The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy (1846)/BookIII-Prop2
PROPOSITION X. THEOREM X.
That the motions of the planets in the heavens may subsist an exceedingly long time.
In the Scholium of Prop. XL, Book II, I have shewed that a globe of water frozen into ice, and moving freely in our air, in the time that it would describe the length of its semi-diameter, would lose by the resistance of the air 1⁄4586 part of its motion; and the same proportion holds nearly in all globes, how great soever, and moved with whatever velocity. But that our globe of earth is of greater density than it would be if the whole consisted of water only, I thus make out. If the whole consisted of water only, whatever was of less density than water, because of its less specific gravity, would emerge and float above. And upon this account, if a globe of terrestrial matter, covered on all sides with water, was less dense than water, it would emerge somewhere; and, the subsiding water falling back, would be gathered to the opposite side. And such is the condition of our earth, which in a great measure is covered with seas. The earth, if it was not for its greater density, would emerge from the seas, and, according to its degree of levity, would be raised more or less above their surface, the water of the seas flowing backward to the opposite side. By the same argument, the spots of the sun, which float upon the lucid matter thereof, are lighter than that matter; and, however the planets have been formed while they were yet in fluid masses, all the heavier matter subsided to the centre. Since, therefore, the common matter of our earth on the surface thereof is about twice as heavy as water, and a little lower, in mines, is found about three, or four, or even five times more heavy, it is probable that the quantity of the whole matter of the earth may be five or six times greater than if it consisted all of water; especially since I have before shewed that the earth is about four times more dense than Jupiter. If, therefore, Jupiter is a little more dense than water, in the space of thirty days, in which that planet describes the length of 459 of its semi-diameters, it would, in a medium of the same density with our air, lose almost a tenth part of its motion. But since the resistance of mediums decreases in proportion to their weight or density, so that water, which is 133⁄5 times lighter than quicksilver, resists less in that proportion; and air, which is 860 times lighter than water, resists less in the same proportion; therefore in the heavens, where the weight of the medium in which the planets move is immensely diminished, the resistance will almost vanish.
It is shewn in the Scholium of Prop. XXII, Book II, that at the height of 200 miles above the earth the air is more rare than it is at the superficies of the earth in the ratio of 30 to 0,0000000000003998, or as 75000000000000 to 1 nearly. And hence the planet Jupiter, revolving in a medium of the same density with that superior air, would not lose by the resistance of the medium the 1000000th part of its motion in 1000000 years. In the spaces near the earth the resistance is produced only by the air, exhalations, and vapours. When these are carefully exhausted by the air-pump from under the receiver, heavy bodies fall within the receiver with perfect freedom, and without the least sensible resistance: gold itself, and the lightest down, let fall together, will descend with equal velocity; and though they fall through a space of four, six, and eight feet, they will come to the bottom at the same time; as appears from experiments. And therefore the celestial regions being perfectly void of air and exhalations, the planets and comets meeting no sensible resistance in those spaces will continue their motions through them for an immense tract of time.
That the centre of the system of the world is immovable.
This is acknowledged by all, while some contend that the earth, others that the sun, is fixed in that centre. Let us see what may from hence follow.
PROPOSITION XI. THEOREM XI.
That the common centre of gravity of the earth, the sun, and all the planets, is immovable.
For (by Cor. 4 of the Laws) that centre either is at rest, or moves uniformly forward in a right line; but if that centre moved, the centre of the world would move also, against the Hypothesis.
PROPOSITION XII. THEOREM XII.
- That the sun is agitated by a perpetual motion, but never recedes far from the common centre of gravity of all the planets.
For since (by Cor. 2, Prop. VIII) the quantity of matter in the sun is to the quantity of matter in Jupiter as 1067 to 1; and the distance of Jupiter from the sun is to the semi-diameter of the sun in a proportion but a small matter greater, the common centre of gravity of Jupiter and the sun will fall upon a point a little without the surface of the sun. By the same argument, since the quantity of matter in the sun is to the quantity of matter in Saturn as 3021 to 1, and the distance of Saturn from the sun is to the semi-diameter of the sun in a proportion but a small matter less, the common centre of gravity of Saturn and the sun will fall upon a point a little within the surface of the sun. And, pursuing the principles of this computation, we should find that though the earth and all the planets were placed on one side of the sun, the distance of the common centre of gravity of all from the centre of the sun would scarcely amount to one diameter of the sun. In other cases, the distances of those centres are always less; and therefore, since that centre of gravity is in perpetual rest, the sun, according to the various positions of the planets, must perpetually be moved every way, but will never recede far from that centre.
Cor. Hence the common centre of gravity of the earth, the sun, and all the planets, is to be esteemed the centre of the world; for since the earth, the sun, and all the planets, mutually gravitate one towards another, and are therefore, according to their powers of gravity, in perpetual agitation, as the Laws of Motion require, it is plain that their moveable centres can not be taken for the immovable centre of the world. If that body were to be placed in the centre, towards which other bodies gravitate most (according to common opinion), that privilege ought to be allowed to the sun; but since the sun itself is moved, a fixed point is to be chosen from which the centre of the sun recedes least, and from which it would recede yet less if the body of the sun were denser and greater, and therefore less apt to be moved.
PROPOSITION XIII. THEOREM XIII.
- The planets move in ellipses which have their common focus in the centre of the sun; and, by radii drawn to that centre, they describe areas proportional to the times of description.
