Login

Username

Password



Not a rebel yet?
CLICK HERE to register.

Forgotten your password?
Request a new one from Orac HERE.

Current User Info

· Lurkers Lurking: 13

· Rebels Active: 0

· Total Rebels: 1,043
· Newest Rebel: Solaris

Login Help

If you are having problems logging in, please bear in mind that if you originally registered at the site before 8th January 2014 and you haven't re-registered since that date your old login details will no longer work. If this is the case, please re-register, preferably with your former username. If you are having trouble with the registration process itself, try looking HERE and HERE for help and advice. If you need further assistance, please do CONTACT us.

Current Poll

Who is your Favourite Guest Rebel?

Avalon - (Project Avalon)
Avalon - (Project Avalon)
23% [29 Votes]

Selma - (Horizon)
Selma - (Horizon)
4% [5 Votes]

Tyce - (Bounty)
Tyce - (Bounty)
14% [18 Votes]

Norm One - (Redemption)
Norm One - (Redemption)
2% [2 Votes]

Bek - (Shadow)
Bek - (Shadow)
6% [8 Votes]

Kasabi - (Pressure Point)
Kasabi - (Pressure Point)
16% [20 Votes]

Hal Mellanby - (Aftermath)
Hal Mellanby - (Aftermath)
17% [22 Votes]

Hunda - (Traitor)
Hunda - (Traitor)
5% [7 Votes]

Deva - (Blake)
Deva - (Blake)
8% [10 Votes]

Other
Other
5% [7 Votes]

Votes: 128
Login to vote.
Started: 09 July 2016

Polls Archive

Forum Activity

Newest Articles

B7 Images

+ Privacy Policy+

In line with the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that came into effect on 25th May 2018, we have updated our Privacy Policy. Click HERE for details.

View Thread

 Print Thread
Planet Names - Major, Prime etc
thewayback7
Is there any rhyme or reason to explain how the writers named planets for Blake's 7? e.g.

- does "major" in Saurian Major indicate there's a nearby Saurian Minor planet?

- does "prime" in Gauda Prime indicate something similar?

Is there some naming convention in sci-fi/astronomy that Blake's 7 writers seem to be following?
 
JustBrad
I presume in each case it refers to the (first) inhabited planet in each system.
 
daro2096
I assumed the names were the names of star systems not planets unless followed by a number like Beckol 2(spelling?).

Is there anything that can be done about the blue background in the comment box? It makes typing very difficult to see.
 
thewayback7
JustBrad wrote:

I presume in each case it refers to the (first) inhabited planet in each system.

That sounds close to the mark. After some googling it seems Prime has been part of science-fiction lingo prior to Blake's 7, going back at least to the 1960's:

https://en.wikipe..._by_medium

It does sound like Prime is a designation within a star system, but I haven't found anything to confirm what that means i.e.

- (first) inhabited planet
- planet closest to the sun
- the homeworld for a species or family
- planet first colonised in a system (using Latin numbering system: the first colony is Prime, the second gets called Secundus, the third Tertius etc)

So maybe Terry Nation used "major" as just another word for "prime".

But at least my main question seems to be answered i.e. prime/major does not necessarily imply a nearby minor sister-planet. Thanks.
Edited by thewayback7 on 11 April 2018 05:19:42
 
thewayback7
Secundus is also used for planet names in science-fiction going back to the sixties:

https://en.wikipe...ce_fiction

https://en.wikipe..._by_medium

So it does seem to be a Latin numbering system for planets within a system, with prime coming from primus.
 
Joe Dredd
I once suggested to someone that Soolin being from both Darlon IV and Gauda Prime could easily be resolved by having GP as the fourth planet in the Darlon system (just as Earth = Sol III). They insisted that being "Prime", GP had to be the planet closest to the sun.
 
thewayback7
Joe Dredd wrote:

I once suggested to someone that Soolin being from both Darlon IV and Gauda Prime could easily be resolved by having GP as the fourth planet in the Darlon system (just as Earth = Sol III). They insisted that being "Prime", GP had to be the planet closest to the sun.

