The spacecraft New Horizons flew by Pluto (or is flying by, rather) after a long nine year journey. We finally have clear images of this
planet dwarf planet with more to come over the next few days (if all goes well). Something to be really excited for! I still remember the day the mission launched… The power of math and science are amazing to be able to pull off such a feat that took over nine years of flight time and likely much more of planning. However, to keep this relevant to this portfolio/blog, just some very brief trivia.
So what is Pluto called in Japanese? The answer is Meiousei 冥王星 (Lit. “Dark King’s Star”) which was coined by Hoei Nojiri as a way to “localize” the name “Pluto” to Japanese speakers. As you may know, Pluto is the Roman god of the underworld (their version of Hades), and so this seemed to be the best way to get that name over.
It must have been successful, as China, Korea, and Vietnam adapted the name and use it to refer to the dwarf planet as well. That is a significant chunk of the world’s population! So now if you ever see “Meiousei” or the characters 冥王星 (which no doubt will be on the news now and for a few days), you know what they’re referring to!
The more you know!