Geek Trivia

Which Planet’s Craters Are Named After Artists?

The Only Planet In Our Solar System With An Indeterminate Number Of Moons Is?

Answer: Mercury

If there is one thing scientists of all stripes are fond of, it’s naming conventions. When it comes to naming astronomical bodies and their features clever naming conventions are a big part of the process. In the case of Mercury, the planet closest to our Sun and just as rocky and hot as you would imagine it to be, there are several naming conventions at play.

All the craters on the planet are named after artists–of all sorts including painters, sculptors, musicians, and more–who have made outstanding or fundamental contributions to their discipline. Some of the largest craters on the planet are named after such luminaries as Italian artist Raphael, Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoyevsky, and Greek poet and philosopher Homer.

Other naming conventions used on Mercury include: ridges named after scientists who have contributed to the study of Mercury, depressions named after famous works of architecture, and mountains named after the word “hot” in various languages.