how the almost god-like status posthumously assigned to scientists like Newton and Einstein has blinded the scientific community for centuries, making otherwise capable researchers accept all sorts of self-contradictory edicts.

30.3 The ‘Great Comet of 1680’ (Newton’s comet)

Let it be clear, as we tackle this dreadfully ruinous episode of astronomical history, that no one has ever suggested to this day that the ‘Great Comet of 1680’ (also known as ‘Kirch’s comet’ (opens in a new tab) or‘Newton’s comet’) might have been a misidentified sighting of Halley’s comet. The general consensus is that this ‘one-off’ comet—observed until early 1681, never to return again—just happened to transit close to the Earth only a year or so prior to comet Halley’s 1682 passage, by pure chance.

The case of the ‘Great Comet of 1680’ has to be one of the most egregious examples of how a single spurious observation can lead astray the progress of astronomical knowledge and, indeed, the entire course of science. To be sure, the ‘Great Comet of 1680’ was the ‘founding stone’ upon which Isaac Newton and Edmond Halley erected their cometary theories which, in turn, were universally acclaimed as definitive confirmation of Newton’s ‘laws’ of gravitation.“Great Comet of 1680” (or 'Newton's comet') - Wikipedia (opens in a new tab)

"Newton’s Comet 1680-1681: The comet that was observed by skilled observers, astronomers for the first time in history. Newton's cometary theory is based on it. Also, it was the first comet that was discovered telescopically (by Gottfried Kirch and others). None of the more ancient Comets of which we have any record was so closely observed as this. It was observed by a large number of scientific people, and it was mainly from observations of this Comet, that Sir Isaac Newton, as set forth in great length in his "Principia" evolved his cometary theory. In Proposition XLI, Problem 21, "from three observations given to determine the orbit of a Comet moving in a parabola'' after giving his calculations and drawings, Newton says, "Let the Comet of the year 1680 be proposed." Newton's theories evolved from the observations of this Comet, made by Flamsteed, Halley and others, and lie at the foundation of all modern learning on the subject of Cometary orbits.” “Newton’s Comet 1680-1681” - Astrocoins (2015) (opens in a new tab)

A lengthy controversy between Newton and Flamsteed centered upon the nature of the successive sightings in 1680 and 1681 which were eventually—yet, as we shall see, erroneously—deemed to have been the same comet. It is a well-documented fact that Sir Isaac was, initially, profoundly perplexed (and rightly so) over the “extraordinary hairpin turn around the Sun” the comet must have made if Flamsteed’s single-comet theory was correct.

Fig. 30.9

"Through an intermediary he (Newton) also corresponded about it with John Flamsteed, the astronomer royal, who was convinced that the two appearances were not two comets but a single one which reversed its direction in the vicinity of the sun. He expounded the theory in terms of a fantastic magnetic dynamics, rejected by Newton, who also resisted the notion of a single comet." "Sir Isaac Newton" (opens in a new tab) by R.S. Westfall (2004)

But let us start from the beginning of this pivotal case of misidentification. On 14 November 1680, the German astronomer Gottfried Kirch saw an object in his telescope close to Mars at about 10h of RA, which was later interpreted as a comet. The object was a rather dull speck of light and Kirch first thought it might be some previously unobserved nebula because he never detected any tail behind it.

”Kirch noticed the comet first at Coburg, early on the morning of the 14th of November, 1680, and seems to have felt a natural pride at being the first to detect a comet with the assistance of a telescope before it had been seen with the naked eye. It was, at the time, not far from the planet Mars, and was just visible to the naked eye. At first, he doubted whether it was a new comet, or a nebula similar to that in the girdle of Andromeda; but its motion soon decided that it was the former.” “First discovery of the great comet of 1680” (opens in a new tab) by W.T. Lynn (1888)

In short, Kirch saw a faint, tailless body in proximity to Mars, moving prograde. Other observers such as Brattle and Foster reported seeing the same dull object in November 1680 and, only a month or so later, reported a far brighter object with a distinct tail in the opposite part of the firmament.

1680: "Morning comet, observed by Thomas Brattle and John Foster, disappears sometime in November, too close to the Sun to observe."

1681: "Evening comet appears, observed by Thomas Brattle and John Foster. By either genius or ignorance they conclude that this is the same comet as the one they just saw last year."

Source: The Harvard College Observatory (opens in a new tab)

In summary, the original tailless object reported by Kirch disappeared soon after being observed on 14 November 1680, and only one month later (on December 15) a large comet with a clearly visible tail made its spectacular appearance in the diametrically opposite quadrant of our skies, leading to the curious conclusion—after much controversy—that the two objects were one and the same comet. An unbiased researcher would look for alternative explanations for the November 1680 sighting, so let us consult the Tychosium simulator for enlightenment. As shown in Figure 30.10, precisely on 14 November 1680 the asteroid Eros was transiting close to Mars, as seen from Earth, and—believe it or not—the JPL/NASA simulator has both Eros and the ghostly ‘Great Comet of 1680’ transiting at the near-exact same place on this date!

Fig. 30.10 LEFT: location of asteroid Eros on 1680-11-14 according to the Tychosium / RIGHT: location of Eros and the “Great Comet of 1680” according to the JPL simulator.

Furthermore, the Tychosium simulator has Eros passing at 0.43 AU from Earth on 14 November 1680, whereas the Wikipedia has the ‘Great Comet of 1680’ (a.k.a ‘Newton’s Comet’) passing at 0.42 AU from Earth on 30 November 1680. As illustrated in Figure 30.10, the JPL simulator places Eros and ‘Newton’s comet’ in virtually the same celestial spot on 14 November 1680. Heliocentrists may wish to chalk this up to sheer coincidence, but evidently what Kirch and his colleagues saw in their telescopes in November 1680 was simply Eros, the existence of which was unknown to them, as it would only be discovered more than two centuries later (see Chapter 29).

Suddenly, in mid-December of 1680, a large comet with an impressive tail, reportedly “one of the brightest comets of the 17th century”, appeared on the opposite side of our planet. Considering the radically different aspects of the two objects observed, respectively in November and December, one can only wonder why no astronomer objected to the glaringly absurd claim that they were one and the same comet. In astronomy circles, it seems, consensus is not always the product of common sense. Anyhow, as of historical record, this blazing comet was observed to descend in our skies on 29 December 1680, just beneath the small Delphinus star cluster at about 22h of RA. In the Tychosium simulator, this is precisely the path and location of Halley’s comet on 29 December 1680.

Fig. 30.11 The Tychosium shows that the so-called “Great Comet of 1680” was none other than Halley’s comet.

"Comet Kirch" (a.k.a. "the Great 1680 comet” or "Newton's comet") as depicted in the Stellarium simulator on December 29, 1680 (opens in a new tab)

Interestingly, a commemorative medal of the ‘Great Comet of 1680’ was minted back then, as shown in Figure 30.11 (bottom left). The medal depicts the actual location of the comet, just below the Delphinus cluster. A 2012 study by Robert McIvor argues convincingly that the anonymous designer of this medal had to be an accomplished and rigorous astronomer to have correctly placed the comet in the portion of the sky where it was actually observed Source: “Was this 1681 Medal a Lucky Charm or a Star Map?” (opens in a new tab) by Robert S. McIvor (2012)

The following may be affirmed about what came to be known as ‘Newton’s comet’:

• On 14 November 1680, a dull and tailless object was sighted by Kirch as close as 0.42 AU from Earth. Despite its uncometlike appearance, it was eventually labeled the ‘Great Comet of 1680’. In reality, the object Kirch saw near Mars was in all likelihood the then uncatalogued near-Earth asteroid, Eros.

• A month or so later, in late December 1680, a bright, long-tailed comet appeared on the opposite side of the firmament on a descending path beneath the Delphinus cluster at about 22h of RA. This is exactly where the Tychosium simulator shows Halley’s comet at the end of December 1680. Astoundingly, this splendid comet was deemed to be a second sighting of the same dull and tailless object observed by Kirch on 14 November 1680.

• There never was a ‘Great Comet of 1680’, described in the Wikipedia as “one of the brightest comets of the seventeenth century”. These late 1680 / early 1681 cometary sightings were simply the first appearances of Halley’s comet as it approached Earth prior to its famous 1682 passage. As will be illustrated later on, it was then observed again in 1683.

