The Discovery of Neptune – A mini-Drama of Hazy Misperception & Heated Debate

The real and for true discoverer of Neptune - Urbaine Le Verrier.
Urbain Le Verrier – Neptune’s rightful discoverer


The second furthest planet in our Solar System astrologically rules over some of the trickiest and most confusing areas of human life – deception, spirituality, charity, addiction, just to name a hazy few.  In short, Neptune oversees anything dealing with the intangible and of UN-reality itself, and as we shall soon see even the watery planet’s discovery is steeped in confusion since it is an astronomical event based in the intangible and surrounded with misperception.

When you’re an astrologer, it’s assumed anything regarding the Watery Planet is confusing at best and almost never has a standard, “accepted by all” conclusion – ESPECIALLY its discovery.

Not only is Neptune’s discovery not universally accepted by all, its rightful discoverer is still a topic of heated debate to this very day.

When You Say “Discovered”, Do You Actually Mean Discovered?

Keeping in mind that Neptune’s overall essence has a murky quality which is anything but clear, over the span of a few centuries various people have stumbled upon the existence of the watery planet without realizing it. Remarkably, although each person deduced every correct portion of the astronomical formula where the grand total at the end of the “=” was the discovery of the planet itself, for various reasons ranging from mistaken identity to outright distraction, none took that final step of follow through and either abandoned or ignored their efforts which initially led them to Neptune’s watery door step.

A source of minor debate regarding one of those discoverers, who by far was the first person to technically execute every correct step leading to planetary discovery without actually saying the words, “I think I discovered a planet.”, was the one who had the most concrete proof of Neptune’s existence AND all his findings were made without the assistance of a telescope.

Galileo & Neptune – Hey, Was That A Planet? Nah, Couldn’t Be!

Galileo Galilei
Galileo Galilei

A smaller portion of discovery debaters insist that Neptune’s existence was verified over two centuries earlier than its official discovery date by a man born under the sign whose domain he is accredited with, the father of modern science, Aquarian Galileo Galilei. On December 28th, 1612, Galileo, for all intensive purposes, pin-pointed Neptune’s exact positioning in the sky, but because of the watery planet’s close proximity to Jupiter during that time of year along with it newly beginning a cycle of retrograde motion that very same night, the astronomer mistook the mighty planet to be a fixed star.  Regardless of making thorough drawings of that particular wintery night’s sky, Galileo focused his attentions elsewhere and never gave his virtual discovery of a planet’s work a second thought.

The Good, The Badly Distracted, & The Ugly Crybaby

Moving 231 years further down the cosmic pike, a convergence in the time and space continuum occurred between two men, each independently hypothesizing that something was off with the orbit of that recently discovered planet, Uranus, beginning in the year 1843. From the seeds of these 2 genius minds whose outer shells were comprised of nothing but intangible mathematical hypotheses, 2 other men of science were thrust onto the world’s stage based on their association and individual work with the intellectual leaps of faith of the original two, leading to the night of the watery planet’s observational discovery on September 23rd, 1846. All 4 people were born under 3 of the 4 mutable signs, Gemini, Sagittarius, and the sign which Neptune rules over, Pisces.

John Couch Adams
John Couch Adams

Gemini John Couch Adams began the chain reaction of planetary discovery in England in 1843, using data that had already been established regarding the erratic orbit of Uranus. In the mid-nineteenth century if a person had a burning hunch about a heavenly body, one had to begin the tedious and time consuming process of making official “requests” versus taking a spin to one’s local Observatory to verify their findings with the latest high powered telescope. When you were an official subject of the United Kingdom (aka a Brit) in 1843, one had to honorably ask in the most flowery language for the “Astronomer Royal” to verify your findings as well as request the latest and greatest astronomical updates which had occurred during the 100 or so years which passed while waiting for an official response via 19th century snail mail.