We have discoursed above of these motions from the Phænomena. Now that we know the principles on which they depend, from those principles we deduce the motions of the heavens à priori. Because the weights of the planets towards the sun are reciprocally as the squares of their distances from the sun's centre, if the sun was at rest, and the other planets did not mutually act one upon another, their orbits would be ellipses, having the sun in their common focus; and they would describe areas proportional to the times of description, by Prop, I and XI, and Cor. 1, Prop. XIII, Book I. But the mutual actions of the planets one upon another are so very small, that they may be neglected; and by Prop. LXVI, Book I, they less disturb the motions of the planets around the sun in motion than if those motions were performed about the sun at rest.
It is true, that the action of Jupiter upon Saturn is not to be neglected; for the force of gravity towards Jupiter is to the force of gravity towards the sun (at equal distances, Cor. 2, Prop. VIII) as 1 to 1067; and therefore in the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, because the distance of Saturn from Jupiter is to the distance of Saturn from the sun almost as 4 to 9, the gravity of Saturn towards Jupiter will be to the gravity of Saturn towards the sun as 81 to 16 1067; or, as 1 to about 211. And hence arises a perturbation of the orb of Saturn in every conjunction of this planet with Jupiter, so sensible, that astronomers are puzzled with it. As the planet is differently situated in these conjunctions, its eccentricity is sometimes augmented, sometimes diminished; its aphelion is sometimes carried forward, sometimes backward, and its mean motion is by turns accelerated and retarded; yet the whole error in its motion about the sun, though arising from so great a force, may be almost avoided (except in the mean motion) by placing the lower focus of its orbit in the common centre of gravity of Jupiter and the sun (according to Prop. LXVII, Book I), and therefore that error, when it is greatest, scarcely exceeds two minutes; and the greatest error in the mean motion scarcely exceeds two minutes yearly. But in the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, the accelerative forces of gravity of the sun towards Saturn, of Jupiter towards Saturn, and of Jupiter towards the sun, are almost as 16,81, and ; or 156609: and therefore the difference of the forces of gravity of the sun towards Saturn, and of Jupiter towards Saturn, is to the force of gravity of Jupiter towards the sun as 65 to 156609, or as 1 to 2409. But the greatest power of Saturn to disturb the motion of Jupiter is proportional to this difference; and therefore the perturbation of the orbit of Jupiter is much less than that of Saturn's. The perturbations of the other orbits are yet far less, except that the orbit of the earth is sensibly disturbed by the moon. The common centre of gravity of the earth and moon moves in an ellipsis about the sun in the focus thereof, and, by a radius drawn to the sun, describes areas proportional to the times of description. But the earth in the mean time by a menstrual motion is revolved about this common centre.
PROPOSITION XIV. THEOREM XIV.
The aphelions and nodes of the orbits of the planets are fixed.
The aphelions are immovable by Prop. XI, Book I; and so are the planes of the orbits, by Prop. I of the same Book. And if the planes are fixed, the nodes must be so too. It is true, that some inequalities may arise from the mutual actions of the planets and comets in their revolutions; but these will be so small, that they may be here passed by.
Cor. 1. The fixed stars are immovable, seeing they keep the same position to the aphelions and nodes of the planets.
Cor. 2. And since these stars are liable to no sensible parallax from the annual motion of the earth, they can have no force, because of their immense distance, to produce any sensible effect in our system. Not to mention that the fixed stars, every where promiscuously dispersed in the heavens, by their contrary attractions destroy their mutual actions, by Prop. LXX, Book I.
Since the planets near the sun (viz. Mercury, Venus, the Earth, and Mars) are so small that they can act with but little force upon each other, therefore their aphelions and nodes must be fixed, excepting in so far as they are disturbed by the actions of Jupiter and Saturn, and other higher bodies. And hence we may find, by the theory of gravity, that their aphelions move a little in consequentia, in respect of the fixed stars, and that in the sesquiplicate proportion of their several distances from the sun. So that if the aphelion of Mars, in the space of a hundred years, is carried 33′ 20″ in consequentia, in respect of the fixed stars; the aphelions of the Earth, of Venus, and of Mercury, will in a hundred years be carried forwards 17′ 40″, 10′ 53″, and 4′ 16″, respectively. But these motions are so inconsiderable, that we have neglected them in this Proposition,
PROPOSITION XV. PROBLEM I.
To find the principal diameters of the orbits of the planets.
They are to be taken in the sub-sesquiplicate proportion of the periodic times, by Prop. XV, Book I, and then to be severally augmented in the proportion of the sum of the masses of matter in the sun and each planet to the first of two mean proportionals betwixt that sum and the quantity of matter in the sun, by Prop. LX, Book I.
PROPOSITION XVI. PROBLEM II.
To find the eccentricities and aphelions of the planets.
This Problem is resolved by Prop. XVIII, Book I.
PROPOSITION XVII. THEOREM XV.
That the diurnal motions of the planets are uniform, and that the libration of the moon arises from its diurnal motion.