Thusly, and ironically enough, it was a misidentified passage of Halley’s comet (mislabeled as the ‘Great Comet of 1680’) that led Sir Isaac Newton to mathematically formulate the notion of cigar-shaped, parabolic cometary orbits. Until then, most astronomers (including Kepler) thought comets moved in straight lines, passing through the Solar System only once, never to return again. Other astronomers thought comets came in pairs, moving in opposite directions. Knowing what we do about trochoidal trajectories, it is easy to understand why they had this impression. In fact, in a famous controversy with Flamsteed, Newton himself initially argued that the ‘comet of 1680’ and the ‘comet of 1681’ were two separate comets. Here is a brief summary of Flamsteed’s position on the matter:

”In 1680, The Royal Astronomer, John Flamsteed, gathered observational data about a massive comet that passed Earth. At this time, astronomers thought that comets came in pairs: to the general observer, it appeared as though one comet would go past the earth and get lost in the sun, and then another would arrive from the opposite direction. John Flamsteed made extremely accurate observations of this new comet in 1680, and he became convinced that there was only one comet, not a pair of comets. Moreover, he thought that the comet did not move in a circular pattern, but rather, in an ellipse. However, Flamsteed incorrectly believed that the comet only approached the sun and was forcibly repelled by its cosmic rays, which sent it careening back the way it came. He did not think that it traveled around the sun.” “John Flamsteed, Isaac Newton, and the Comet of 1680” - Obscure Histories website (opens in a new tab)

In conclusion, Newton’s mind was misled by a single spurious astronomical observation: the report of the sighting of Eros in November 1680. It is hard to overstate the import and dire consequences of this discombobulated episode of science history, from which arose the idea of cigar-shaped cometary paths and their tight ‘U-turns’ around the Sun. Yet, the blunder of mixing up an asteroid with a comet effectively elevated Isaac Newton to the condition of invincible ‘science hero’. Today, questioning his sacrosanct treatise, “Principia Mathematica”, which contains a huge fold-out diagram of his imagined trajectory of the ‘Great Comet of 1680’, is tantamount to heresy. In his irreverent book “Quirky Sides of Scientists”(2007), David Topper recounts this episode of ‘Newtonian hesitance’ in a chapter titled “A Change of Mind: Newton and the Comet(s?) of 1680 and 1681”. “A Change of Mind: Newton and the Comet(s?) of 1680 and 1681” (opens in a new tab) by David Topper

30.4 The bizarre reports of comet Halley’s 1759 return

Two very odd circumstances, one in Germany and one in France, surround the all-important return of Halley’s Comet in 1759, a famous event that came to be hailed as the glorious triumph of Edmond Halley’s and Isaac Newton’s theories and predictions.

ODD CIRCUMSTANCE #1: In Germany, a wealthy potato farmer and amateur astronomer named Georg Palitzsch is said to have been the first to observe the returning comet, on 25 December 1758. Strangely enough, the official Dresden document announcing the sighting made no mention that it was, in fact, the comet predicted by Edmond Halley. Today, the TYCHOS model sheds light on the reasons for this unpardonable omittance: Palitzsch had observed the long-awaited comet approaching from the ‘wrong’ side in relation to what astronomers were expecting! Here is a brief overview of the events, as penned by Gary A. Becker:

“What was indeed remarkable about his find was that Palitzsch had succeeded in winning the competition against some of the best professional astronomers in Europe, who were also searching for the comet, and who were much better equipped to recover it first. To their embarrassment, Palitzsch’s discovery came four weeks prior to the next independent sighting, which was made by the great French astronomer and comet seeker, Charles Messier (1730-1817). Messier sighted the comet on January 21, 1759. He had been jealously anticipating that he would win the competition to see it first, and rightfully so, for his search had been in progress for about 18 months. The first published announcement of Palitzsch’s find occurred the day before Messier independently saw the comet. Hofmann wrote an article which appeared in the second part of the Dresden Scholarly Announcement of 1759 under the title, “Report of the Comet which has been seen since the 25th of December.” Curiously enough, the document made no claim that this was the comet predicted by Halley over one-half century earlier. (...) Already European astronomers had been fooled twice in announcing that Dr. Halley’s comet had returned. One of these visitors was observed in the fall of 1757, while the other was seen just a few months earlier during the summer of 1758.” “The Christmas Comet of Johann Palitzsch” (opens in a new tab) by Gary A. Becker

ODD CIRCUMSTANCE #2: In France, an even stranger episode took place: the young Charles Messier ‘rediscovered’ Halley’s comet in his telescope on 21 January 1759 (almost four weeks after Palitzsch) and promptly shared his finding with his allegedly ill-tempered old boss, Joseph-Nicolas Delisle. Inexplicably, Delisle ordered Messier to keep it a secret! In fact, Delisle announced the arrival of Halley’s comet only on April 1st, for reasons that shall soon become clear.

"Charles Messier (1730-1817) rediscovered the comet on 21 January 1759 and followed it until 5 February, where it came too close to the Sun to remain observable. But Messier was only the assistant of Joseph-Nicolas Delisle (1688-1768). Delisle, who wanted to be the first to report the discovery to the Academy of Sciences, imposed the secret to Messier. The other Parisian astronomers, for their part, feared the wrath of Delisle, who had a bad temper, and did not attempt to find the comet. However, on April 1, Delisle and La Caille received a letter from Germany announcing the rediscovery of the comet by Palitzsch. Disaster! Unless completely losing face, it was no longer possible to keep the secret: Messier announced to several members of the Academy that he had seen the comet on 21 January and had also just seen it again that very night. He traced the route of the comet on a large map that he and Delisle presented to the king. The official announcement of the rediscovery by the Academy of Sciences took place only on April 25. This was very late; the comet was now very bright and easily seen.” “Halley’s, the first periodic comet” - Comets: from myths to reality (opens in a new tab)

Charles Messier was nicknamed “the comet ferret” due to his legendary obsession with discovering new comets and asteroids. Figure 30.12 reproduces a relevant extract from “David Levy’s Guide to Observing and Discovering Comets”.

Fig. 30.12 Extract from David Levy’s “Guide to Observing and Discovering Comets” (2003) (opens in a new tab)

These puzzling yet well-documented events above raise at least three pertinent questions:

A: Today Palitzsch is recognized as the man who first witnessed the return Halley’s comet in 1758. Why wasn’t his sighting of 25 December 1758 initially announced as Halley’s comet?

B: Why did Delisle order his assistant, Messier, to keep quiet about his 21 January 1759 sighting?

C: Why did the Academy of Sciences wait until 25 April 1759 to announce Halley’s approach?

With the help of the Tychosium simulator, we shall now attempt to answer these questions, with a descriptive graphic (Fig. 30.13) featuring a chronological reconstruction of the events of 1758/1759.

Fig. 30.13 The strange case of comet Halley’s 1759 passage, illustrated with the Tychosium simulator

A: Palitzsch’s sightings of December 1758 were initially questioned either because he failed to report the positional data (ephemerides) or because his data were deemed to be in error by the scholars in Dresden. In December 1758, Halley’s comet was not only transiting on the ‘wrong’ side of the firmament but was also—Heaven forbid!—moving prograde. Officially, Halley’s comet is thought to only ever move retrograde, that is, in the opposite direction of our surrounding planets.

B: Delisle reportedly witnessed his assistant’s discovery in the telescope around 21 January 1759. He must have been shocked to see the comet moving prograde and so ordered Messier to keep quiet about the sighting for the moment. However, we know that Deslisle announced the comet’s arrival on 1 April 1759. Consulting the Tychosium simulator, it turns out that Halley’s comet reversed direction, as viewed from Earth, only two days earlier, on 30 March 1759. I leave it up to the reader to draw the conclusion.

C: The Academy of Sciences happily announced to the world the passage of Halley’s comet on 25 April 1759, long after it had reversed direction and was now moving retrograde. The Copernican model and Newton’s theorems were thus salvaged, along with the status and credibility of the world’s scientific community. Phew!

