Enormous flying creatures, cave-dwelling serpent-monsters, and fortified cities of people on the Moon… these were the imaginative speculations of Johannes Kepler in the early seventeenth century, when he penned the scientific and literary contents of the Somnium, his “dream” of a trip from the Earth to the Moon.

Arguably, the Somnium can be called the first work of science fiction, because it daringly mixed astronomical theories of the day with speculative fantasies of spaceflight and another populated world (the Moon).  Even today, it is difficult to tell what is fiction and what is science in the pages of the Somnium.

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