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  • Thumb of The Comet Has Inspired A Lot Of Fiction video

    (#12) The Comet Has Inspired A Lot Of Fiction

    What is it about Halley's Comet that brings out our ideas for worst case scenarios? People are obsessed about what could happen if a comet did... something, and while the films aren't scientifically accurate in the least, they are a lot of fun. 

    For instance, in Night of the Comet, everyone on Earth (except people who were in lead buildings, the safest places imaginable) are turned into zombies. In Coherence, a dinner party goes wrong after a comet creates multiple realities. And let's not forget Maximum Overdrive - you know, the movie about a comet bringing all of the Earth's electronics to life and forcing semi-trucks to chase down Emilio Estevez and company to the rockin' sounds of AC/DC. In the words of Bon Scott, if you want comet, you've got it. 

  • Mark Twain's Life Eerily Mirrored The Comet's Orbit on Random A Long, Strange History of Halley Comet

    (#6) Mark Twain's Life Eerily Mirrored The Comet's Orbit

    Mark Twain was an anomaly. Not just because his writing was able to beautifully encapsulate every day life, or because he somehow always had a perfectly tailored white linen suit. He was also one of the few people whose life lined up nearly exactly with Halley's Comet. 

    He was born two weeks after the comet appeared in 1835, and he passed when it returned in 1910. Of his relation to the comet, he said

    "I came in with Halley’s Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don’t go out with Halley’s Comet. The Almighty has said, no doubt: ‘Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together."

    He died one day after the comet soared through the sky. 

  • Genghis Khan Believed It Was His "Personal Star" on Random A Long, Strange History of Halley Comet

    (#5) Genghis Khan Believed It Was His "Personal Star"

    Genghis Khan was the founder of the Mongol Empire, a vast army of disparate nomadic tribes, whose rule extended across modern-day China, Korea, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and substantial portions of Eastern Europe and Southwest Asia. When Halley's orbited in 1222 CE, Khan supposedly took inspiration from the comet and believed it was his "personal star." He decided to follow the comet west into southeastern Europe and continue the growth of his empire.

  • Greek Scholars Describe A Tourist Attraction Created By Halley's Comet on Random A Long, Strange History of Halley Comet

    (#11) Greek Scholars Describe A Tourist Attraction Created By Halley's Comet

    It doesn't matter in which era they were born, scientists love Halley's Comet. They want to know what's it about, what it's made of, and why it taunts us with its fiery whip of a tail. Ancient scholars from Greece, China, and Babylonian societies studied the comet and made some very impressive observations

    Greek scholars described a "wagonload" sized meteor that struck Northern Greece while Halley's Comet was visible in the sky. According to Jo Marchant, a science journalist and author, this turned the area of Greece hit by the meteor into a "tourist attraction," and likely put the fear of the comet into the Greeks. 

    People are now aware pieces of the comet burn up and come loose during its orbit, accounting for meteors that make their way to Earth. At one point it was believed that the comet had even split in two

  • Venus May Be Responsible For Halley's Chaotic Orbit on Random A Long, Strange History of Halley Comet

    (#7) Venus May Be Responsible For Halley's Chaotic Orbit

    For decades, scientists blamed Jupiter as one of the main culprits behind the lopsided orbit of Halley's Comet, but this gas giant with a mass of two-and-a-half times that of the other planets in the solar system isn't to blame. We should actually be pointing our fingers at Venus. 

    According to Tjarda Boekholt of Leiden University, he did "the most accurate calculations of Halley and the planets ever" and discovered Venus has the biggest effect on the comet out of everything in the solar system... although they're not sure why. Boekholt believes in about 3,000 years, the comet is going to fly close enough to Jupiter for the planet's gravitational pull to have a larger impact. From there on, no one can predict what's going to happen. 

  • Ancient Civilizations Believed The Comet Predicted Calamities on Random A Long, Strange History of Halley Comet

    (#10) Ancient Civilizations Believed The Comet Predicted Calamities

    Halley's Comet wasn't always a thing of wonder. Prior to humanity's scientific knowledge of celestial bodies, many people believed the comet was a sign of terrible things to come. People believed it predicted everything from war, famines, and even the end of days. 

    In 66 CE, first-century Romano-Jewish scholar Flavius Josephus believed the "star resembling a sword” meant the coming destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans. Hundreds of years later, Holy Roman Emperor Louis the Pious thought the comet was an omen signaling his eventual demise. Even though we now know Halley's has no affect on our day to day lives, there are still people who still believe the comet is a sign of the end times. 

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The Halley’s Comet has an orbital period of 76 to 79 years, and the next time it crosses perihelion is July 28, 2061. The Halley’s Comet is The Halley’s Comet has an orbital period of 76 to 79 years, and its next pass through perihelion will be on July 28, 2061. The Halley’s Comet was the first periodic comet to be recorded, and its appearance was well documented in China, ancient Babylon, and medieval Europe until 240 BC or 466 BC, but they didn’t know it was the same comet.

This randomly generated tool catalogs 14 items that you don’t know about the history of the supernatural, including the fact that it once filled our atmosphere with deadly cyanide in 1910, some people believe that Halley’s Comet is Star of Bethlehem and so on, many of which we’ve never heard before.

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