Why, you may ask, was Messier, the man hailed as the greatest comet finder of all times, beaten to the punch by the German potato farmer and amateur astronomer, even though he spent 18 months feverishly scouring the skies for comet Halley’s all-important 1758 return? Well, according to the Italian Wikipedia, he was using the wrong chart:

“Messier showed great will on that occasion, spending the nights of nearly 18 months at the top of the observatory tower looking for the comet in an area of the sky where it could not be (his chart was simply wrong).” "Charles Messier" - Wikipedia (opens in a new tab)

In other words, the great astronomer and celebrated ‘comet ferret’, Charles Messier, spent 18 months looking for Halley’s return in the wrong part of the night sky! This major blunder by a legendary comet hunter is a good example of how Copernican astronomers have been helplessly confounded with regard to the kinematics of cometary motions due to their dogmatic attachment to heliocentrism.

Have there been other instances of comet sightings a year or two ahead of or after Halley’s ‘official’ transits? And if so, can it be demonstrated that these ‘untimely’ appearances were, in fact, Halley’s comet? The answer to these two questions is yes, absolutely. I like to call them ‘coincidental comets’ and, as we shall see, all of the last ten passages of Halley’s comet have been preceded or succeeded by sightings of supposedly unrelated comets. Of course, the odds of unrelated comets unfailingly appearing around each and every visit of Halley’s comet are, if you will pardon the pun, simply astronomical.

30.5 The ‘coincidental comets’ surrounding each of comet Halley’s returns

Astronomy almanachs contain scores of observational reports of comets that happened to pass close to the Earth one or two years prior to or after the predicted return of Halley’s comet. The sightings of these ‘coincidental comets’ have been systematically dissociated with Halley’s comet for one or more of the following reasons:

• They were sighted in parts of the sky incompatible with the prevailing theory of its motions.

• They implied an ‘unacceptable’ prograde direction of its orbital path.

• They did not occur close enough to its computed / expected dates.

• Multiple returns of the comet in adjacent years were deemed impossible.

Consequently, all these historical ‘coincidental comets’ were classified as ‘non-periodic’ (allegedly passing only once, never to return) and baptized with a variety of names:

  • The Great Comet of 1680 (also called ‘Newton’s comet’)

  • Dunlop’s comet

  • Gambart’s comet

  • Boguslawski’s comet

  • The Great January Comet of 1910

  • Machholz’s comet

...and (as we now shall see) several others.

As we go along, it should gradually become evident that each and every one of these ‘coincidental comets’ were, in actuality and in all logic, none other than Halley’s comet.

30.5.1 Halley’s 1682 passage

Let us begin with the ‘coincidental comets’ surrounding the officially sanctioned passage of Halley’s comet in 1682. The astronomy literature reports a number of other cometary sightings between 1680 and 1683, supposedly unrelated to comet Halley.

Fig. 30.14 The caption of this drawing published at the Universe Today website reads:“The illustration shows a view of Augsburg, Germany with the comets of 1680, 1682 (Halley’s Comet), and 1683 in the sky. Credit: NASA/JPL.” Source: “What is Halley's Comet?” - Universe Today (opens in a new tab)

As we saw above, the first sighting occurred on 14 November 1680 (the ‘Great Comet of 1680’, also called ‘Newton’s Comet’), but the tailless object observed was in actuality asteroid Eros. On 29 December 1680 it was seen descending beneath the Delphinus cluster at about 22h of RA. According to the history books, it was last observed by Sir Isaac Newton on 19 March 1681 (opens in a new tab). Another sighting of the comet was subsequently reported by Robert Hooke on 20 August 1682 (opens in a new tab) as it passed at about 0.42 AU from Earth; this one was officially—and correctly so—later deemed to have been Halley’s comet (the Tychosium has it transiting at ~0.4 AU on that date). Finally, around 13 July 1683 (or in any case, “in the summer of 1683”, as stated at the Royal Society’s website) Hooke reported seeing ‘yet another’—non-identified—comet. The Tychosium simulator can show how all of the ‘coincidental comets’ of 1680, 1681 and 1683 were nothing but misidentified sightings of Halley’s comet itself (or of asteroid Eros, in November 1680, an object unknown at the time).

Fig. 30.15 Halley’s path between 1680 and 1683. Note that at positions "C" and "E", Halley's comet would have been swamped in the glare of sunlight. Hence, there exist no reports of sightings at or near those dates.

Edmond Halley’s own celestial map and crucial observations of ‘his comet’, covering the period from 26 August to 9 September 1682, can be found in the archives (opens in a new tab). As can be easily verified by perusing the Tychosium 3D simulator, the TYCHOS model’s proposed 1682 trajectory of Halley’s comet is in excellent agreement with the historical data.

30.5.2 Halley’s 1759 passage

As discussed above, the notoriously controversial passage of Halley’s comet occurred in 1759. As usual, we may find ‘coincidental comets’ reported in the astronomy literature, this time in the two preceding years, in mid-September 1757 and mid-August 1758. Both sightings were, however, promptly dismissed by establishment astronomers as unrelated to Halley’s comet:

Fig. 30.16 In the two years preceding the officially sanctioned 1759 passage of Halley’s comet, two “non-identified” comets were observed in mid-September 1757 and mid-August 1758. Source: “Cometography – A Catalog of Comets”, by Kronk, Marsden, Meyer, Allan and Seargent (1999).

However, as shown by the Tychosium simulator, Halley's comet would have been within the Sun's orbit and visible from the Earth in mid-1757 and mid-1758. Messier and his fellow comet hunters were therefore entirely justified in believing that they had detected the approaching Halley's comet in the two years preceding its closest passage in April 1759:

Fig. 30.17 Successive positions of Halley’s comet in 1757, 1758 and 1759

Note that the Tychosium simulator has Halley’s comet passing closest to Earth on 26 April 1759, at 0.1225 AU and that the “Atlas of Great Comets” also has it passing closest to Earth on 26 April 1759, at 0.1225 AU.

The attentive reader will sense where this is going. The coincidences are already piling up, with much more to come, but let us proceed one step at a time. Thus, two ‘untimely’ comets were observed in 1834 and in 1833, only one and two years before Halley’s officially sanctioned 1835 passage. For those who wish further details, the cometary sightings of 1833 and 1834 are described in a French paper titled "Sur les orbites des deux comètes de 1833 et 1834" (opens in a new tab) by L. Schulhof (1889)

According to the Tychosium simulator, Halley’s comet made three successive perigee passages quite close to the Earth: 25 August 1833 (0.27 AU), 11 June 1834 (0.39 AU) and 11 April 1835 (0.44 AU). Each one was observed slightly later than the actual perigee dates, yet not one of them was recognized as Halley’s comet. In fact, they are now known as ‘Dunlop’s comet’ (1833), ‘Gambart’s comet’ (1834) and ‘Boguslawski’s comet’ (1835). The following analysis will show that, once more, we are dealing with misidentified sightings of Halley’s comet, needlessly rebaptized.

30.5.3 Dunlop’s comet of 1833

On 15 October 1833, ‘Dunlop’s comet’ (C/1833 S1 Dunlop) was observed to transit in our skies at approximately 17h of RA. (Source: “Observations of a Comet in 1833, and of another in 1834, observed at Paramatta by Mr. Dunlop” (opens in a new tab)). On this same date, the Tychosium simulator also has Halley’s comet transiting at approximately 17h of RA. Interestingly, the most spectacular meteor shower in recent memory took place on 12 November 1833, making some people wonder if it was a sign of the end of the world. Well, the Tychosium simulator shows Halley’s comet (or, if you will, ‘Dunlop’s comet’) making its closest passage to the Earth in late August 1833, moving roughly towards Leo as it swept across our skies. Conceivably, its trajectory put its long tail on collision course with the annual Leonid meteor shower, causing that exceptional and memorable meteoric spectacle. "The Horrifying Leonid Meteor Shower of 1833 That Made Some People Think The World Was Ending" (opens in a new tab) by Andrew Martin (2022)

30.5.4 Gambart’s comet of 1834

On March 10, 1834, ‘Gambart's comet’ (C/1834 E1 Gambart) was observed to be transiting in our skies at approximately 20h of RA (Source: "Cometography" - by Kronk, Meyer and Seargent (1999) (opens in a new tab)). On that same date, the Tychosium simulator has Halley’s comet transiting at approximately 21h of RA. Now, since both ‘Dunlop’s’ and ‘Gambart’s’ comets were observed to move in prograde direction (i.e., in the same direction as our planets), an early sighting of comet Halley was ruled out. However, the Tychosium simulator tells a different story: the three cometary sightings of 1833, 1834 and 1835 are perfectly consistent with Halley’s trochoidal trajectory. Unsurprisingly, ‘Dunlop’s’ and ‘Gambart’s’ comets are today classified in astronomy textbooks as ‘non-periodic’, meaning they have supposedly only been observed once and no one knows if they will ever return. There could be no easier way of disposing of ‘copernicidal’ observations.