The Proposition is proved from the first Law of Motion, and Cor. 22, Prop. LXVI, Book I. Jupiter, with respect to the fixed stars, revolves in 9h.56′; Mars in 24h.39′; Venus in about 23h.; the Earth in 23h.56′; the Sun in 25½ days, and the moon in 27 days, 7 hours, 43′. These things appear by the Phænomena. The spots in the sun's body return to the same situation on the sun's disk, with respect to the earth, in 27½ days; and therefore with respect to the fixed stars the sun revolves in about 25½ days. But because the lunar day, arising from its uniform revolution about its axis, is menstrual, that is, equal to the time of its periodic revolution in its orb, therefore the same face of the moon will be always nearly turned to the upper focus of its orb; but, as the situation of that focus requires, will deviate a little to one side and to the other from the earth in the lower focus; and this is the libration in longitude; for the libration in latitude arises from the moon's latitude, and the inclination of its axis to the plane of the ecliptic. This theory of the libration of the moon, Mr. N. Mercator in his Astronomy, published at the beginning of the year 1676, explained more fully out of the letters I sent him. The utmost satellite of Saturn seems to revolve about its axis with a motion like this of the moon, respecting Saturn continually with the same face; for in its revolution round Saturn, as often as it comes to the eastern part of its orbit, it is scarcely visible, and generally quite disappears; which is like to be occasioned by some spots in that part of its body, which is then turned towards the earth, as M. Cassini has observed. So also the utmost satellite of Jupiter seems to revolve about its axis with a like motion, because in that part of its body which is turned from Jupiter it has a spot, which always appears as if it were in Jupiter's own body, whenever the satellite passes between Jupiter and our eye.
PROPOSITION XVIII. THEOREM XVI.
That the axes of the planets are less than the diameters drawn perpendicular to the axes.
The equal gravitation of the parts on all sides would give a spherical figure to the planets, if it was not for their diurnal revolution in a circle. By that circular motion it comes to pass that the parts receding from the axis endeavour to ascend about the equator; and therefore if the matter is in a fluid state, by its ascent towards the equator it will enlarge the diameters there, and by its descent towards the poles it will shorten the axis. So the diameter of Jupiter (by the concurring observations of astronomers) is found shorter betwixt pole and pole than from east to west. And, by the same argument, if our earth was not higher about the equator than at the poles, the seas would subside about the poles, and, rising towards the equator, would lay all things there under water.
PROPOSITION XIX. PROBLEM III.
To find the proportion of the axis of a planet to the diameter, perpendicular thereto.
Our countryman, Mr. Norwood, measuring a distance of 905751 feet of London measure between London and York, in 1635, and observing the difference of latitudes to be 2° 28′, determined the measure of one degree to be 367196 feet of London measure, that is 57300 Paris toises. M. Picart, measuring an arc of one degree, and 22′ 55″ of the meridian between Amiens and Malvoisine, found an arc of one degree to be 57060 Paris toises. M. Cassini, the father, measured the distance upon the meridian from the town of Collioure in Roussillon to the Observatory of Paris; and his son added the distance from the Observatory to the Citadel of Dunkirk. The whole distance was 486156½ toises and the difference of the latitudes of Collioure and Dunkirk was 8 degrees, and 31′ 115⁄6″. Hence an arc of one degree appears to be 57061 Paris toises. And from these measures we conclude that the circumference of the earth is 123249600, and its semi-diameter 19615800 Paris feet, upon the supposition that the earth is of a spherical figure.
In the latitude of Paris a heavy body falling in a second of time describes 15 Paris feet, 1 inch, 17⁄9 line, as above, that is, 2173 lines 7⁄9. The weight of the body is diminished by the weight of the ambient air. Let us suppose the weight lost thereby to be 1⁄11000 part of the whole weight; then that heavy body falling in vacuo will describe a height of 2174 lines in one second of time.
A body in every sidereal day of 23h.56′ 4″ uniformly revolving in a circle at the distance of 19615800 feet from the centre, in one second of time describes an arc of 1433,46 feet; the versed sine of which is 0,05236561 feet, or 7,54064 lines. And therefore the force with which bodies descend in the latitude of Paris is to the centrifugal force of bodies in the equator arising from the diurnal motion of the earth as 2174 to 7,54064.
The centrifugal force of bodies in the equator is to the centrifugal force with which bodies recede directly from the earth in the latitude of Paris 48° 50′ 10″ in the duplicate proportion of the radius to the cosine of the latitude, that is, as 7,54064 to 3,267. Add this force to the force with which bodies descend by their weight in the latitude of Paris, and a body, in the latitude of Paris, falling by its whole undiminished force of gravity, in the time of one second, will describe 2177,267 lines, or 15 Paris feet, 1 inch, and 5,267 lines. And the total force of gravity in that latitude will be to the centrifugal force of bodies in the equator of the earth as 2177,267 to 7,54064, or as 289 to 1.
Wherefore if APBQ represent the figure of the earth, now no longer spherical, but generated by the rotation of an ellipsis about its lesser axis PQ; and ACQqca a canal full of water, reaching from the pole Qq to the centre Cc, and thence rising to the equator Aa; the weight of the water in the leg of the canal ACca will be to the weight of water in the other leg QCcq as 289 to 288, because the centrifugal force arising from the circular motion sustains and takes off one of the 289 parts of the weight (in the one leg), and the weight of 288 in the other sustains the rest. But by computation (from Cor. 2, Prop. XCI, Book I) I find, that, if the matter of the earth was all uniform, and without any motion, and its axis PQ were to the diameter AB as 100 to 101, the force of gravity in the place Q towards the earth would be to the force of gravity in the same place Q towards a sphere described about the centre C with the radius PC, or QC, as 126 to 125. And, by the same argument, the force of gravity in the place A towards the spheroid generated by the rotation of the ellipsis APBQ about the axis AB is to the force of gravity in the same place A, towards the sphere described about the centre C with the radius AC, as 125 to 126. But the force of gravity in the place A towards the earth is a mean proportional betwixt the forces of gravity towards the spheroid and this sphere; because the sphere, by having its diameter PQ diminished in the proportion of 101 to 100, is transformed into the figure of the earth; and this figure, by having a third diameter perpendicular to the two diameters AB and PQ diminished in the same proportion, is converted into the said spheroid; and the force of gravity in A, in either case, is diminished nearly in the same proportion. Therefore the force of gravity in A towards the sphere described about the centre C with the radius AC, is to the force of gravity in A towards the earth as 126 to 125½. And the force of gravity in the place Q towards the sphere described about the centre C with the radius QC, is to the force of gravity in the place A towards the sphere described about the centre C, with the radius AC, in the proportion of the diameters (by Prop. LXXII, Book I), that is, as 100 to 101. If, therefore, we compound those three proportions 126 to 125, 126 to 125½, and 100 to 101, into one, the force of gravity in the place Q towards the earth will be to the force of gravity in the place A towards the earth as 126 126 100 to 125 125½ 101; or as 501 to 500.
