The fascinating origins of the Moon's crater names
For whom are lunar impact craters named?
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It was the Italian astronomer Galileo who in 1609 first turned his telescope towards the Moon to observe that far-from-perfect sphere; our nearest satellite was textured with numerous mountains and cup-like depressions. These roughly circular, excavated holes were quickly called craters, probably after kratēr, a Greek vessel used to mix wine and water.
The International Astronomical Union currently recognizes 9,137 craters, of which 1,675 have been dated. Most have also been given names. But after whom are these lunar impact craters named for?
Click through and discover the eponyms for some of the Moon's most prominent craters.
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