planetography n.

the study of the geography or physical features of planets

OED records the broader sense ‘the branch of knowledge that deals with the planets; a treatise on or description of the planets’ from the 1730s.

  • 1941 E. E. Smith Second Stage Lensmen in Astounding Science-Fiction Nov. 33/2 page image Edward E. Smith bibliography

    All the various Boards and Offices and Bureaus concerned with space, astronomy, astrogation and planetography.

  • 1955 P. Anderson Long Way Home in Astounding Science Fiction Apr. 39/1 Poul Anderson bibliography

    Spent a hundred years external time knocking around, till I got a chance to make a comeback. Planetography’s a sort of hobby with me, which is the only reason I come to your parties, Valti, you kettle-bellied old fraud. Tell me, captain, did you ever touch at Procyon?

  • 1960 Analog Science Fact & Fiction Oct. 33/1

    Got to know enough about it through an elementary planetography.

  • 1974 L. Niven & J. Pournelle Mote in God’s Eye (1975) iii. xxvi. 244 Larry Niven Jerry Pournelle bibliography

    The physical features of Mote Prime are of some interest, particularly to ecologists concerned with the effects of intelligent life on planetography.

  • 1982 I. Asimov Foundation's Edge (1983) vi. 85 Isaac Asimov

    Out beyond, eight parsecs away, was Anacreon, the nearest largest planet… You know its position relative to Terminus and the Galactic core; you've studied its planetography and history.

  • 1997 J. A. Gardner Expendable (1997) iv. 68 James Alan Gardner

    His programming skills were at least as good as mine, and his planetography intuition was superb.

  • 2011 J. Lake Long Way Home in Year’s Best Science Fiction 29 (2012) 285 page image Jay Lake bibliography

    His knowledge of local planetography was poor—it simply hadn’t been important.


Research requirements

antedating 1941

Earliest cite

"Doc" Smith, in Astounding

Research History
Malcolm Farmer submitted a 1955 cite from Poul Anderson's "The Long Way Home".
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 2011 cite from Jay Lake.

Last modified 2021-03-12 02:44:30
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.