30.5.5 Boguslawski’s comet of April 1835

According to official tables, Halley’s comet transited at perihelion (closest to the Sun) in November 1835. Yet, the astronomer Ludwik von Boguslawski had observed a comet in April 1835. He was actually awarded a ‘gold comet medal’ for it:

”Palm Heinrich Ludwik von Boguslawski, (1789-1851) was a Polish/German professor of astronomy and head of the observatory in Breslau. Boguslawski discovered a comet in April 1835 and calculated its course. For this he was awarded the first gold comet medal and the comet was named after him.“ Source: “Letter from Palm Heinrich Ludwik von Boguslawski” - Uppsala Universitet (opens in a new tab)

The Catalog of Comets (1800-1899) provides this precious description of the exact celestial positions of ‘Boguslawski’s comet’:

Fig. 30.18 Source: “Cometography, Volume 2 (1800-1899): A Catalog of Comets" - by Gary W. Kronk

→ On 21 April 1835 Boguslawski observed a comet transiting at 11h58min RA and -12°07′ DECL.

→ On 21 April 1835 the Tychosium has Halley’s comet at 11h50min RA and -12°56′ DECL.

→ ‘Boguslawski’s comet’ was calculated at the time to have passed closest to Earth on 11 April 1835.

→ In the Tychosium simulator, Halley’s comet transited closest to Earth precisely on 11 April 1835.

‘Boguslawski’s comet’ was never seen again. The reason should now be perfectly clear: it was, beyond all reasonable doubt, simply Halley’s comet appearing at the ‘wrong’ time and at the ‘wrong’ place. The screenshot in Figure 30.19 shows how the Copernican astronomers Dunlop, Gambart and Boguslawski were all deceived by Halley’s comet:

Fig. 30.19 The “Dunlop, Gambart and Boguslawski comets” were all none other than Halley’s comet

The French and British astronomers of the time were all expecting Halley’s comet to return in the month of November 1835—about 7 months after the sighting of ‘Boguslawski’s comet’ in April 1835. This prognostication had attained a reasonable level of consensus, but not without lengthy academic debates and intricate calculi involving gravitational and ‘non-gravitational’ perturbations believed to significantly alter the comet’s orbital speed. When Boguslawski reported the sighting of a large comet several months ahead of the official prediction, the scientific community was more than happy to name the ‘new’ comet after him. The same can be said of Dunlop’s and Gambart’s comets. Surely their calculations for Halley’s return could not possibly be in error by more than two years! Be that as it may, if the laws of probability count for anything, the Tychosium simulator provides highly compelling evidence that the three ‘coincidental comets’ were in fact Halley’s comet.

30.5.6 Halley’s 1910 passage

Halley’s 1910 passage also caused quite a stir. The newspapers of the time ran terror stories about how the Earth would be enveloped by the comet’s tail, which was thought to contain deadly hydrogen cyanide, leading to the extermination of mankind. A veritable worldwide panic ensued, similar in many ways to the modern pandemic scares instilled by the mainstream media corporations:

"In 1910, Halley’s Comet was due to pass close by Earth — and everyone from religious fanatics to news reporters stoked the fires of a global panic, believing it was the end of the world. [...] The scientific debate didn’t stop less scrupulous people from taking advantage of the situation. Suddenly, anti-comet pills flooded the market. One promised to serve as an elixir for escaping the wrath of the heavens. Gas masks became best-sellers and some even bought up “comet-protecting umbrellas.” The Story Of The Apocalyptic Frenzy Inspired By The Arrival Of Halley’s Comet In 1910 (opens in a new tab)

The 1910 transit of Halley’s comet was preceded by telescopic observations of its approach in 1908 and 1909. This time around, some astronomers actually made drawings of the comet’s observed path as it approached the Solar System. The graphic in Figure 30.20 compares their illustration of Halley’s approach in 1908 and 1909 to the trajectory traced by the Tychosium simulator.

Fig. 30.20 Insert from “The Popular Science Monthly”, January 1910 (opens in a new tab) compared to screenshot from the Tychosium.

The Tychosium has Halley’s comet passing between the Sun and the Earth at close distance (0.24 AU) on 19 May 1910, at about 4h of RA (in Taurus), in close agreement with its recorded position as documented in the astronomy annals. But, as usual, a ‘coincidental comet’ appeared a few months ahead of the expected passage of Halley’s comet.

30.5.7 The Great Daylight Comet of 1910

The so-called ‘Great Daylight Comet’ or ‘Great January Comet of 1910’ (C/1910 A1) was observed only for a brief period of time during the second half of January 1910. It appeared at around 19h of RA and -21° of DECL, a position wholly incompatible with the officially expected path of Halley’s comet. Despite the obvious similarity with Halley’s comet, having spotted it in the ‘wrong’ place and at the ‘wrong’ time, astronomers concluded it must be an entirely different object passing through our solar neighborhood by sheer coincidence:

"The Great January Comet of 1910, formally designated C/1910 A1 and often referred to as the Daylight Comet, was a comet which appeared in January 1910. It was already visible to the naked eye when it was first noticed, and many people independently "discovered" the comet. At its brightest, it outshone the planet Venus, and was possibly the brightest comet of the 20th century. The comet brightened rather suddenly, and was initially visible from the southern hemisphere only. A number of individuals claimed "discovery", but the comet is thought to have been first spotted by diamond miners in the Transvaal before dawn on January 12, 1910, by which time it was already a prominent naked-eye object of apparent magnitude −1." "Great January Comet of 1910" - Wikipedia (opens in a new tab)

"In 1910, the world awaited the return of the famous Comet Halley in May. However, the unexpected arrival of a bright comet in mid-January created much fear and awe. Deemed the Great Daylight Comet of 1910, it was bright enough to be seen during the day and at its peak, was brighter than Venus. It began to fade away in early February, followed a few months later by the arrival of the fainter, but still significant, Comet Halley. When Comet Halley returned in 1986, many of the older people around the world who recalled seeing it in 1910 had clearly described the Great Daylight Comet of 1910 and not Halley. In 1985 Jack Butler, a Jiwarli man from the Henry River in Western Australia, told of a “star with a tail in the east” he saw early in the year 1910 as a child. The comet caused fear among the elder men who “questioned what it was”. When the comet faded away, then men were confused and wondered where it had gone. According to Butler, the object he saw in 1910 was Comet Halley. However, the Great Daylight Comet of 1910 was prominent in the morning twilight, consistent with the “star with a tail in the east” visible early in the year. Therefore, it is probable that Butler was describing the Great Daylight Comet of 1910 rather than Comet Halley." "Comets in Australian Aboriginal Astronomy" - by Hamacher and Norris (opens in a new tab)

"Great January Comet of 1910. The first people to see this comet - then already at first magnitude - were workmen at the Transvaal Premier Diamond Mine in South Africa on Jan. 13, 1910. Two days later, three men at a railway station in nearby Kopjes casually watched the object for 20 minutes before sunrise, assuming that it was Halley's Comet. Later that morning, the editor of the local Johannesburg newspaper telephoned the Transvaal Observatory for a comment. The observatory's director, Robert Innes, must have initially thought this sighting was a mistake, since Halley's Comet was not in that part of the sky and nowhere near as conspicuous. Innes looked for the comet the following morning, but clouds thwarted his view. However, on the morning of Jan. 17, he and an assistant saw the comet, shining sedately on the horizon just above where the sun was about to rise. Later, at midday, Innes viewed it as a snowy-white object, brighter than Venus, several degrees from the sun. He sent out a telegram alerting the world to expect "Drake's Comet" - for so "Great Comet" sounded to the telegraph operator. It was visible during the daytime for a couple more days, then moved northward and away from the sun, becoming a stupendous object in the evening sky for the rest of January in the Northern Hemisphere. Ironically, many people in 1910 who thought they had seen Halley's Comet instead likely saw the Great January Comet that appeared about three months before Halley.” “The 9 most brilliant Comets ever seen” - (opens in a new tab)

Summarizing the information we have for this particular comet sighting:

• It was observed only for a couple of weeks, during the second part of January 1910, then faded out of sight, ‘never to return again’.

