The “Great Conjunction” will finally take place on the winter solstice’s night. In 1226, about 800 years ago, two of the planets visibly aligned themselves in the sky at night, it was a conjunction between Saturn and Jupiter. In that rare event, the planets seemed extremely close to each other having an apparent width of 1/15 part of the Moon’s circumference. The event took place on 4th March 1226, some months before Assisi’s Francis died. It completed 20 years of reign by Genghis Khan. It was one year before the death of Genghis Khan in 1227.
Earlier Appearance Of The Great Conjunction
While 1226 being the last moment when this conjunction between Jupiter and Saturn happened, it hasn’t happened for the last time yet. Conjunctions between Jupiter and Saturn happen in a circle of 19.6 years. Due to the angle of the orbit movement of Saturn(2.5 degrees) and Jupiter(1.3 degrees), the two planets meet in 19.6 years when they will move at around 4 degrees distance from each other.
Therefore, it will be rarer when a conjunction of less than 1 degree will take place. In 2020 a conjunction equal to one-tenth part of 1 degree, which is a close encounter of the rarest variety called the Great Conjunction will unfold before our eyes. To find this type of great conjunction, one needs to revisit the 17th century. In 1623’s summer, Galileo was enjoying his telescope, made around 14 years ago, in 1609. There was planet conjunction happening at that time which Galileo was unaware of.
In 2020, one can see this rare spectacle for the next few weeks. If one looks at the night sky every day, one can notice the gradual closeness of the planets each evening. While this conjunction will take place in 2060 and 2040, they will not be so visibly close until 15th March 2080.