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[39b] for, because of their simultaneous progress in two opposite directions,1 the motion of the Same, which is the swiftest of all motions, twisted all their circles into spirals and thus caused the body which moves away from it most slowly to appear the nearest.2 And in order that there might be a clear measure of the relative speeds, slow and quick, with which they travelled round their eight orbits, in that circle which is second from the earth God kindled a light which now we call the Sun, to the end that it might shine, so far as possible, throughout the whole Heaven, and that all the living creatures entitled thereto might participate in number, learning it from the revolution of the Same and Similar.


1 i.e., a planet moving along the Ecliptic from W. to E. is at the same time drawn from E. to W. (in the plane of the Equator) by the regular motion of the sphere of the fixed stars (the circle of “the same” which moves at a higher velocity than that of “the other”).

2 i.e.Saturn appears to be nearest to the sphere of the fixed stars in point of velocity. Cf. Laws822 A ff.

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