• It was quite low in our skies and was therefore only visible from locations in the southern hemisphere such as South Africa and Australia.

• It was seen to be gradually ascending in our skies and to move prograde. This, and the unexpected location in the sky, explains why astronomers promptly dismissed it as being Halley’s comet.

Fig. 30.21 Halley’s path between 12 January and 20 May 1910, according to the Tychosium simulator.

As shown, the Tychosium simulator has Halley’s comet passing in mid-January 1910 at ~19h of RA and -20° of DECL, very close to the celestial location described by the eye-witnesses of the ‘Great Daylight Comet’. For instance, Jack Butler in Australia would have seen Halley’s comet “in the east, in the morning twilight”. It then gradually rose up in the sky and, as reported, became a stupendous object in the evening sky for the rest of January in the northern hemisphere. And, in fact, the Tychosium simulator shows it ascending between January and May 1910, from about -20° to +20° of DECL. Clearly, due to their faulty understanding of cometary motions, heliocentric astronomers failed to realize that the ‘Great Daylight Comet’ and Halley’s comet were the same object becoming visible at different moments during its transit through our system. Note that, as Halley’s comet passed closest to Earth in May, it was transiting between the Earth and the Sun, on our ‘daylight side’. Drowned by the Sun’s glare, it was much less conspicuous in May than in January, if visible at all. So much so that the highly advertised and even dreaded passage in May turned out to be a great disappointment.

30.5.8 Machholz’s comet of 1985

The latest officially recognized passage of Halley’s comet around April 1986 was by all accounts a disappointment. The comet was barely visible to the naked eye and those who got a glimpse of it described it as a faint speck of light with a minuscule tail. Now, since the Tychosium simulator has Halley’s comet also passing close to Earth about ten months earlier, one would think some observational astronomer had seen it around this time. And sure enough, Donald Machholz, an accomplished ‘comet hunter’, reported seeing a comet approaching Earth in May 1985. In fact, the object he observed now bears his name: C/1985 K1 Machholz.

"Donald Edward Machholz, born October 7, 1952 in Portsmouth, Virginia, is an American amateur astronomer who is the leading visual comet discoverer, credited with the visual discovery of 12 comets that bear his name." "Donald Machholz" - Wikipedia (opens in a new tab)

For some odd reason, this particular comet (C/1985 K1 Machholz) discovered by Machholz is nowhere to be found on the English-language version of the Wikipedia. Luckily though, it can be found on the Italian version of the same, translated below:

"C/1985 K1 (Machholz) is a non-periodic comet discovered on 27 May 1985, the second comet discovered by US astrophile Donald Edward Machholz. According to the ephemeris, the comet was supposed to reach magnitude 4a to 5a between the end of June and the beginning of July 1985. In fact, the comet, which was very poorly positioned for observations as it was extremely close to the Sun, after being observed at 7.6a in the first half of June was no longer observed until four days before perihelion when it was observed in the infrared." "C/1985 K1 Machholz" - Wikipedia (opens in a new tab)

So let’s see: ‘Machholz’s comet of 1985’ eventually came extremely close to the Sun. It was expected to reach magnitude 4a to 5a (i.e., within naked-eye view, the threshold of which is around 6a), but this never happened. After being viewed telescopically at 7.6a in the first half of June, it disappeared from view and was only observed in the infrared spectrum a short while later. Note that ‘Machholz’s comet of 1985’ is classified as a ‘non-periodic’ comet, meaning it is not expected to return. So, was this just another ‘coincidental comet’ preceding Halley’s comet, against all reasonable odds, or was it another act in the comedy of errors of Copernican astronomy?

On 27 May 1985, Machholz saw the comet from a mountain called Loma Prieta, in California, using a home-made cardboard telescope. On that night, at about 4 am local time (13:00 UTC), he recorded the location as 0h49m of RA and +15°08′ of DECL. As shown in Figure 30.22, on that very same date and time, the Tychosium simulator has Halley’s comet transiting at 0h37m of RA and 15°09′ of DECL. Evidently, the comet ‘Machholz’ observed in 1985 was none other than Halley’s comet.

Fig. 30.22

So far, we have looked at comet Halley’s transits between 1682 and 1986 and shown that the officially sanctioned transits were all preceded or followed by ‘coincidental comets’. We will now go backwards in time, all the way to Antiquity, and investigate a number of documented passages of Halley’s comet.

30.5.9 Halley’s 1531 passage

Contemporary documents report the appearance of Halley’s comet around the year 1531, and a paper by Wolfgang Kokott, an extract of which is reproduced in Figure 30.23, mentions spectacular sightings in 1531, 1532 and 1533:

Fig. 30.23

Once again, the Tychosium shows that Halley’s did indeed make close approaches to Earth between 1531 and 1533:

Fig. 30.24

30.5.10 Halley’s 1456 passage

"There was no bright comet in 1455, but Halley did notice that one was observed in 1456, which he suspected was his comet, although he did not calculate its orbit. Actually, besides the one in 1456, there were two bright comets in 1457 and another in 1458, which somewhat confused the issue." Source: “Astronomical Enigmas" - by Mark Kidger (2005) (opens in a new tab)

In Figure 30.25, the Tychosium 3D simulator shows, once again, that Halley’s comet may well have been observed multiple times between 1456 and 1458:

Fig. 30.25

30.5.11 Halley’s 1380 passage

According to the official tables, Halley’s comet would have passed close to the Earth in 1378. However, it was reported in the catalogues of Alstédius and Lubienietski that “two comets had also been observed in 1379 and 1380”. Source: “A History of Halley’s Comet” - by Gustave De Pontécoulant (1835) (opens in a new tab)

Once again, the Tychosium simulator shows that Halley’s comet may well have been observed in 1378, 1379 and 1380:

Fig. 30.26 and 30.27

30.5.12 Halley’s 1305 passage

This one is a true oddball, since modern tables inexplicably now has Halley’s comet passing in 1301. It is a veritable mystery why this most spectacular 1305 passage reported in scores of contemporary writings has now been erased from the official Halley roster in favor of the year 1301, in spite of the fact that Edmond Halley himself used the well-documented 1305 passage for his famed calculations of the comet’s return. Moreover, dependable reports of a comet passing in 1301 are arguably absent from the astronomy literature. Instead, we have vague, popular conjectures that Italy’s famous painter Giotto “may have personally witnessed the comet in 1301” and that this would have inspired him to depict the comet as the star of Betlehem in his “Adoration of the Magi”, a painting completed in 1305!

Fig. 30.28 and 30.29

As it is, two ‘coincidental comets’ were actually observed in February 1304 and in January 1305, yet neither one was deemed to be Halley’s comet.

"The dating of Giotto's 'Adoration' is unfortunately not exact so while the bright comet of February 1304 seems to be the most probable we cannot rule out the comet that reached perihelion in January 1305" "Giotto's Comet - was it the Comet of 1304 and not Comet Halley?" (opens in a new tab) by David W, Hughes (1992)

In Fig. 30.30, the Tychosium 3D simulator shows, once again, that Halley’s comet did indeed make close approaches to Earth between 1304 and 1305. Much like in 1985/86, it was the second passage, in 1305, which was most visible from Earth, whereas the view of the comet was largely impeded by the Sun’s glare in 1304. Also note that 1305 AD and 1986 AD are separated by 681 years (3 x 227, or 9 x 75.7).

Fig. 30.30

We have now reviewed all 10 passages of comet Halley between 1305 and 1986 and shown that the Tychosium simulator is not only in excellent agreement with all, but can also determine that the many ‘coincidental comets’ observed a year or two before and after each officially sanctioned passage were none other than Halley’s comet itself. We have also shown that there is nothing random or irregular about Halley’s periodicity, which spans ~75.7 years. Using this stable and accurate periodicity provided by the Tychosium, we shall now boldly travel even further back in time and probe a number of fairly well-documented ancient records of cometary sightings against screenshots for the same dates.