Hmm, so there's no consensus about what prime means.

Where is Darlon IV mentioned? It's the first I've heard of it.

One of my fanfic ideas is a Soolin backstory, so I'm curious.
 
thewayback7
I found Darlon IV mentioned in Liberation: The Unofficial and Unauthorised Guide to Blake's 7:

"SOOLIN
BORN: EARTH
AGE: 25
Parents emigrated to frontier world DARLON IV when Soolin was two years old. The family farmed a Registered Homestead on DARLON IV until it was re-designated an OPEN PLANET on the discovery of vast mineral wealth. Since OPEN PLANET designation suspends all normal law, the murder of Soolin’s family by the enforcers of a mining consortium was not technically a crime. Soolin was eight years old."


Sounds like Gauda Prime to me.

So presumably Darlon IV was not mentioned on TV, but comes from the original script for Rescue, or from Chris Boucher's notes?
Edited by thewayback7 on 11 April 2018 06:12:06
 
Joe Dredd
The blurb in Liberation comes from background information prepared early on to hand out to script writers for S4 (more a sort of series pamphlet than series Bible!).

Some of it was never mentioned elsewhere and/or later contradicted, such as Soolin coming from Darlon IV (shades of Gan being a native of Zephron), the clip guns being made of Argentinium, and the teleport working on programmable chips that slid into the bracelets. It was reprinted several times in early numbers of the B7 Monthly magazine.
 
Dtar
I propose that major is the biggest, prime is the first... In whatever sense.
 
rojkerr1
In Dr Who Caves of Androzani, the two planets in the system are referred to as Major and Minor too, either in terms of relative size or relative importance or population.
 
thewayback7
Dtar wrote:

I propose that major is the biggest, prime is the first... In whatever sense.

Sounds good to me, but it would be nice to get a definite answer on how "prime" was used throughout sci-fi history.
 
thewayback7
rojkerr1 wrote:

In Dr Who Caves of Androzani, the two planets in the system are referred to as Major and Minor too, either in terms of relative size or relative importance or population.

Thanks. It would seem Major can have a different meaning to Prime.

I found Saurian Minor has been used by Big Finish too:

"Saurian Minor. A dead rock in space"


https://www.bigfi...ume-04-738
 
thewayback7
Joe Dredd wrote:

They insisted that being "Prime", GP had to be the planet closest to the sun.

Apparently the planet closest to the sun is generally uninhabitable. Too hot, I presume. If that's true, then the use of Prime throughout sci-fi likely has another meaning.

I rather think Prime refers to the origin of a civilization rather than the first planet of the system, which is generally uninhabited. - From Cardassia with pain 11:28, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

That would be my assumption too, as the inner and outer planets of a solar system are generally uninhabitable, Earth for example would be Sol Prime.--Cyno01 20:04, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

http://memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/TalkPfftrime_planets
 
ZEN1
Servalan once said " You'll rot in a slave pit on Ursa Prime Travis" [Weapon]. Hardly an healthy place, nor civilsed by the sound of it
www.clicksmilies.com/s0105/ernaehrung/food-smiley-010.gif

Nothing like the 1st cuppa tea in the morning
 
thewayback7
ZEN1 wrote:

Servalan once said " You'll rot in a slave pit on Ursa Prime Travis" [Weapon]. Hardly an healthy place, nor civilsed by the sound of it

Yeah, that doesn't favour the "homeworld for a species" or "first colonised planet" interpretation of Prime. Thanks.
 
thewayback7
daro2096 wrote:

I assumed the names were the names of star systems not planets unless followed by a number like Beckol 2(spelling?).

Strangely, this may be closer to the real meaning than anything else so far.

I found a long in-depth look at the planet names in Frank Herbert's Dune (one of the earliest uses of Prime in sci-fi):
http://www.projec...etteer.txt

The gist of it seems to be that Herbert got some of his fictional planet names from real star names e.g. Giedi Prime was named after Alpha Capricorni - a binary star consisting of the pair Giedi Prime and Giedi Secundus. (Capricorni is also known as Algedi or Giedi). Hence Alpha1 Capricorni = Giedi Prime.