Now since (by Cor. 3, Prop. XCI, Book I) the force of gravity in either leg of the canal ACca, or QCcq, is as the distance of the places from the centre of the earth, if those legs are conceived to be divided by transverse, parallel, and equidistant surfaces, into parts proportional to the wholes, the weights of any number of parts in the one leg ACca will be to the weights of the same number of parts in the other leg as their magnitudes and the accelerative forces of their gravity conjunctly, that is, as 101 to 100, and 500 to 501, or as 505 to 501. And therefore if the centrifugal force of every part in the leg ACca, arising from the diurnal motion, was to the weight of the same part as 4 to 505, so that from the weight of every part, conceived to be divided into 505 parts, the centrifugal force might take off four of those parts, the weights would remain equal in each leg, and therefore the fluid would rest in an equilibrium. But the centrifugal force of every part is to the weight of the same part as 1 to 289; that is, the centrifugal force, which should be 4⁄505 parts of the weight, is only 1⁄289 part thereof. And, therefore, I say, by the rule of proportion, that if the centrifugal force 4⁄505 make the height of the water in the leg ACca to exceed the height of the water in the leg QCcq by one 1⁄100 part of its whole height, the centrifugal force 1⁄289 will make the excess of the height in the leg ACca only 1⁄289 part of the height of the water in the other leg QCcq; and therefore the diameter of the earth at the equator, is to its diameter from pole to pole as 230 to 229. And since the mean semi-diameter of the earth, according to Picart's mensuration, is 19615800 Paris feet, or 3923,16 miles (reckoning 5000 feet to a mile), the earth will be higher at the equator than at the poles by 85472 feet, or 17⅒ miles. And its height at the equator will be about 19658600 feet, and at the poles 19573000 feet.
If, the density and periodic time of the diurnal revolution remaining the same, the planet was greater or less than the earth, the proportion of the centrifugal force to that of gravity, and therefore also of the diameter betwixt the poles to the diameter at the equator, would likewise remain the same. But if the diurnal motion was accelerated or retarded in any proportion, the centrifugal force would be augmented or diminished nearly in the same duplicate proportion; and therefore the difference of the diameters will be increased or diminished in the same duplicate ratio very nearly. And if the density of the planet was augmented or diminished in any proportion, the force of gravity tending towards it would also be augmented or diminished in the same proportion: and the difference of the diameters contrariwise would be diminished in proportion as the force of gravity is augmented, and augmented in proportion as the force of gravity is diminished. Wherefore, since the earth, in respect of the fixed stars, revolves in 23h.56′, but Jupiter in 9h.56′, and the squares of their periodic times are as 29 to 5, and their densities as 400 to 94½, the difference of the diameters of Jupiter will be to its lesser diameter as to 1, or as 1 to 9⅓, nearly. Therefore the diameter of Jupiter from east to west is to its diameter from pole to pole nearly as 10⅓ to 9⅓. Therefore since its greatest diameter is 37″, its lesser diameter lying between the poles will be 33″ 25‴. Add thereto about 3″ for the irregular refraction of light, and the apparent diameters of this planet will become 40″ and 36″ 25‴; which are to each other as 11⅙ to 10⅙, very nearly. These things are so upon the supposition that the body of Jupiter is uniformly dense. But now if its body be denser towards the plane of the equator than towards the poles, its diameters may be to each other as 12 to 11, or 13 to 12, or perhaps as 14 to 13.
And Cassini observed in the year 1691, that the diameter of Jupiter reaching from east to west is greater by about a fifteenth part than the other diameter. Mr. Pound with his 123 feet telescope, and an excellent micrometer, measured the diameters of Jupiter in the year 1719, and found them as follow.
|The Times.||Greatest diam.||Lesser diam.||The diam. to each other.|
So that the theory agrees with the phænomena; for the planets are more heated by the sun's rays towards their equators, and therefore are a little more condensed by that heat than towards their poles.
Moreover, that there is a diminution of gravity occasioned by the diurnal rotation of the earth, and therefore the earth rises higher there than it does at the poles (supposing that its matter is uniformly dense), will appear by the experiments of pendulums related under the following Proposition.
PROPOSITION XX. PROBLEM IV.
To find and compare together the weights of bodies in the different regions of our earth.
Because the weights of the unequal legs of the canal of water ACQqca are equal; and the weights of the parts proportional to the whole legs, and alike situated in them, are one to another as the weights of the wholes, and therefore equal betwixt themselves; the weights of equal parts, and alike situated in the legs, will be reciprocally as the legs, that is, reciprocally as 230 to 229. And the case is the same in all homogeneous equal bodies alike situated in the legs of the canal. Their weights are reciprocally as the legs, that is, reciprocally as the distances of the bodies from the centre of the earth. Therefore if the bodies are situated in the uppermost parts of the canals, or on the surface of the earth, their weights will be one to another reciprocally as their distances from the centre. And, by the same argument, the weights in all other places round the whole surface of the earth are reciprocally as the distances of the places from the centre; and, therefore, in the hypothesis of the earth's being a spheroid are given in proportion.