30.5.13 Hipparchus’ new star of 134 BC

“In 134 B.C., Hipparchus noticed a star that he had never seen before in the constellation Scorpius. Unsure whether this was a new star or one that he simply hadn’t noticed, he began to compile the first star catalog, showing the positions of the stars in the sky.” Source: “The Ancient World” - (opens in a new tab)

Perhaps the best-known observational account by Hipparchus, considered the greatest astronomer of Antiquity, is this brief sighting of a ‘new star’. Incidentally, this is reminiscent of the sighting of a supernova by the young Tycho Brahe, an event which triggered his interest in astronomy. Now, while most popular astronomy texts, such as the Wikipedia, will tell you that what Hipparchus observed in Scorpius in 134 BC was a supernova, a number of researchers believe it was most likely a comet:

“According to Pliny, the appearance of a new star in 134 B.C inspired Hipparchus to compile a star catalogue, the earliest known, which gave the coordinates of more than 1,000 stars. The third-century historian Justin, however, makes it clear that the new “star” Hipparchus saw was actually a comet, a fact that is confirmed by Chinese annals for that year.” Source: “Historical Supernovas” (opens in a new tab) by F. Richard Stephenson and David H. Clark (1976)

The Chinese also observed a comet in 134 BC which they named “the Standard of Tch’e-yeou”:

”There can, I think, be little doubt that the Standard of Tch’e-yeou, appearing in 134 B.C., was identical with the new star observed by Hipparchus and begotten in his age, as recorded by Pliny. The record of the observation follows a series of cometary observations, and this alone renders it probable that the new star at least resembled a comet.” Source: “The new star of Hipparchus, and the dates of the birth and accession of Mithridates” (opens in a new tab) by J.K. Fotheringham (1918)

According to the Chinese annals, the 134 BC comet passed in June or July. Unfortunately, there seems to be no information in the astronomy literature regarding the month in which Hipparchus witnessed the appearance of the ‘new star’ in the Scorpius constellation.

30.5.14 Mithridates’ comet of 135 BC

History books report that a giant comet appeared in the sky around 135 BC at the birth of Mithridates (or Mithradates), the ‘king of kings’ who opposed the Roman Empire. Mithridates’ comet of 135 BC is said to have appeared in the constellation of Pegasus - and that it “lit up the sky for 70 days”. “135 B.C.: Giant comet stretched across the heavens at the birth of Mithradates; entire sky on fire” (opens in a new tab)

"Justin, in his c. 2nd-3rd century CE epitome, which was itself a summation of an earlier historical work by Pompeius Trogus dated sometime to the 1st century BCE, claims that Mithridates’ birth coincided with the passage of a comet through the sky which “lit up the sky for seventy days”. [...] Justin makes the only mention of such a phenomenon in the literary sources on Mithridates, and for years it was assumed that the story of the comet was just a legend. As Ramsey, however, has shown, astronomical records from the Han Empire in China have confirmed the passage of a comet through the sky for the period of c. 135 BCE and thus there may in fact be some factual basis behind Justin’s account." "The Characterisation of Mithridates VI in Appian’s Mithridateios" (opens in a new tab) by Daniel Hunter (2022)

Fig. 30.31 Source: “The Greatest Comets in History" - by David Seargent (opens in a new tab)

Take note of Seargent’s acute remark: “The chance of two such brilliant objects with unusually long tails appearing so close together in time seems too remote to be accepted without very good supporting evidence”. Further details about the birth and conception of Mithridates are provided by historian John T. Ramsey:

"The star appeared in the East, so brilliant that it seemed to rival the sun and set the night sky aflame. The luminous tail curved across a quarter of the heavens, as long as the Milky Way. The year was 135 BC. John T. Ramsey, a historian who studies ancient observations of celestial events, recently reexamined these independent Chinese observations of the comets to determine the years of Mithradates’ birth and the beginning of his reign. Ancient Greek and Latin sources are inconsistent about the chronology of this period; the only secure date is the year of Mithradates’ death in 63 BC. Ramsey’s comparison of the Roman and Chinese astronomical details indicates that Mithradates was probably born in the spring of 134 BC (conceived in summer or autumn of 135) and was crowned king in about 119, when he was fourteen or fifteen. At least two Roman sources agree with the birthdate of 135/134." "A Savior Is Born in a Castle by the Sea" - (opens in a new tab)

So, we know from several sources that Mithridates was conceived in the summer or autumn of 135 BC and born in the spring of 134 BC, and that a blazing comet adorned the sky in 135 BC.

"Chinese sources record the occurrence of a comet in 135 BC, the year of Mithridates birth. This comet appeared in the constellation of Pegasus." Thesis by Victoria Monica Gyori (2013) (opens in a new tab)

The Chinese records actually have two entries for comets observed in the year 135 BC. The first record states that it was observed “in the west, in July 135 BC”. The second record says it was observed “in the east, in September 135 BC”. Source: "Observations of Comets, from B.C. 611 to A.D. 1649" (opens in a new tab) by John Williams

Summarizing the information we have for this particular comet sighting:

• A most spectacular comet was observed in the Pegasus constellation around mid-135 BC which “lit up the sky for 70 days”. Chinese annals report a comet “in the west” in July 135 BC.

• Chinese records also report a comet “in the east” around September 135 BC.

• Mithridates was, according to historian John T. Ramsey, probably born in the spring of 134 BC.

• Other Chinese records report a comet in July 134 BC.

• Hipparchus saw a comet (mistaking it for a new star) in the Scorpius constellation in 134 BC.

Let us now go to the Tychosium simulator and see where it places Halley’s comet around 135 BC and 134 BC:

Fig. 30.32 Comets observed 135 BC and 134 BC in China (and from other sources)

Astounding, isn’t it? The Tychosium simulator can show Halley’s comet transiting in the years 135 and 134 BC in as many as 5 celestial locations consistent with a wide variety of historical cometary observations and related literature! The agreement between all these relatively independent sources and the screenshot in Figure 30.32 strongly corroborates the validity of the TYCHOS model and the accuracy of the simulator.

Note that the official roster of Halley’s comet makes no mention of a passage anywhere near the year 135 BC, but only has it passing in 164 BC and 87 BC. Hence, this is the first demonstration of the identity between Mithridates’ comet of 135 BC, Hipparchus’ ‘new star’ of 134 BC, and Halley’s comet. In fact, there are numerous problems with the current official ‘European’ roster of Halley’s ancient passages. Most sightings have actually been cherry-picked from various Chinese annals covering sightings of different comets over the ages. The Russian revisionist historians A. T. Fomenko and G. V. Nosovskiy have performed a thorough analysis and critique of how these ancient Chinese records were made to fit the complex European computations of Halley’s visits. Their paper, which has its own flaws and inaccuracies, is nevertheless a useful resource highlighting the problematic nature of the official roster, particularly with regard to Halley’s passages prior to 1456.

"This leads us to a very important conclusion. Taking into account all the above considerations, we must admit that the “Chinese saw-tooth curve” as the presumed recurrence cycle function of Comet Halley is manifestly false. It cannot possibly reflect the real sightings or the real trajectory of the comet. Therefore, it is either of a random nature, or a forgery, all in all, either premeditated or unwilled and resulting from “the very best intentions”. "EMPIRE - Chapter5, Chinese comets / Comet Halley" (opens in a new tab) by A.T.Fomenko and G.V.Nosovskiy

30.6 Other ancient, non-identified transits of Halley’s comet

The following is a list of ancient cometary sightings reported in the literature which would seem to be in excellent agreement with the TYCHOS roster of Halley’s transits, although not a single one of them is listed in the official ‘European’ roster.

362 BC: "China, A broom star comet appeared in the west in 362 BC.” "Broom Star, China" - (opens in a new tab)

In the Tychosium, select the date -362-07-27 and activate Halley’s comet in the ‘Planets’ scroll-down menu. You will see that Halley’s comet would indeed have appeared in the west that year, as seen from the Earth.

209 BC: : “Babylonian cuneiform tablet BM 45608 gives an account of a comet seen sometime within the 4th month of -209. A translation by Herman Hunger (1996) says it “appeared in the path of Ea in the region of Scorpius; it was surrounded by stars; its tail was toward the east.” "Cometography" - A catalog of comets" (opens in a new tab) by Gary W. Kronk

In the Tychosium, select the date -209-04-27 and activate Halley’s comet in the “Planets” scroll-down menu. Also, activate the Zodiac ring in the “Stars & helper objects” scroll-down menu. You will see that Halley’s comet would indeed have passed very close to Earth on 27 April 209 BC, and that it was indeed in Scorpius on that date.

