Neptune is the eighth and farthest known planet from the Sun in the Solar System. In the Solar System, it is the fourth-largest planet by diameter, the third-most-massive planet, and the densest giant planet. Neptune is 17 times the mass of Earth and is slightly more massive than its near-twin Uranus, which is 15 times the mass of Earth and slightly larger than Neptune. Neptune orbits the Sun once every 164.8 years at an average distance of 30.1 astronomical units (4.50×109 km). It is named after the Roman god of the sea and has the astronomical symbol ♆, a stylised version of the god Neptune’s trident. Neptune was subsequently observed with a telescope on 23 September 1846 by Johann Galle within a degree of the position predicted by Urbain Le Verrier. Its largest moon, Triton, was discovered shortly thereafter, though none of the planet’s remaining known 13 moons were located telescopically until the 20th century.
The planet’s distance from Earth gives it a very small apparent size, making it challenging to study with Earth-based telescopes. Neptune was visited by Voyager 2, when it flew by the planet on 25 August 1989.
The cosmic voice of Neptune
(NASA Voyager recording)
Shortly after its discovery, Neptune was referred to simply as “the planet exterior to Uranus” or as “Le Verrier’s planet“. The first suggestion for a name came from Galle, who proposed the name Janus. In England, Challis put forward the name Oceanus. Claiming the right to name his discovery, Le Verrier quickly proposed the name Neptune for this new planet, though falsely stating that this had been officially approved by the French Bureau des Longitudes. In October, he sought to name the planet Le Verrier, after himself, and he had loyal support in this from the observatory director, François Arago. This suggestion met with stiff resistance outside France.
The etymology of Latin Neptunus is unclear and disputed. The ancient grammarian Varro derived the name from nuptus i.e. “covering” (opertio), with a more or less explicit allusion to the nuptiae, “marriage of Heaven and Earth“.
Among modern scholars Paul Kretschmer proposed a derivation from neptu – “moist substance”. Similarly Raymond Bloch supposed it might be an adjectival form in no from nuptu, meaning “he who is moist“. Georges Dumézil though remarked words deriving root nep are not attested in languages other than Vedic and Avestan. He proposed an etymology that brings together Neptunus with Vedic and Avestan theonyms Apam Napat, Apam Napá and Old Irish theonym Nechtan, all meaning descendant of the waters. By using the comparative approach the Indo-Iranian, Avestan and Irish figures would show common features with the Roman historicised legends about Neptune. Dumézil thence proposed to derive the nouns from root nepot – “descendant, sister’s son“.
Portrait of Andrea Doria as Neptune
Neptune is one of the only four Roman gods to whom it was appropriate to sacrifice bulls, the other three being Apollo, Mars and Jupiter. The wrong offering would require a piaculum, if due to inadvertency or necessity. The type of the offering implies a stricter connection between the deity and the worldly realm.
Nethuns is the Etruscan name of the god. In the past it has been believed that the Roman theonym derived from Etruscan but more recently this view has been rejected. Nethuns was certainly an important god for the Etruscans. His name is to be found on two cases of the Piacenza Liver, namely case 7 on the outer rim and case 28 on the gall-bladder, (plus once in case 22 along with Tinia). This last location tallies with Pliny the Elder’s testimony that the gall-bladder is sacred to Neptune. Theonym Nethuns recurs eight times on columns VIII, IX and XI of the Liber Linteus (flere, flerchva Nethunsl), requiring offerings of wine.
The mariner of old said to Neptune in a great tempest, “O God! thou mayest save me if thou wilt, and if thou wilt thou mayest destroy me; but whether or no, I will steer my rudder true.
Lux Aurumque (“Light and Gold”, or “Light of Gold”) is a composition in one movement by Eric Whitacre. An American Grammy Award-winning composer and conductor. “Virtual Choir” projects, bringing individual voices from around the globe together into an online choir.
Piano suite by one of the most prominent music figures, French composer Claude Debussy (1890). Debussy commenced the suite in 1890 at age 28, but he did not finish or publish it until 1905.
Composed by Harry Gregson-Williams, a British composer, orchestrator, conductor, and music producer.
Composed by German composer, and big band leader James Last, from same named album Biscaya (1981). He is well known for his ”happy music”. Became an international success in interpretations by Andy Williams and Petula Clark.
The Israeli national anthem (instrumental), written by Naphtali Herz Imber, a Jewish poet from Zolochiv, Ukraine (1877). He wrote the first version of his poem while being hosted as a guest by a Jewish scholar in the city of Iasi, Romania.
Originally published in 1853 as Méditation sur le Premier Prélude de Piano de S. Bach. Performed by Aaron Neville, an American R&B and soul singer.
Song by the American dream pop singer Julee Cruise. The instrumental version of the song, performed by Badalamenti, won a Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance at the 32nd Grammy Awards.
