Page:Philosophical Transactions - Volume 095.djvu/309

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on the singular Figure of the Planet Saturn.

with the four corners rounded off so as to leave both the equatorial and polar regions flatter than they would be in a regular spheroidical figure.

The planet Jupiter being by this time got up to a considerable altitude, I viewed it alternately with Saturn in the 10-feet reflector, with a power of 500. The outlines of the figure of Saturn are as described in the observation of the 40-feet telescope; but those of Jupiter are such as to give a greater curvature both to the polar and equatorial regions than takes place at the poles or equator of Saturn which are comparatively much flatter.

May 12. I viewed Saturn and Jupiter alternately with my large 10-feet telescope of 24 inches aperture; and saw plainly that the former planet differs much in figure from the latter. The temperature of the air is so changeable that no large mirror can act well.

May 13. 10-feet reflector, power 300. The shadows of the ring upon the body, and of the body upon the ring, are very black, and not of the dusky colour of the heavens about the planet, or of the space between the ring and planet, and between the two rings. The north-following part of the ring, close to the planet, is as it were cut off by the shadow of the body; and the shadow of the ring lies south of it, but close to the projection of the ring.

The planet is of the form described in the observation of the 40-feet telescope; I see it so distinctly that there can be nodoubt of it. By the appearance, I should think the points of the greatest curvature not to be so far north as 45 degrees.

The evening being very calm and clear, I took a measure