James Challis
James Challis

With the Astronomer Royal being the astronomical authority in all of Great Britain, he was the final determinant as to who did what work and provided whom with whatever astronomical information was most pressing at the time. Since Adams was a “commoner” and not familiar with the proper path of request for royal astronomical assistance, he asked his Sagittarian buddy, James Challis, who took over the job of director of the Royal Observatory in Cambridge when his boss, Leo Sir George Airy became Astronomer Royal in 1835 to mention Adams’ ideas to his former boss in order to begin correspondence between Couch and Airy.



Sir George Airy
Sir George Airy, 7th Astronomer Royal to Great Britain from 1835-1881

Although a formal and official gateway of communication was built between Adams and Airy, the dynamic between these two major players cannot be categorized as anything BUT Neptunian! Both may have thought they had a working acquaintanceship with each other, but allow Brad to clarify: There was no relationship between Adams and Airy, it simply didn’t exist. The two men are always associated together by default whenever there is debate over the discovery of Neptune, and I actually think both men deceived themselves into thinking they had some sort of working relationship, but the two never met and any kind of direct communication between them was mysteriously thwarted.

Being a Gemini, Adams’ mind had revved into a hyperactive frenzy over his initial deductive work regarding Uranus’ orbit.  However, when Airy first replied to Adams and asked in more than one letter for further information on his Uranian orbital theories, the Astronomer Royal’s requests were ignored. In quintessential Neptunian “I’m just going to act like it doesn’t exist” fashion, Sir Airy’s inquiries were never addressed as if the Astronomer Royal had never asked Adams for anything to begin with.

Years after the Neptunian discovery wars had ebbed, John Couch Adams was asked why Airy’s multiple requests were blatantly ignored. His reply is so thoroughly Neptunian, since it is completely matter of fact with an implied assumption that his actions were above reproach. Adams answered that his lack of response was due to him summing up the Astronomer Royal’s requests as “trivial” and not worth acknowledging. By the way, if you ever want to perform mental torture on someone born beneath the sign of the twins – ignore what a Gemini says, it’s tantamount to negating their very existence, since Geminis apply the most worth to their words and communications. Test my little theory – next time you’re on the phone with one of your Gemini friends or relatives, hang up on them while they’re in mid-sentence, you’ll see what I mean.

The volley of the Neptunian “communication? what communication?” game of negation between Sir George and John Couch Adams resembled a tennis match comprised solely of serving faults at Wimbledon, since Sir George served up his own version of information negation right back into Adams’ court.

The Astronomer Royal never acknowledges Adams’ findings.

When push comes to scientific shove, John Couch Adams deserves the credit of starting the whole process of discovering a trans-Uranian planet by mathematically theorizing the irregular nature of Uranus’ orbit was more than likely being caused by the gravitational pull of a larger heavenly body nearly two years BEFORE a soon-to-be-introduced Frenchman theorized his similar, yet independent hypothesis. Even when the very real and threatening Neptunian competition of Urbaine Le Verrier approached Sir Airy about inputting his mathematical coordinates at the Observatory at Cambridge in order to find the location of of what he insisted was a new planet, the Astronomer Royal conveniently forgot to mention that not only had Adams deduced similar mathematical findings prior to Le Verrier’s, but that John Couch Adams even existed at all. Here we see one of Neptune’s favorite tools of confusion – deception.

Non-acknowledgement of his truly ground breaking work drove Adams’ Geminian impatience into such a frenzy, he felt driven to personally visit Sir Airy’s office to hand deliver the calculations which he originally intimated in his letters of introduction to the Astronomer Royal. Things become incredibly Neptunian for Adams when he was curtly told that Sir Airy was “unavailable” and again when the scenario was repeated when Adams attempts a second visit to speak to a very uncurious George a few weeks later. The Gemini genius who had no problem negating other people’s communications is crestfallen when his request to hold audience with the Astronomer Royal is negated twice as if he never made the effort to see Sir George to begin with. All Adams can do is leave a hard copy of his mathematical hypothesis with one of the Astronomer Royal’s secretaries and hope for the best.

Meanwhile, over in France………..