Whence arises this Theorem, that the increase of weight in passing from the equator to the poles is nearly as the versed sine of double the latitude; or, which comes to the same thing, as the square of the right sine of the latitude; and the arcs of the degrees of latitude in the meridian increase nearly in the same proportion. And, therefore, since the latitude of Paris is 48° 50′, that of places under the equator 00° 00′, and that of places under the poles 90°; and the versed sines of double those arcs are 11334,00000 and 20000, the radius being 10000; and the force of gravity at the pole is to the force of gravity at the equator as 230 to 229; and the excess of the force of gravity at the pole to the force of gravity at the equator as 1 to 229; the excess of the force of gravity in the latitude of Paris will be to the force of gravity at the equator as 1 11334⁄20000 to 229, or as 5667 to 2290000. And therefore the whole forces of gravity in those places will be one to the other as 2295667 to 2290000. Wherefore since the lengths of pendulums vibrating in equal times are as the forces of gravity, and in the latitude of Paris, the length of a pendulum vibrating seconds is 3 Paris feet, and 8½ lines, or rather because of the weight of the air, 85⁄9 lines, the length of a pendulum vibrating in the same time under the equator will be shorter by 1,087 lines. And by a like calculus the following table is made.
|Length of the
|Measure of one degree|
in the meridian.
By this table, therefore, it appears that the inequality of degrees is so small, that the figure of the earth, in geographical matters, may be considered as spherical; especially if the earth be a little denser towards the plane of the equator than towards the poles.
Now several astronomers, sent into remote countries to make astronomical observations, have found that pendulum clocks do accordingly move slower near the equator than in our climates. And, first of all, in the year 1672, M. Richer took notice of it in the island of Cayenne; for when, in the month of August, he was observing the transits of the fixed stars over the meridian, he found his clock to go slower than it ought in respect of the mean motion of the sun at the rate of 2′ 28″ a day. Therefore, fitting up a simple pendulum to vibrate in seconds, which were measured by an excellent clock, he observed the length of that simple pendulum; and this he did over and over every week for ten months together. And upon his return to France, comparing the length of that pendulum with the length of the pendulum at Paris (which was 3 Paris feet and 83⁄5 lines), he found it shorter by 1¼ line.
Afterwards, our friend Dr. Halley, about the year 1677, arriving at the island of St. Helena, found his pendulum clock to go slower there than at London without marking the difference. But he shortened the rod of his clock by more than the 1⁄8 of an inch, or 1½ line; and to effect this, be cause the length of the screw at the lower end of the rod was not sufficient, he interposed a wooden ring betwixt the nut and the ball.
Then, in the year 1682, M. Varin and M. des Hayes found the length of a simple pendulum vibrating in seconds at the Royal Observatory of Paris to be 3 feet and 85⁄9 lines. And by the same method in the island of Goree, they found the length of an isochronal pendulum to be 3 feet and 65⁄9 lines, differing from the former by two lines. And in the same year, going to the islands of Guadaloupe and Martinico, they found that the length of an isochronal pendulum in those islands was 3 feet and 6½ lines.
After this, M. Couplet, the son, in the month of July 1697, at the Royal Observatory of Paris, so fitted his pendulum clock to the mean motion of the sun, that for a considerable time together the clock agreed with the motion of the sun. In November following, upon his arrival at Lisbon, he found his clock to go slower than before at the rate of 2′ 13″ in 24 hours. And next March coming to Paraiba, he found his clock to go slower than at Paris, and at the rate 4′ 12″ in 24 hours; and he affirms, that the pendulum vibrating in seconds was shorter at Lisbon by 2½ lines, and at Paraiba, by 3⅔ lines, than at Paris. He had done better to have reckoned those differences 1⅓ and 25⁄9: for these differences correspond to the differences of the times 2′ 13″ and 4′ 12″. But this gentleman's observations are so gross, that we cannot confide in them.
In the following years, 1699, and 1700, M. des Hayes, making another voyage to America, determined that in the island of Cayenne and Granada the length of the pendulum vibrating in seconds was a small matter less than 3 feet and 6½ lines; that in the island of St. Christophers it was 3 feet and 6¾ lines; and in the island of St. Domingo 3 feet and 7 lines.
And in the year 1704, P. Feuillé, at Puerto Bello in America, found that the length of the pendulum vibrating in seconds was 3 Paris feet, and only 57⁄12 lines, that is, almost 3 lines shorter than at Paris; but the observation was faulty. For afterward, going to the island of Martinico, he found the length of the isochronal pendulum there 3 Paris feet and 510⁄12 lines.
Now the latitude of Paraiba is 6° 38′ south; that of Puerto Bello 9° 33′ north; and the latitudes of the islands Cayenne, Goree, Gaudaloupe, Martinico, Granada, St. Christophers, and St. Domingo, are respectively 4° 55′, 14° 40″, 15° 00′, 14° 44′, 12° 06′, 17° 19′, and 19° 48′, north. And the excesses of the length of the pendulum at Paris above the lengths of the isochronal pendulums observed in those latitudes are a little greater than by the table of the lengths of the pendulum before computed. And therefore the earth is a little higher under the equator than by the preceding calculus, and a little denser at the centre than in mines near the su face, unless, perhaps, the heats of the torrid zone have a little extended the length of the pendulums.
