Tag Archives: John Herschel

this day in the yesteryear: New York Sun Publishes “The Great Moon Hoax” (1835)

New York Sun Publishes “The Great Moon Hoax” (1835)

“The Great Moon Hoax” was a series of six New York Sun articles discussing the supposed discovery of life on the Moon. The discovery—allegedly made using a massive telescope—was falsely attributed to famed astronomer Sir John Herschel. In the articles, the author claims that unicorns, bipedal beavers, bat-like humanoids, and other fantastic animals inhabit a forest- and ocean-covered Moon. The series was likely intended to boost the paper’s sales and ridicule what contemporary theories? More… Discuss