“Venus is nearly as large as the earth and, as it is much nearer the sun, its temperature must be higher than that of the earth. The average temperature is estimated to be about 140 degrees F. Various phenomena appear to indicate that the planet is surrounded by a comparatively dense and cloudy atmosphere which, indeed, is apparently seen as a luminous border, in the transits of Venus over the sun’s disk, which occur once or twice in a century. This dense atmosphere strongly reflects the sun’s rays and thus prevents the surface of the planet from attaining a temperature too elevated for highly organized life. The planet would be regarded as habitable.”
—Scientific American, March 1911
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