Reflections on Titan

I found this quote on Stephen van Vuuren’s blog, commemorating the fifth anniversary of the Huygens landing on Titan. These thoughts were made 300 years before Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot:

How vast these Orbs must be, and how inconsiderable this Earth, the Theatre upon which all our mighty Designs, all our Navigations, and all our Wars are transacted, is when compared to them. A very fit consideration, and matter of Reflection, for those Kings and Princes who sacrifice the Lives of so many People, only to flatter their Ambition in being Masters of some pitiful corner of this small Spot.

-Christiaan Huygens, New Conjectures Concerning the Planetary Worlds, Their Inhabitants and Productions, c. 1690.

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