For M. Picart has observed, that a rod of iron, which in frosty weather in the winter season was one foot long, when heated by lire, was lengthened into one foot and ¼ line. Afterward M. de la Hire found that a rod of iron, which in the like winter season was 6 feet long, when exposed to the heat of the summer sun, was extended into 6 feet and ⅔ line. In the former case the heat was greater than in the latter; but in the latter it was greater than the heat of the external parts of a human body; for metals exposed to the summer sun acquire a very considerable degree of heat. But the rod of a pendulum clock is never exposed to the heat of the summer sun, nor ever acquires a heat equal to that of the external parts of a human body; and, therefore, though the 3 feet rod of a pendulum clock will indeed be a little longer in the summer than in the winter season, yet the difference will scarcely amount to ¼ line. Therefore the total difference of the lengths of isochronal pendulums in different climates cannot be ascribed to the difference of heat; nor indeed to the mistakes of the French astronomers. For although there is not a perfect agreement betwixt their observations, yet the errors are so small that they may be neglected; and in this they all agree, that isochronal pendulums are shorter under the equator than at the Royal Observatory of Paris, by a difference not less than 1¼ line, nor greater than 2⅔ lines. By the observations of M. Richer, in the island of Cayenne, the difference was 1¼ line. That difference being corrected by those of M. des Hayes, becomes 1½ line or 1¾ line. By the less accurate observations of others, the same was made about two lines. And this dis agreement might arise partly from the errors of the observations, partly from the dissimilitude of the internal parts of the earth, and the height of mountains; partly from the different heats of the air.
I take an iron rod of 3 feet long to be shorter by a sixth part of one line in winter time with us here in England than in the summer. Because of the great heats under the equator, subduct this quantity from the difference of one line and a quarter observed by M. Richer, and there will remain one line 1⁄12, which agrees very well with 187⁄1000 line collected, by the theory a little before. M. Richer repeated his observations, made in the island of Cayenne, every week for ten months together, and compared the lengths of the pendulum which he had there noted in the iron rods with the lengths thereof which he observed in France. This diligence and care seems to have been wanting to the other observers. If this gentleman's observations are to be depended on, the earth is higher under the equator than at the poles, and that by an excess of about 17 miles; as appeared above by the theory.
PROPOSITION XXI. THEOREM XVII.
That the equinoctial points go backward, and that the axis of the earth, by a nutation in every annual revolution, twice vibrates towards the ecliptic, and as often returns to its former position.
The proposition appears from Cor. 20, Prop. LXVI, Book I; but that motion of nutation must be very small, and, indeed, scarcely perceptible.
PROPOSITION XXII. THEOREM XVIII.
That all the motions of the moon, and all the inequalities of those motions, follow from the principles which we have laid down.
That the greater planets, while they are carried about the sun, may in the mean time carry other lesser planets, revolving about them; and that those lesser planets must move in ellipses which have their foci in the centres of the greater, appears from Prop. LXV, Book I. But then their motions will be several ways disturbed by the action of the sun, and they will suffer such inequalities as are observed in our moon. Thus our moon (by Cor. 2, 3, 4, and 5, Prop. LXVI, Book I) moves faster, and, by a radius drawn to the earth, describes an area greater for the time, and has its orbit less curved, and therefore approaches nearer to the earth in the syzygies than in the quadratures, excepting in so far as these effects are hindered by the motion of eccentricity; for (by Cor. 9, Prop. LXVI, Book I) the eccentricity is greatest when the apogeon of the moon is in the syzygies, and least when the same is in the quadratures; and upon this account the perigeon moon is swifter, and nearer to us, but the apogeon moon slower, and farther from us, in the syzygies than in the quadratures. Moreover, the apogee goes forward, and the nodes backward; and this is done not with a regular but an unequal motion. For (by Cor. 7 and 8, Prop. LXVI, Book I) the apogee goes more swiftly forward in its syzygies, more slowly backward in its quadratures; and, by the excess of its progress above its regress, advances yearly in consequentia. But, contrariwise, the nodes (by Cor. 11, Prop. LXVI, Book I) are quiescent in their syzygies, and go fastest back in their quadratures. Farther, the greatest latitude of the moon (by Cor. 10, Prop. LXVI, Book I) is greater in the quadratures of the moon than in its syzygies. And (by Cor. 6, Prop. LXVI, Book I) the mean motion of the moon is slower in the perihelion of the earth than in its aphelion. And these are the principal inequalities (of the moon) taken notice of by astronomers.
But there are yet other inequalities not observed by former astronomers, by which the motions of the moon are so disturbed, that to this day we have not been able to bring them under any certain rule. For the velocities or horary motions of the apogee and nodes of the moon, and their equations, as well as the difference betwixt the greatest eccentricity in the syzygies, and the least eccentricity in the quadratures, and that inequality which we call the variation, are (by Cor. 14, Prop. LXVI, Book I) in the course of the year augmented and diminished in the triplicate proportion of the sun's apparent diameter. And besides (by Cor. 1 and 2, Lem. 10, and Cor. 16, Prop. LXVI, Book I) the variation is augmented and diminished nearly in the duplicate proportion of the time between the quadratures. But in astronomical calculations, this inequality is commonly thrown into and confounded with the equation of the moon's centre.
PROPOSITION XXIII. PROBLEM V.
To derive the unequal motions of the satellites of Jupiter and Saturn from the motions of our moon.
