What Year Was Mars Discovered?


Quick Answer

There is neither an exact year nor person associated with the discovery of Mars. The reason for this is that Mars is a very bright planet that is observable even without telescopes. Because of this, ancient civilizations that existed thousands of years ago were aware of Mars.

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Full Answer

This planet's name comes from the Roman god of war. Through the centuries, different scientists have discovered different features associated with Mars. In 1659, Christian Huygens observed a dark spot on Mars' surface, which was later called Syrtis Major. In 1877, Giovanni Schiaparelli observed what he believed to be canals on Mars' surface and claimed that they were constructed by intelligent beings. In this same year, the two moons of Mars, which are Deimos and Phobos, were discovered by Asaph Hall.

Since the 1960s, different spacecrafts have traveled to Mars to study its surface and environment. In 1971, the volcano Olympia Mons was detected by the spacecraft Mariner 9.

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