Urbaine Le Verrier Discovers Neptune
A painting depicting Urbain Le Verrier discovering the planet Neptune by Edmond Dupain ironically commissioned in 1888 by the place which prevented him from using their facilities to discover the planet, the Paris Observatory. According to Dupain, from his artistic perspective Johann Galle is the only member of the debated discoverers that’s alotted any kind of credit, given the German astronomer is in the general direction of Le Verrier’s pointed French superhero-ish finger in the upper right hand corner with his back turned while looking in a telescope doing the “discovery of a planet” process by actual observation.

While the passive aggressive mushroom cloud of miscommunication expanded between Adams and Airy, a Frenchman was mathematically deducing that all was not c’est magnifique with the orbital path of the planet whose name his people thankfully did not constantly feel the need to reduce to potty humor. Piscean Urbain Le Verrier independently deduced the same mathematical hypothesis Adams had conceived a few years earlier, but with a smidge more effort by publishing his thoughts in June of 1846.

Simulataneously skimming across the English Channel…….

Who should be perusing Le Verrier’s findings whilst sitting on the royal astronomical throne but the Astronomer Royal himself. Realizing that a race had officially begun with not a second to spare in the impending discovery of a new planet, Sir George summoned his former underling, a certain Sagittarian you may be already acquainted with, James Challis, to drop everything and scour the summer evening skies so that England could win the credit for discovering the latest and greatest planet known to humanity. John Couch Adams isn’t asked nor even considered to assist Challis with the fruitless frenzy of blindly stabbing into outer space in the hopes of finding a planet 17x larger than Earth. Adams, Adams who?

Unfortunately, if you ask a mutable signed person to drop everything for the purpose of focusing on a single task of the most all encompassing critical importance, they’re still going to manage doing said critical task while simultaneously riding a unicycle while at the same time juggling some wine bottles along with a few Ginsu knives for a little thrill factor.

The Brits insist to this day that over the course of those two summer months in 1846, James Challis observed Neptune not just once but four times, but failed to make the proper identification due to his “lack of diligence”. Challis whinily explained why this occurred in his letters of apology to Airy afterwards. Per Challis, the planetary prize of discovering Neptune was blundered due to the curse of many a Sagittarian – distraction:

“I have been greatly mortified to find that my observations would have shewn me the planet in the early part of August if I had only discussed them. … I delayed doing this … chiefly because I was making a grand effort to reduce the vast numbers of comet observations which I have accumulated and this occupied the whole of my time.”

Being ruled by the planet that revels in telling “the guppy who ends up being the great white shark who got away” tall tale, Jupiter, I must admit I find the regretful sob story of retrospect bad enough, but insisting that Challis came across the planet numerous times over only ends up looking like a big ole’ bowl of sour grapes peppered with some very generous portions of poor loser and doused on top with WAY too much Jupiterian exaggeration. (Brad just said the Sag dude pretty much lied.)

Logging In Lateness and Lightning

Snobishness isn’t just for Brits, boys and girls. There have been rumored cases of it among the French as well, cross my heart with Neptune’s Triton! If John Couch Adams was perceived to be a snob by his fellow Brits, when the race for Neptune’s discovery commenced, Urbain Le Verrier was seen as Lord King Snob among his fellow countrymen, and that’s saying a lot, given that 8 out of 10 commoners consider France to be the birthplace of the stereotypical snob. Once again, I must interject by playing Le Advocate de Devil, by stating many Pisceans are often mistakenly perceived to be the most obnoxious of snobs, when in reality they are desperately trying to cover up their intense shyness and paralyzing fear of having to interact with those they don’t know well.

You say stuck up elitist, I say shy water sign with an inherent lack of social skills, the French intelligentsia called the whole Neptunian thing off no matter how anyone interpreted Le Verrier’s caustic behavior. Realizing the British were coming and now were surpassing all of his efforts by frenzily searching for the missing planet he had independently deduced, Urbaine Le Verrier desperately sought assistance from his countrymen, garnering no help whatsoever from any of his fellow French citizens.  It was here the mathematician realized he had no other choice than to seek help from the ethnic group that wielded efficiency like a deadly weapon against any kind of Neptunian confusion – the Germans.