From the motions of our moon we deduce the corresponding motions of the moons or satellites of Jupiter in this manner, by Cor. 16, Prop. LXVI, Book I. The mean motion of the nodes of the outmost satellite of Jupiter is to the mean motion of the nodes of our moon in a proportion compounded of the duplicate proportion of the periodic times of the earth about the sun to the periodic times of Jupiter about the sun, and the simple proportion of the periodic time of the satellite about Jupiter to the periodic time of our moon about the earth; and, therefore, those nodes, in the space of a hundred years, are carried 8° 24′ backward, or in antecedentia. The mean motions of the nodes of the inner satellites are to the mean motion of the nodes of the outmost as their periodic times to the periodic time of the former, by the same Corollary, and are thence given. And the motion of the apsis of every satellite in consequentia is to the motion of its nodes in antecedentia as the motion of the apogee of our moon to the motion of its nodes (by the same Corollary), and is thence given. But the motions of the apsides thus found must be diminished in the proportion of 5 to 9, or of about 1 to 2, on account of a cause which I cannot here descend to explain. The greatest equations of the nodes, and of the apsis of every satellite, are to the greatest equations of the nodes, and apogee of our moon respectively, as the motions of the nodes and apsides of the satellites, in the time of one revolution of the former equations, to the motions of the nodes and apogee of our moon, in the time of one revolution of the latter equations. The variation of a satellite seen from Jupiter is to the variation of our moon in the same proportion as the whole motions of their nodes respectively during the times in which the satellite and our moon (after parting from) are revolved (again) to the sun, by the same Corollary; and therefore in the outmost satellite the variation does not exceed 5″ 12‴.
PROPOSITION XXIV. THEOREM XIX.
That the flux and reflux of the sea arise from the actions of the sun and moon.
By Cor. 19 and 20, Prop. LXVI, Book I, it appears that the waters of the sea ought twice to rise and twice to fall every day, as well lunar as solar; and that the greatest height of the waters in the open and deep seas ought to follow the appulse of the luminaries to the meridian of the place by a less interval than 6 hours; as happens in all that eastern tract of the Atlantic and Æthiopic seas between France and the Cape of Good Hope; and on the coasts of Chili and Peru, in the South Sea; in all which shores the flood falls out about the second, third, or fourth hour, unless where the motion propagated from the deep ocean is by the shallowness of the channels, through which it passes to some particular places, retarded to the fifth, sixth, or seventh hour, and even later. The hours I reckon from the appulse of each luminary to the meridian of the place; as well under as above the horizon; and by the hours of the lunar day I understand the 24th parts of that time which the moon, by its apparent diurnal motion, employs to come about again to the meridian of the place which it left the day before. The force of the sun or moon in raising the sea is greatest in the appulse of the luminary to the meridian of the place; but the force impressed upon the sea at that time continues a little while after the impression, and is afterwards increased by a new though less force still acting upon it. This makes the sea rise higher and higher, till this new force becoming too weak to raise it any more, the sea rises to its greatest height. And this will come to pass, perhaps, in one or two hours, but more frequently near the shores in about three hours, or even more, where the sea is shallow.
The two luminaries excite two motions, which will not appear distinctly, but between them will arise one mixed motion compounded out of both. In the conjunction or opposition of the luminaries their forces will be conjoined, and bring on the greatest flood and ebb. In the quadratures the sun will raise the waters which the moon depresses, and depress the waters which the moon raises, and from the difference of their forces the smallest of all tides will follow. And because (as experience tells us) the force of the moon is greater than that of the sun, the greatest height of the waters will happen about the third lunar hour. Out of the syzygies and quadratures, the greatest tide, which by the single force of the moon ought to fall out at the third lunar hour, and by the single force of the sun at the third solar hour, by the compounded forces of both must fall out in an intermediate time that aproaches nearer to the third hour of the moon than to that of the sun. And, therefore, while the moon is passing from the syzygies to the quadratures, during which time the 3d hour of the sun precedes the 3d hour of the moon, the greatest height of the waters will also precede the 3d hour of the moon, and that, by the greatest interval, a little after the octants of the moon; and, by like intervals, the greatest tide will fol low the 3d lunar hour, while the moon is passing from the quadratures to the syzygies. Thus it happens in the open sea; for in the mouths of rivers the greater tides come later to their height.
But the effects of the luminaries depend upon their distances from the earth; for when they are less distant, their effects are greater, and when more distant, their effects are less, and that in the triplicate proportion of their apparent diameter. Therefore it is that the sun, in the winter time, being then in its perigee, has a greater effect, and makes the tides in the syzygies something greater, and those in the quadratures something less than in the summer season; and every month the moon, while in the perigee, raises greater tides than at the distance of 15 days before or after, when it is in its apogee. Whence it comes to pass that two highest tides do not follow one the other in two immediately succeeding syzygies.
The effect of either luminary doth likewise depend upon its declination or distance from the equator; for if the luminary was placed at the pole, it would constantly attract all the parts of the waters without any intension or remission of its action, and could cause no reciprocation of motion. And, therefore, as the luminaries decline from the equator towards either pole, they will, by degrees, lose their force, and on this account will excite lesser tides in the solstitial than in the equinoctial syzygies. But in the solstitial quadratures they will raise greater tides than in the quadratures about the equinoxes; because the force of the moon, then situated in the equator, most exceeds the force of the sun. Therefore the greatest tides fall out in those syzygies, and the least in those quadratures, which happen about the time of both equinoxes: and the greatest tide in the syzygies is always succeeded by the least tide in the quadratures, as we find by experience. But, because the sun is less distant from the earth in winter than in summer, it comes to pass that the greatest and least tides more frequently appear before than after the vernal equinox, and more frequently after than before the autumnal.