Composed by Greek composer Vangelis, composer of electronic, progressive, ambient, jazz, pop rock, and orchestral music. He is best known for his Academy Award-winning score for the film Chariots of Fire Melodie from Albedo 0.39 and Cosmos.
Composed by Daniel Licht, an American film composer and musician. Licht’s eclectic musical tastes and knack for delivering the appropriate cue made his transition to film scoring inevitable.
Song by Modèle Mécanique. Minimal wave, minimal synth and french.
Brian Eno is an English musician, composer, record producer, singer, and visual artist, known as one of the principal innovators of ambient music.
Instrumental song written for tv series Miami Vice. The Crockett refers to Don Johnson’s character. The song was composed by Jan Hammer.
A music theme from the movie ”A Beautiful Mind”, composed by James Roy Horner, an American composer, conductor, and orchestrator of orchestral and film music. He is noted for the integration of choral and electronic elements in many of his film scores.
From the The Trinity Session is a 1988 album by Cowboy Junkies. Blue Moon Revisited was originally released on ”It Came from Canada”, Vol. 4, a compilation of Canadian independent bands which is both a cover and an original, combining a new song by the band “Blue Moon”.
Song by Irish musician Enya, originally released as the second track on her 1991 album Shepherd Moons. The song mentions the Anemoi (Ancient Greek wind gods): Boreas, Afer Ventus (Africus), Eurus, and Zephyrus.
An instrumental theme written and recorded by Vangelis for the soundtrack of the 1981 film of the same name. “Chariots of Fire” has become somewhat synonymous with the Olympic Games. It was the official theme for the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo.
Accordion and piano driven music of Yann Tiersen. Soundtrack from the movie ”Amélie”. Yann Tiersen is a French musician. Recognized by distinctive sound, use of a large variety of instruments; primarily the guitar, synthesizer or violin together with other.
Originally a yiddish poem (lullaby) by Itzik Manger. The title means “On the Road Stands a Tree.” It tells the story of a boy who wants to become a bird so he can comfort a lonely tree during the winter, but his mother is worried that he’ll freeze in the cold weather.
From album Everything is Wrong, the third studio album by American electronica musician Moby, released in 1995. Everything is Wrong was released with a limited edition bonus disc of ambient music.
The Red Carpet is an original soundtrack song from World of Goo video game, composed by Kyle Gabler.
Composed and recorded by Irish singer Enya. Enya donated the earnings from the sale of that single to the Uniform Firefighters Association’s Widows’ and Children’s Fund to help the families of fire fighters in the aftermath of 9/11.
Jerusalem of Gold (ירושלים של זהב) is Israeli song written by Naomi Shemer in 1967. The original song described the Jewish people’s 2000-year longing to return to Jerusalem. Shemer added a final verse after the Six-Day War to celebrate Jerusalem’s re-unification.
Hans Zimmer is a German film composer and music producer and he has composed music for over 150 films. Zimmer’s works are notable for integrating electronic music sounds with traditional orchestral arrangements. Named on the list of Top 100 Living Geniuses.
Mike Volpe professionally known as Clams Casino, is an American hip hop producer. Clams Casino’s official debut EP, Rainforest, was released in 2011. I’m God is track from the television movie Lost in the New York (1989).
Berry Sakharof (Hebrew: ברי סחרוף) is an Israeli rock guitarist, songwriter and singer. Sakharof is one of Israel’s most popular and critically acclaimed musicians. He is nicknamed “the prince of Israeli rock”.
ויכלו השמים והארץ וכל צבאם. ויכל אלהים ביום השביעי מלאכתו אשר עשה. וישבת ביום השביעי מכל מלאכתו אשר עשה. ויברך אלהים את יום השביעי ויקדש אותוכי בו שבת מכל מלאכתו אשר ברא אלהים לעשות
This is the instrumental version of the song “The Way” originally featured on the album The Way. Music composed, orchestrated, and mixed by Zack Hemsey. Audio mastered by Lou Hemsey @ Lou Hemsey Music and Film.
Electronic transcription of Henry Purcell’s Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary, composed in 1695, for the procession of Queen Mary’s cortège through London en route to Westminster Abbey. A Clockwork Orange soundtrack.
Piyut for Havdala service famous throughout great Sephardic Jewish Communities of the Balkans. Musicians are Stefan Sablic – vocals, Elad Gabbay – kanun, Srdjan Djordjevic – doublebass, Shira utfila.
Triarii is a martial industrial and dark ambient music group from Germany.
The lyrics for the song are taken from Psalm 137:5-6, saying: If I Forget Thee Jerusalem.
The Belly of an Architect is written and directed by Peter Greenaway, featuring original music by Glenn Branca and Wim Mertens.