Johanne Galle
Johan Galle

This particular portion of the discovery connection displays Neptune’s chaotic influence over the motion of time, ranging from the most painfully slow of snail’s paces to a speed more brilliantly fast than lightning.

In the late spring of 1845, German Gemini astronomer, Johan Galle, finished his Ph.D. thesis on meridian transits of stars and planets of which he sent a copy to Le Verrier, who at the time was the authority regarding celestial physics.

Over a year passed.

Be it the extra number of holidays taken by the Parisian post, or most likely Le Verrier temporarily emerging from his Piscean space case fog to actually notice the physical presence of Galle’s paper, the Frenchman sent back an obscenely overdue reply to Galle, who happened to work at the Berlin Observatory.  Along with critiquing his thesis paper, Le Verrier also snuck in a proposal if Galle would be at all interested in checking out this little idea he came up with regarding the presence of some planet or other.

A little side note, while in Deutschland I have personally witnessed Germans become FURIOUS over a train being 3 minutes late, the efficiency of time is THAT big a cultural deal in Germany.

It appeared that Galle logged in the time of everything he did, which adds so much to how totally confusing Neptune can be with the passage of time. The German logs in receiving Le Verrier’s bizarrely late, but tangibly received response on the 18th of September, 1846.

For all you Pisceans who are habitually late and say you can’t help it, things change mighty quickly when you Fish Kids want something bad enough. Le Verrier must have practically sprinted to the Paris Post Office upon receiving Galle’s prompt response agreeing to investigate his mathematical hypothesis, given the fact Galle logs in receiving the Frenchman’s reply containing the coordinates which specified the location of a possible new planet on the morning of September the 23rd, 1846.

Besides having his people’s cultural demand for efficiency within his genes, Galle had the mental and physical speed only someone born beneath the Mercury ruled sign of Gemini could possess. Johan Galle worked at the Berlin Observatory, but was not in charge of it. Not only did he have to ask permission to be allowed to use the German observatory’s telescopes, approval needed to be given for the purpose of his request, which was denied in the late morning hours of the 23rd due to the scientific community highly doubting anything like the planet Neptune could even exist at that time.

Immediately after being given refusal of his initial request, Galle boomeranged back yet another inquiry of permission and within the span of a few daylight hours from receiving Le Verrier’s coordinates by mail which theorized a planet should be at the 26th degree in the sign of Aquarius that morning, was allowed authorization to use the Berlin Obervatory’s 9-inch Fraunhofer refractor telescope to verify the Frenchman’s hypothesis on that very evening of September 23rd, 1846.

Heinrich d'Arrest
Heinrich d’Arrest

Over the course of that momentous September day, a student of Galle’s was asked to assist with the relaying of the evening sky’s coordinates, Cancerian Heinrich d’Arrest. D’Arrest made a suggestion to Galle that was simple, efficient, and karmicly profound. He asked to compare their observations with the positions recorded against a very recently made drawing of the night sky called the Hora XXI star chart. When the sky finally darkened to an acceptable level of observation on the evening of September 23rd, 1846, Galle moved the telescopic lens to the pinpoint area of the heavens which translated to Le Verrier’s coordinates. He then called out the coordinates to d’Arrest, who checked them against the star chart.

First attempt – Nothing.

Galle then adjusted the lens by one degree, to which he breathtakingly observed an 8th-magnitude star. When Galle called out its position, d’Arrest exclaimed, “That star is not on the map!“.

The discovery of the planet Neptune technically occurred in under 20 minutes.

To clarify, the countries that have wreaked the most havoc by war throughout the history of Western Civilization, namely England, France, and Germany, are all ruled by the sign overseen by the planet named after the God of War, Aries.

Use your imagination to conjure up the battles of debate that quickly ensued over which scientist, and vastly more importantly, which country that scientist hailed from, deserved the laurel prize of staking claim as the discoverer of this newly found planet after the evening of September 23rd, 1846 and still continue to this very day.