Moreover, the effects of the luminaries depend upon the latitudes of places. Let ApEP represent the earth covered with deep waters; C its centre; P, p its poles; AE the equator; F any place without the equator; Ff the parallel of the place; Dd the correspondent parallel on the other side of the equator; L the place of the moon three hours before; H the place of the earth directly under it; h the opposite place; K, k the places at 90 degrees distance; CH, Ch, the greatest heights of the sea from the centre of the earth; and CK, Ck, its least heights: and if with the axes Hh, Kk, an ellipsis is described, and by the revolution of that ellipsis about its longer axis Hh a spheroid HPKhpk is formed, this spheroid will nearly represent the figure of the sea; and CF, Cf, CD, Cd, will represent the heights of the sea in the places Ff, Dd. But farther; in the said revolution of the ellipsis any point N describes the circle NM cutting the parallels Ff, Dd, in any places RT, and the equator AE in S; CN will represent the height of the sea in all those places R, S, T, situated in this circle. Wherefore, in the diurnal revolution of any place F, the greatest flood will be in F, at the third hour after the appulse of the moon to the meridian above the horizon; and afterwards the greatest ebb in Q, at the third hour after the setting of the moon; and then the greatest flood in f, at the third hour after the appulse of the moon to the meridian under the horizon; and, lastly, the greatest ebb in Q, at the third hour after the rising of the moon; and the latter flood in f will be less than the preceding flood in F. For the whole sea is divided into two hemispherical floods, one in the hemisphere KHk on the north side, the other in the opposite hemisphere Khk, which we may therefore call the northern and the southern floods. These floods, being always opposite the one to the other, come by turns to the meridians of all places, after an interval of 12 lunar hours. And seeing the northern countries partake more of the northern flood, and the southern countries more of the southern flood, thence arise tides, alternately greater and less in all places without the equator, in which the luminaries rise and set. But the greatest tide will happen when the moon declines towards the vertex of the place, about the third hour after the appulse of the moon to the meridian above the horizon; and when the moon changes its declination to the other side of the equator, that which was the greater tide will be changed into a lesser. And the greatest difference of the floods will fall out about the times of the solstices; especially if the ascending node of the moon is about the first of Aries. So it is found by experience that the morning tides in winter exceed those of the evening, and the evening tides in summer exceed those of the morning; at Plymouth by the height of one foot, but at Bristol by the height of 15 inches, according to the observations of Colepress and Sturmy.
But the motions which we have been describing suffer some alteration from that force of reciprocation, which the waters, being once moved, retain a little while by their vis insita. Whence it comes to pass that the tides may continue for some time, though the actions of the luminaries should cease. This power of retaining the impressed motion lessens the difference of the alternate tides, and makes those tides which immediately succeed after the syzygies greater, and those which follow next after the quadratures less. And hence it is that the alternate tides at Plymouth and Bristol do not differ much more one from the other than by the height of a foot or 15 inches, and that the greatest tides of all at those ports are not the first but the third after the syzygies. And, besides, all the motions are retarded in their passage through shallow channels, so that the greatest tides of all, in some straits and mouths of rivers, are the fourth or even the fifth after the syzygies.
Farther, it may happen that the tide may be propagated from the ocean through different channels towards the same port, and may pass quicker through some channels than through others; in which case the same tide, divided into two or more succeeding one another, may compound new motions of different kinds. Let us suppose two equal tides flowing towards the same port from different places, the one preceding the other by 6 hours; and suppose the first tide to happen at the third hour of the appulse of the moon to the meridian of the port. If the moon at the time of the appulse to the meridian was in the equator, every 6 hours alternately there would arise equal floods, which, meeting with as many equal ebbs, would so balance one the other, that for that day, the water would stagnate and remain quiet. If the moon then declined from the equator, the tides in the ocean would be alternately greater and less, as was said; and from thence two greater and two lesser tides would be alternately propagated towards that port. But the two greater floods would make the greatest height of the waters to fall out in the middle time betwixt both; and the greater and lesser floods would make the waters to rise to a mean height in the middle time between them, and in the middle time between the two lesser floods the waters would rise to their least height. Thus in the space of 24 hours the waters would come, not twice, as commonly, but once only to their great est, and once only to their least height; and their greatest height, if the moon declined towards the elevated pole, would happen at the 6th or 30th hour after the appulse of the moon to the meridian; and when the moon changed its declination, this flood would be changed into an ebb. An example of all which Dr. Halley has given us, from the observations of sea men in the port of Batsham, in the kingdom of Tunquin, in the latitude of 20° 50′ north. In that port, on the day which follows after the passage of the moon over the equator, the waters stagnate: when the moon declines to the north, they begin to flow and ebb, not twice, as in other ports, but once only every day: and the flood happens at the setting, and the greatest ebb at the rising of the moon. This tide increases with the declination of the moon till the 7th or 8th day; then for the 7 or 8 days following it decreases at the same rate as it had increased before, and ceases when the moon changes its declination, crossing over the equator to the south. After which the flood is immediately changed into an ebb; and thenceforth the ebb happens at the setting and the flood at the rising of the moon; till the moon, again passing the equator, changes its declination. There are two inlets to this port and the neighboring channels, one from the seas of China, between the continent and the island of Leuconia; the other from the Indian sea, between the continent and the island of Borneo. But whether there be really two tides propagated through the said channels, one from the Indian sea in the space of 12 hours, and one from the sea of China in the space of 6 hours, which therefore happening at the 3d and 9th lunar hours, by being compounded together, produce those motions; or whether there be any other circumstances in the state of those seas. I leave to be determined by observations on the neighbouring shores.
Thus I have explained the causes of the motions of the moon and of the sea. Now it is fit to subjoin something concerning the quantity of those motions.