What is the difference between astronomy and astrology?

The definition of astronomy

Word astronomy comes from the Greek “astron”, which means “star”, and “nomos”, which means “law”. Astronomy is the science of observing the stars, such as the Sun, the Moon, the planets, the comets or the stars. It aims to explain their origin, to understand their evolution and to better understand their different properties, whether physical or chemical. Astronomy also studies their movements in space. This science appeared more than 5,000 years ago, because the first traces of this science date from before antiquity.

Over the centuries there have been many famous astronomers. We take for example Galileo, who was the first to observe the sky with an astronomical telescope, or Copernicus, who discovered that the Earth was not at the center of the universe. It is also one of the only sciences practiced by a large public of passionate amateurs who observe the stars using glasses or telescopes. Some of them have also been able to advance astronomy thanks to their discoveries, by observing new comets for example.

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What is Astrology?

The National Center for Textual and Lexical Resources defines theastrology as being the “science of certain stars considered in their relations between them, in their positions in the signs of the zodiac and the art of interpreting these particular configurations on a certain date, established in a chart of the sky, with a view to determining the someone’s character and to predict the future. Etymologically, the word astrology means “discourse on the stars”.

As a general rule, however, astrology is not considered to be in the realm of science. It is based on a set of beliefs and practices that have no scientific basis for the moment, because no study has been able to provide concrete evidence. Astrology appeared several thousand years ago. Neolithic writings have indeed been found. There are several famous astrologers, from Michel de Nostredame, called Nostradamuswho is said to have predicted great events in history, to Élizabeth Teissier, who has contributed to the growing popularity of astrology in France in recent years.

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The main differences between astronomy and astrology

At first, astronomy is officially considered a science, while astrology is not, which is generally defined as a belief system. Astronomy studies all the celestial objects and the universe by processing physical and scientific data, while astrology is based on the movement of certain stars only, and the way in which these movements influence men. They are also based on a different methodology. Astronomy studies the visible and is based on logic and deduction, while astrology is partly based on intuition. Astronomy and astrology are therefore two totally different practices, even if they have in common the study of the stars and their movements, and they both have many followers!

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What is the difference between astronomy and astrology?

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