Solar System History

Historians of human events generally enjoy two advantages over would-be historians of the solar system. Those who chronicle human history often have records, even eyewitness reports, and they have the availability of precedent events and subsequent events. For example, a historian of the American Civil War not only has a wealth of eyewitness accounts to draw on, but may also look to civil wars both before and after 1861 to 1865 to help explain the War between the States. Comparing and contrasting the American Civil War to the English civil wars of the seventeenth century or the Russian Civil War of the twentieth may help illuminate analysis and make explanations clearer.

The solar system historian lacks both witnesses and precedents. But she has several advantages as well. Human history is complicated by the infinite depths of the human mind. But if we understand the fundamental laws of physics, and make good observations of our solar system today, a recounting of the early history of the solar system should be within our grasp.

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