If this is true, that a fictional prime planet was named after a real prime star, then that explains why there's no consistency in its use throughout sci-fi, because it made little sense to do so. Apparently, in Dune, the planet was so named in recognition of some historical connection to the star.

And so, in answer to my original questions, Prime and Major may not necessarily imply a nearby minor planet, nor imply the planet's position relative to the sun. Although it's no surprise if sci-fi does sometimes make these implications, because we like to be logical and ordered.

Below is the long text.

http://www.projec...etteer.txt

The Stars and Planets of Frank Herbert's _Dune_: A Gazetteer

By Joseph M. Daniels

Part One: Introduction

I have long had a casual interest in both astronomy and science fiction. So when Frank Herbert's _Dune_ captivated me a few years ago, I decided to take a look at its astronomical references. I thought I would visually observe such of them as I could and try to discover why particular stars were chosen and how planets were named.

I presumed that I would find a fairly straightforward scheme. This error was quickly corrected when I discovered that "Giedi Prime" and "Arrakis" were the names of real stars as well as fictional planets.

I supposed (and continue to do so) that Herbert named some planets after star systems in which important, but usually unspecified, historical events will have taken place. Come to think of it, someone of Muad'dib's time might wonder how a small town in Indiana and a public square in London came to have the same name as a cape in Spain: Trafalgar. Such a person might very well know what happened near the star Alpha1 Capricorni, otherwise Giedi Prime, to cause a planet to be named after it but be ignorant of Lord Nelson's victory.

This appealed to my interest in the historical, more abiding still than my attractions to astronomy and science fiction. So it began to look like a fun project, and indeed it has been. I hope you will find the results interesting...

My "star designations" are chosen using the common method: If Johann Bayer (1572-1625) found the star prominent enough to assign it a Greek letter, then that designation is used. If not, the number assigned by John Flamsteed (1646-1719) is used-where it exists. If all else fails, I use the number given in the Henry Draper Catalogue of Annie Jump Cannon, created in the early part of the twentieth century.

Conventions and Source Citations:

When there are identical star and planet names and the possibility of confusion exists, the star name will be preceded by an "*", and the planet name with an "@". Thus I would write *Arrakis for Mu Draconis and @Arrakis for Dune.

C. The Second Stop: Salusa Secundus

Its planetary name clearly implies that, like @Giedi Prime and @Arrakis, Salusa Secundus was named after a star. Secundus (Latin for "second" ) is a term sometimes used with the lesser of the two components of a binary star. One would expect a "Salusa Prime" somewhere.

A. Giedi Prime (later Gammu)

As I observed at the beginning of this document, @Giedi Prime was named after a star: Alpha1 Capricorni. As also noted before, one can only assume that this was done to commemorate some historical event or relationship unknown to us.

Herbert may have been motivated by another sort of symbolism: The Zodiacal constellation Capricorn is "the goat" and "Giedi" means the "kid of a goat"...

Alpha Capricorni or Algiedi is a complex star, consisting of the optical binary pair *Giedi Prime and Giedi Secundus. The former is yellow-white supergiant at about 543 ly. distance; the latter is a yellow-white giant at about 96 ly. distance. Each has companions and some of these are themselves binary. Perhaps there are up to 9 components in the entire group.

The star system of @Giedi Prime lies, along with Poritrin and Sikun in the constellation Ophiuchus...

As noted above, @ Giedi Prime is the lone planet of 36 Ophiuchi B, the second star of a binary star system.


See also:

https://en.wikipe...apricornus

Alpha Capricorni is a multiple star also known as Algedi or Giedi.

https://en.wikipe...a_Centauri

Alpha Centauri is the system's Bayer designation.

https://en.wikipe...esignation

A Bayer designation is a stellar designation in which a specific star is identified by a Greek letter, followed by the genitive form of its parent.
 
Jump to Forum:
Orac rendered this page in 0.38 seconds
14,752,584 unique visits since 8th January 2014