AD 245: "Halley-type comet 12P/Pons-Brooks (hereafter 12P) has been linked to observations dating back to 1385 A.D. and possibly, to observations in 245 A.D. (Green 2020a; Nakano 2020), making it the comet with the second longest observational arc of all known comets, after only 1P/Halley.” "Recovery of Returning Halley-type Comet" - (opens in a new tab)

In the Tychosium, select the date 245-05-01 and activate Halley’s comet in the ‘Planets’ scroll-down menu. You will see that comet Halley passed very close to Earth on 1 May 245 AD. In other words, the documented comet of 245 AD referred to as ‘12/Pons-Brooks’ was in reality Halley’s comet, just as listed in the TYCHOS roster of Halley’s transits.

AD 396: “A record from year 396 AD reports a comet and 'prior to this, a large yellow star’. This apparition was in summer and ‘in winter… the large yellow star appeared again.’ That the star is reported yellow might be due to atmospheric condition and positive omens but the initial position and date of re-appearance matches planet Venus. Of course, they were able to identify Venus but this mantic text uses ‘a star’ in an astrological way where the nature of the object is not at all important.” "Applied and computational astronomy" (opens in a new tab) by G. Wolfschmidt

In the Tychosium, select the date 396-06-01 and activate Halley’s comet in the ‘Planets’ scroll-down menu. You will see that Halley’s comet indeed transited between the Sun and Earth in the summer of 396 AD, as stated in the TYCHOS roster. Next, select the date 396-12-30. You will see that Halley’s comet would indeed have been visible from the Earth in the winter of 396 AD.

323, 399 & 550 AD: Gustave de Pontécoulant was the top French expert of comet Halley’s in his day. In his book "A History of Halley's Comet", he mentions three comets seen in the constellation Virgo in 323, 399 and 550 AD.

Fig. 30.33 Excerpt from “A History of Halley’s Comet” (opens in a new tab) by Gustave de Pontécoulant

In the Tychosium (Fig. 30.34), Halley’s comet may be seen transiting in Virgo on 323-03-05, then on 399-03-05 and then again on 550-03-05. Note that, on all three occasions, the comet found itself in opposition to the Sun and would thus plausibly have been visible to the naked eye at night, despite its considerable distance from the Earth (>2 AU). Consider also that Halley’s comet and its tail were considerably brighter and larger back in those days.

Fig. 30.34

Again, note that none of these three passages are to be found in the current official roster, which has Halley’s passing instead in 374, 451 and 530 AD. So which table of Halley’s transits should we trust? Needless to say, I submit that the TYCHOS roster of comet Halley is hands down the winner. Why? Well, for one thing because it manages to harmonize a regular 75.7-year periodicity with all the historical records of sightings examined in this chapter. But we are not done with the ‘coincidences’ yet. Let us now take a look at yet another double-transit of Halley’s comet, this time in connection with a hotly debated carbon-14 spike event.

30.7 The mysterious carbon-14 event of 774-775 AD

One can find on the internets numerous studies concerning an exceptional spike of carbon-14 levels around the years 774 and 775 AD. Over the last decade, researchers from diverse scientific disciplines have been vividly debating the possible causes of this peculiar and still unexplained phenomenon. The following excerpt from an article by Ethan Siegel is a good place to start, as it succintly summarizes the controversial topic:

"Every once in a while, science gives us a mystery that comes as a complete surprise. Typically, when we slice open a tree and examine its rings, we discover three different forms of carbon in each ring: carbon-12, carbon-13, and carbon-14. While the ratios of carbon-12 and carbon-13 don't appear to change with time, carbon-14 is a different story. Its abundance slowly decays with a half-life of a little over 5,000 years, with a typical variation of about 0.06% from year-to-year in the rings. But in 2012, a team of Japanese researchers were analyzing tree rings dating to the years 774/775, when they noticed an enormous surprise. Instead of the typical variations they were used to, they saw a spike that was 20 times larger than normal. After years of analysis, the unlikely culprit has finally been revealed: the Sun." “Carbon-14 Spiked Worldwide Over 1200 Years Ago, And the Sun Is To Blame” (opens in a new tab) by Ethan Siegel (2020)

So the Sun would be responsible for the spike? Well, in actuality, there is no consensus about that. While some authors have concluded that “large solar super-flares remain very unlikely as the cause for the 14C increase in AD 774/5”, others have suggested that the exceptional 14C-spike in the years 774/775 was the result of a cometary event. To get some perspective, here are some extracts from three academic studies:

"COMET ENCOUNTERS AND CARBON 14". It is noted that the superflare from a large comet (comparable to C/Hale–Bopp) colliding with the sun could produce shock-accelerated GeV cosmic rays in the solar corona and/or solar wind, and possibly account for the C.E. 775 event. Several additional predictions of cometary encounters with the sun and other stars may be observable in the future. (...) "Here we consider whether (1) a giant solar flare or (2) the close approach of a large comet to the sun could have occurred in the year 775, when the levels of 14C rose by 1.2% within a year or so (Miyake et al. 2012)." "Comet Encounters and carbon 14" (opens in a new tab) by Eichler and Mordecai (2012)

"EXCURSIONS IN THE 14C RECORD AT A.D. 774-775 IN TREE RINGS FROM RUSSIA AND AMERICA". Abstract: Improved instrumentation has contributed to high-resolution (interannual) radiocarbon activity measurements, which have revealed sudden and anomalous activity shifts previously not observed at the common resolution of 5–10 years of most of the calibration scale. One such spike has been recently reported from tree rings from Japan and then again in Europe at A.D. 774–775, for which we report here our efforts to both replicate its existence and determine its spatial extent using tree rings from larch at high latitude (northern Siberia) and bristlecone pine from lower latitude (the White Mountains of California). Our results confirm an abrupt ~ 15‰ 14C activity increase from A.D. 774 to 776, the size and now the hemispheric extent of which suggest that an extraterrestrial influence on radiocarbon production is most likely responsible."

"A COMETARY EVENT? In a recent paper, Liu et al. [2014] proposed that the 14C increase at A.D. 774–775 was caused by a cometary impact into the Earth's atmosphere. In their work, they observed a similar 15‰ excursion in corals about the same time."

"CONCLUSIONS: We have confirmed the A.D. 774–775 event in the 14C record at two additional locations, in the western United States and Russia. The amplitude of the event is very similar to previously reported results from Japan, Germany, and New Zealand. This emphasizes the global nature of this phenomenon and according to existing models, only a production-rate change could cause this type of event. The fact that the 14C signal is observed in five very different locations with exactly the same amplitude is remarkable in itself. The exact cause of the event is unclear, although a number of mechanisms have been proposed, all of which require an extraterrestrial origin. It appears then that the A.D. 774–775 event is the first unambiguous case of extraterrestrial enhancement of atmospheric 14C in the tree-ring record." Geophysical Research letters - April 4, 2014 (opens in a new tab)

"A SOLAR SUPER-FLARE AS CAUSE FOR THE 14C VARIATION IN AD 774/775? We present further considerations regarding the strong 14C variation in AD 774/5. For its cause, either a solar super-flare or a short gamma-ray burst were suggested. We show that all kinds of stellar or neutron star flares would be too weak for the observed energy input at Earth in AD 774/5." (...) "We conclude that large solar super-flares remain very unlikely as the cause for the 14C increase in AD 774/5." "Astronomical Notes" (opens in a new tab) by R. Neuhäuser and V. V. Hambaryan (2014)

In other words, there appears to be no scientific consensus as to what exactly caused this exceptional radiocarbon spike of 774/775. Was it a cometary event? Was it a solar super-flare? Or was it a ‘short gamma-ray burst’, as has also been theorized? In any case, the cited studies appear to agree that the cause was extraterrestrial and all concur in dating the event to the years 774/775 AD.

The screenshot from the Tychosium simulator shown in Figure 30.35 illustrates the path of Halley’s comet in the years 774 and 775. On 6 July 774, the comet made a close approach to Earth (0.38 AU) and on 19 April 775 it transited exceptionally near our planet (0.097AU):

Fig. 30.35

Note that, according to the official astronomy tables, Halley’s comet would have passed by Earth about 15 years earlier, in the year 760 AD. Hence, no geophysical study has ever considered the possibility that the ‘mysterious’ spike of 14C levels in 774/775 could be related to the unusual proximity of Halley’s comet.