Germany said they found it, then they discovered it.

France said they told Germany where to look.

England told France they came up with the whole thing to begin with.

And so on, and so on, and so on. What must be emphasized is none of the sparring ever occurred between any of the actual core players involved with the discovery of Neptune. Undisputed credit went to Urbain Le Verrier as the discoverer of the newest member of Man’s Solar System.

This Planet Shall Hereby Be Known as: “The Planet Exterior To Uranus”

Urbain Le Verrier was approached to name the planet he had mathematically discovered. Many say his first attempt was embarrassingly uncreative, I say it’s thoroughly Neptunian – “The Planet Exterior To Uranus”. For a person who came from a culture that frowned upon any kind of poo poo jokes associated with the planet that was discovered before this one, Uranus, the Pisces’ first naming attempt certainly wouldn’t have helped things in that vein. Brad shudders to think how beyond miserable his world would be if everyone agreed upon Le Verrier’s space case Piscean first choice of a name for his discovery, which would be the butt of every Uranus joke already out there.

When Le Verrier was told to go back to the drawing board, his second naming attempt was certainly acceptable, but too controversial. Professor Haley had just discovered that new comet and named it after himself, why can’t this planet now be called “Le Verrier’s Planet”? Thank Neptune for the controversy amid the chaos!

John Singleton Copley The Return of Neptune
“The Return of Neptune” by John Singleton Copley, 1754

Three times a winner, folks – and we have NO IDEA why, but out of sheer frustration for his first two picks being rejected, Le Verrier impatiently said to just call it “Neptune” and be done with it.

Amid the din of all the Neptunian confusion and haze, the karmic clarity emerged. For at the same time that Le Verrier pulled the name Neptune out of the air, our distracted Sagittarian friend across the mini-pond was being asked what HE would name this new planet being that he actually observed it first without realizing it, to which James Challis proposed the name, “Oceanus”, a lesser Roman water god.

This new planet was clearly of a watery nature.

The Astrological & Numerological Significance Behind The Discovery of Neptune

Astrologically, there is no doubt as to who deserves credit for the controversial discovery of Neptune for reasons that are both obvious and powerfully esoteric. A significant core of the scientific community unarguably gives credit to the man who mathematically deduced Neptune’s location and was off by 1 degree.

But even here the Neptunian fog needs to be lifted.

Urbain Le Verrier’s calculations are believed to have been the slightest bit off, but when looking at an Ephemeris for the calendar year 1846 along with Galle’s loggings the Piscean’s hypothesis was exactly correct given that Neptune was indeed located at 26 degrees of Aquarius on the day he hurriedly replied to Galle’s letter.

The planet had moved one degree in the time it took for the mail to leave France and arrive in Germany 5 days later.

Of all the key players associated with the watery planet’s observational discovery, only one was born under the sign which Neptune rules over – Urbain Le Verrier. When I verified the birth and death dates of each of the men involved behind the controversy of the discovery of Neptune, I was stupefied in a most Neptunian way when I came upon the Piscean’s.

Urbain Le Verrier
Born March 11th, 1811.**

Died September 23rd, 1877.

Neptune re-entered the sign of its rulership for the first time in recorded history as well as made its first complete orbit since its discovery over the course of 2011, a year which marked the 200th anniversary of Urbain Le Verrier’s birth. The Universe clearly put an end to the debate of Neptune’s rightful human discoverer by marking a man born beneath the sign ruled by the watery planet who found the planet of the intangible through the very intangible method of mathematical deduction.  As if that weren’t karmicly enough, that same man exited from this plane of existence on the exact date his planet was observationally discovered – September the 23rd.

Speaking of September 23rd

The discovery of Neptune’s existence fits right in beneath the domain which that planet rules over astrologically, namely confusion, but your undaunted astrologer discovered that just like that planet’s surface, diamond-like gems of astrological clarity were a mere hair’s length’s distance if one was willing to investigate what lay just underneath the atmosphere of hazy misconception.