30.8 Morozov’s dating of the ‘Apocalypse’ (395 AD)

To wrap up this chapter, let us take a look at a fascinating study by the ‘eccentric’ astronomer and historical revisionist, Nikolai Morozov. Morozov’s most compelling historical revision is to be found in a book from 1907 titled “Revelation In Thunderstorm And Tempest. History of the Apocalypses Origin”. The title of the German version translates as “The Revelation to John: An Astronomic Historical Investigation”.

Morozov makes the case that the Bible’s Book of Revelation actually describes an apocalypse-like celestial event which must have occurred on 30 September 395 AD, on occasion of a solar eclipse. For a concise overview of how Morozov reached his conclusions, this Wikipedia page is a good place to start. In fact, it may be all you need to understand the ‘revelation’ I will make a little further on: "The Revelation in Storm and Thunder" - Wikipedia (opens in a new tab)

Morozov’s thesis was initially harshly criticized by theologians and assorted academics, but over time astronomers have been probing his claims and have had to concede that, ‘chrono-cosmologically’ speaking, they are virtually incontrovertible:

"The description within the Book of Revelation matches exactly the Constellation for the Julian date 30-9-395". (...) "Sun, Moon and the 3 outer and 2 inner planets will produce 3.732.480 combinations within the 12 signs of the zodiac (125 × 5 × 3). Therefore, an accidental match is quite unlikely." (from above-linked Wikipedia page)

In other words, the peculiar positional configuration of our Sun, Moon and planets on that date, as described in the Book of Revelation, has only 1 chance in 3 700 000 of occurring! There can therefore be little doubt that Morozov’s thesis and calculations rest on solid ground. However, as lamented by one of his fiercest critics, Morozov’s interpretation of the Book of Revelation is leaving out significant details of the celestial metaphor. In a paper titled “Pseudoscience and Revelation”, reproduced in Figure 30.36, Professor Bobrovnikoff points out that the famous Biblical text also mentions 200,000,000 horsemen and countless locusts that looked like horses. Bobrovnikoff thus mockingly asks whether there was, in addition to the solar eclipse and the quite remarkable planetary alignments of that day, also a meteoric shower to boot (“and the stars of heaven fell unto the earth”). In short, Bobrovnikoff attacks Morozov for failing to account for the “200 million horsemen” mentioned in the Book of Revelation.

Fig. 30.36 Extract from "Pseudoscience and Revelation" - by N.T. Bobrovnikoff (1941) (opens in a new tab)

So what might have caused the ‘stars of Heaven to fall unto the Earth’ on September 30, 395 AD? As we consult the Tychosium, we find that none other than comet Halley had just made a most exceptional passage right above the Earth in mid-August. Its long tail would thus have cut across the incoming, annual Leonid meteor shower. We may only imagine what a terrifying sequence of events played out in the skies in the autumn of 395 AD: Halley’s comet would have emerged with its blazing tail right in front of Mars, traditionally associated with the god of war. Then, on the 30th of September (with the Moon, Mercury, Venus and Saturn transiting in roughly the same portion of the sky) a solar eclipse took place while, perhaps simultaneously, a most formidable meteor shower would have lit up the skies. Those who witnessed this cosmic spectacle must have thought the end had come, in the grandest possible style.

In fact, the most spectacular meteor shower in recent memory took place in 1833, making people wonder if it was a sign of the end of the world. As shown in Fig. 30.37, the path of Halley’s comet as it passed closest to Earth in the autumn of 1833 was very similar to its path in the autumn of 395, the two events being separated by 1438 years (i.e. ≈19 x 75.7y). Once more, the Tychosium can elucidate two historical celestial events associated with Halley’s comet.

Fig. 30.37 Fig. 30.36: Halley’s passages in the autumn of 395 and 1833, as depicted in the Tychosium simulator.

Note that, in the Tychosium simulator, the celestial locations of all the planets and our Moon for that date are in excellent agreement with Morozov’s calculated ephemerides. In fact, even Bobrovnikoff acknowledges the correctness of Morozov’s computed positions for Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, Saturn and the Moon on 30 September 395 AD:

”Morozov’s reasoning is briefly the following: The procession of the four horsemen of the apocalyptic vision (Rev, 6:2) is taken to mean four planets which are identified mainly by the color of the horses; namely, the white horse of Jupiter, the red one of Mars, the black one with Mercury, and the pale one with Saturn. The constellations in which the planets were supposed to have been at the time of the vision were identified from the description of the riders. Thus Mercury was in Libra because the rider of the black horse had scales in his hand. Finally, the vision of “a woman clothed with the sun and the moon under her feet” (Rev. 12:1) is taken to mean an eclipse of the sun occurring when the sun was at the feet of the constellation Virgo. Approximate calculations showed that an eclipse of the sun on September 30, A.D. 395, would satisfy the assigned positions of the planets. Morozov’s assignment of the planets to the corresponding constellations for that date was later confirmed by rigorous calculations carried out by two Poulkovo astronomers, Liapin and Kamensky.” "Pseudo-Science and Revelation" (opens in a new tab) by N.T. Bobrovnikoff

Keep in mind that Halley’s comet has been gradually shrinking over the centuries and was therefore a far brighter and impressive object in the past. To be sure, Morozov himself never suggested that those “200 million horsemen” might have been a celestial metaphor describing comet Halley’s blazing tail (and very likely a fiery meteoric shower) since no conventional historical records exist of the famous comet visiting our solar system anywhere near the year 395 AD (the official tables have Halley’s passing in 374 AD and 451 AD). The TYCHOS model thus provides compelling ‘cosmological support’ to Morozov’s thesis by effectively countering Bobrovnikoff’s argument of the absent ‘horsemen’.

Fig. 30.38 From the Book of Revelation 6,4: "And there went out another horse that was red [Mars?]: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword"[Halley's tail?].

30.9 Conclusive remarks

To my knowledge, no existing model of our Solar System other than the TYCHOS can rationally account for the behaviour of Halley’s comet, as recorded throughout the centuries by scores of observational astronomers and historians. To be sure, Newtonian equations have proven to be wholly inadequate for computing Halley’s appearances even in the modern era, as stated in a paper published in 2015 by the Cambridge University Press:

"Numerical experiments have been made in an attempt to remove the residuals of P/Halley and link the seven apparitions from 1456 to 1910. All efforts to link more than two apparitions using Newtonian equations have invariably failed." "The Motion of Halley's Comet from 837 to 1910" (opens in a new tab) by J. L. Brady (2015)

The paper goes on to say that anomalies found in the official (‘European’) roster of Halley’s ancient passages “can be made reasonable if the Chinese records are adopted in preference to the European records”. In other words, our Copernican astronomers are openly admitting that they have been cherry-picking the cometary sightings in the extensive Chinese records that best suited their theories and computations. This sounds to me rather like the opposite of the scientific method!

I believe to have definitively demonstrated that Halley’s comet has a constant and regular period of 75.7 years, much like all the other celestial bodies in our system. The notion of a cigar-shaped orbit with a period fluctuating by as many as 6 years has no place in astronomy. How the Newtonian ‘universal law of gravitation’ could possibly justify the starkly different orbital shapes of comets and asteroids is truly unfathomable. The TYCHOS model provides unassailable evidence that a large number of comets ‘coincidentally’ passing a couple of years before or after Halley’s officially recognized transits were simply early or late appearances of comet Halley itself. Critics and opponents of the present research are welcome to try and argue that all these comets closely preceding or following Halley’s transits were nothing but clusters of merry coincidences. However, from the outset it would give the distinct impression that the conclusion is more important than sound logic and facts.

This concludes the 2nd Edition of my book on the TYCHOS model. Five years of extensive research lie between this and the 1st Edition, released in 2018. I trust the new contents and discoveries will stimulate a sound and earnest debate among scientists and laymen willing to reexamine their lifelong beliefs. I am fully aware that my findings will ruffle a great many feathers; however, having grown a thick skin over the years, I will be enjoying every minute of what I expect to be a long and arduous journey, riddled with the inevitable scorn and ridicule that precede all inconvenient discoveries. Meanwhile, I will be confidently looking forward to the inevitable collective ‘cosmo-logical’ realization that we live in a binary system, similar to all the star systems that surround us. In any event, the heliocentric Copernican model is broken beyond repair and needs to be abandoned once and for all.

As I like to say, the TYCHOS is here to stay.