This journey of Neptunian discovery began two centuries prior to the observational discovery of our chaotic planet in question. If conditions had been slightly different, Neptune would have been discovered in the early 17th century by the man whom we attribute modern science to – Galileo. One of the main reasons why Neptune was both overlooked as well as drew negative reactions from those within the scientific community prior to its discovery was the belief that a heavenly body of significance would never be found among fixed stars.

If we take the thread of each key player’s astrological sign’s quality, and follow it through the labrynth of confusion through the centuries, we come to a full circle completion at the time of Neptune’s shocking discovery in 1846.

Galileo begins the debated trek. He was born under the fixed sign of Aquarius and correctly finds Neptune, but confuses it as a “fixed” star.

The quality of fixed continues as the force of inhibition behind the discovery of Neptune when the Astronomer Royal, Sir George Airy, born beneath the polar opposite fixed sign of Galileo’s, Leo, ignores John Couch Adams’ initial mathematical hypothesis, assuming it wouldn’t amount to much given the held consensus that no other planets existed beyond the orbit of Uranus.

The quality of fixed tends to hold on longest to anything pre-established. The astrological quality which Neptune’s fluid essence could only be housed under is that of multi-dimensional change, Mutable.

With the exception of one, the key players behind the discovery of Neptune were all born under mutable signs – beginning with Gemini John Couch Adams, then Sagittarian James Challis and ending with Gemini Johann Galle, to Neptune’s initial source, Piscean Urbain Le Verrier.

The last links of unobvious but finalizing cosmic clarity deal with the last of the mutable signs hitherto unmentioned as well as the person at the bottom of the totem pole of importance regarding the discovery of Neptune.

I mistakenly assumed the date of Neptune’s discovery, September 23rd 1846, occurred when the Sun was positioned in the first degree of Libra. On September 23rd of that particular year, the Sun was in the last and very karmic degree of the last of the yet-t0-be-mentioned mutable signs, Virgo. Anytime a planet is placed at the 29th or last degree of a sign, it is a karmic indication of high significance. The date of Neptune’s discovery occurred when the heavenly body that astrologically represents enlightenment and illumination, The Sun, was still shedding light at the 29th degree of the sign of tangibly based details, Virgo.

As we have seen, many confusing factors covered the atmosphere of discovery leading us to September 23rd, 1846. The hazy fog of misperception was finally pierced when a mere astronomy student, Heinrich d’Arrest suggested to his mentor they compare their findings to a drawing of the evening sky. d’Arrest is the only one of the key players behind the discovery of Neptune not born beneath a mutable sign. Galle’s star student was born a Cancer, the sign most associated with the night sky due to it being ruled by that heavenly body which mankind has always been able to see at night without any kind of mechanical assistance, the Moon.

How wondrous that the person least involved by association in the raging debate over the discovery of Neptune was born beneath the sign most associated with the night sky at large.  Heinrich d’Arrest fully completes the cosmic circle by virtue of his suggestion to use an observational tool similar to what Galileo used the night the Aquarian astronomer nearly discovered the watery planet when he drew that evening’s starry sky back in 1612.

Galileo’s date of birth is February 15th, 1564, a date which astrologically translates to the same place in the sky where Neptune was physically located on the night of its observational discovery in 1846, at 25 degrees Aquarius.

Heinrich d’Arrest was born on July 13th, 1822, one day off, but still intrinsically connected to that history altering night in which the boundaries of the Heavens expanded even further outwards when the young Cancerian shouted with joyous disbelief “That star is not on the map!”; since Neptune completed its first full orbit since its discovery on July 12th, 2011.

Blessed Be.

Neptune blue
Neptune – Existentially discovered by the people of Earth on September 23rd, 1846


*Brad Kronen’s book “Love in the Stars” published by Llewellyn Worldwide, Inc.  is available for purchase at your local book seller or online at at the link listed below.

Brad Kronen’s guide on Astrology and Relationships “Love in the Stars” for purchase on

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