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This story is not really about discrediting one of Jules Verne's very greatest works.   With that said, the reader should in no way hold new information which appears below against that huge creator of our past, primarily because such presentation is now written by an author of the 21st century; one who now holds the distinct advantage of having all the information of this new age at his disposal -- an advantage which most certainly was not afforded to Mr. Verne!

This story, however really is just about that -- man's progress; for where would mankind be today without fulfilling his quest for truth?

As time goes on, man is supposed to become smarter in order to survive!   Nevertheless, history's never-ending harbinger is that it will always repeat itself -- even 'bad' history. Naturally, so long as man maintains the same set of values and human nature, why shouldn't it?  But really, aren't we supposed to become better than that? Isn't that our true destiny?

One might argue that man's interest to improve himself is evidenced in his set of evolving laws.  This presupposes that they constitute safeguards to assure that man doesn't create the same mistakes; this also intends that such laws remain untarnished by the greed, avarice, and vice which, unfortunately, still remains a staple of our times, as well as, those which preceded us.

Furthermore, aren't the great works of literature supposed to serve as indicators of how to improve ourselves along the way?  The dénouement found in Around the World in Eighty Days espouses that man is supposed to save a day when traveling around the world in a constantly easterly direction.  But isn't that thought eclipsed by the unrelenting theme that Fogg never chastised his company, even his very own servant despite all of the hardship he caused?

The reality is that our literary masterpieces will always become viewed differently as time goes by.  This is because man, himself, changes over time.  One of the major influences causing this is man's mastery over technology.  The introduction of the cellular phone in Star Trek was a hope to the baby boomer generation; yet became a reality today.  This accomplishment quite naturally changes man's perception when viewing books of the past which were based upon difficulties associated with his ability to communicate.  Having a cell phone and charger in our hand, just think how we now might react when reading Robinson Crusoe for the first time.

One might consider that some of these previous great works, once viewed in today's standards might appear just a little bit tarnished, or sometimes seem a tad less attractive.  When reading such novels, one should remember not to let today's realizations detract from the fact that such masterpieces should remain as reflections of the times in which they were written, and not ours!

Aspects of such great literature now serve as beacons showing man how to make the right decisions now.  They preceded today's outlook, thereby making our lives just a little bit easier.

Jules Verne is the second most translated individual author of all time.  He is credited with having authored at least sixty-seven novels.  An approximation of his overall productivity lies somewhere between 15,000 to 30,000 individual pages of text -- a bewildering accomplishment!  In all these pages there's bound to be some errors.  In the schools, an accuracy of 90% usually merits an "A".  Accrediting a 100% accuracy over the time period from Verne’s day until today is not considered to be genius; it approaches the capabilities of the Almighty.  We all know that, by now, Verne undoubtedly has "withstood the test of time".  But, does that mean he was infallible?  Most certainly not!

Finding anomalies in Jules Verne's works may be harder than locating the proverbial "needle in the haystack", or the newly coined "contact lens in the swimming pool".  So, the remainder of this article concerns itself with surfacing such anomalies in an effort to demonstrate how strikingly few seeped through!

Surprisingly enough, all of the supposed errors about to be discussed appeared in Jules Verne's Around the World in Eighty Days[1].  In this book three distinct, unrelated groups of errors were identified.  The first two are considered to be somewhat trivial, but the third may be of major importance since it may qualify the very dénouement of the book as having been an impossible feat.

The first anomaly takes place on page 7 of the book and involves Phileas Fogg discussing matters with his servant Passepartout.  The TrueScan presented below shows that the latter indicated it was twenty-two minutes after eleven.  Fogg responded that Passepartout was four minutes too slow.  He then immediately proceeded to enumerate the exact time by stating, "From this moment, twenty-nine minutes after eleven"...    Well, the simple addition is as follows:

     11:26 ≠ 11:29                  

(Where ≠ means not equal to)

When reviewing page 7, it seems highly unlikely that another whole three minutes could have elapsed in just the very time it took Fogg to pronounce, "No matter; it's enough to mention the error".  And so, just as stated in the book, it certainly is enough to mention the three minute error here as well.

The second TrueScan depicts page 226 in Verne's story.  It claims the Salt Lake to be situated three miles eight hundred feet above the sea.  In stark contrast, the Great Salt Lake today is considered to sit at an altitude of approximately 4,200 feet above sea level.

Click on TrueScan above to verify 4,200 foot altitude

The third issue pertains to the perceived dénouement of the book, whereby it again is put forth that traveling around the world in a constant easterly direction over an eighty day duration should save a day.  The remainder of the this article heartily challenges that hypothesis as being an impossibility.

It seems very curious that nobody before has come forth to challenge the book's premise.  Accordingly, there is much reservation in what is being espoused below; so your verification of the following analyses is warmly appreciated.

In order to rebuke the dénouement, three mathematical analyses are presented below as follows:

The first analysis takes the reader through a two day excursion over the face of the earth when constantly moving in an easterly direction.  It clearly demonstrates that arrival at the origination point is exactly two days later.  It involves a relativistic approach, something which may not have been actively understood during Verne's time.  It also involves the application of today's accepted International Date Line (IDL), a manifestation which, curiously enough, did exist during Verne's day.

The second analysis highlights a one day trip in orbit around the world.  Flight always is maintained in an easterly direction.  It demonstrates that no unexpected changes occur from the first analysis.

The third analysis addresses Fogg's full eighty day fictional journey around the world.  It accounts for Fogg's itinerary and all of the roadblocks he encountered, hypothetically speaking, along the way.  It attempts to challenge the dénouement presented on page 312 of the book which stipulates that Fogg unsuspectingly saved one full day on his journey merely because he had traveled constantly eastward (ref. TrueScan below).

Now according to Fogg's records, it had taken him exactly eighty days and five minutes to travel around the world.  Page 294 indicates that because of this extra five minutes, he had apparently lost his wager.  According to the TrueScan above, however, Fogg hadn't considered the extra day which he had allegedly gained, purely by means of having constantly traveled in an easterly direction thoughout his trip.  As the story goes, Fogg thereafter became notified of his error in time to appear before his peers in London and thereby win his bet.


Figure 1 presents a conception of "Stationary Earth Time Relative to the Sun".  It makes use of an old axiom that the earth both rotates and revolves around a fixed sun.  It shows the earth as a semi-elliptical orb which always maintains rotation in an easterly direction as viewed from the Earth's North Pole.  It embodies the principle that any fixed point on its face requires a full day to make one complete rotation; that is, return to its same starting point relative to the sun's fixed position.  It further demonstrates that such trip takes 24 hours regardless of which latitude any traceable point resides on.  Figure 1 reflects an earth that is divided into 24 equal segments each one hour apart in which high noon always points directly towards the sun.  Notice that points on the surface of the earth rotate about a stationary timeframe which is set in space.  During a duration of one day, every point on the face of the earth (with the exception of the poles) travels through each of these time zones.

Figure 1. Stationary Earth Time Relative to the Sun.

For this example we arbitrarily start out at a time of 8:45 PM.  Coincidentally this matches the same exact time that Phileas Fogg sets off from London in the book.  This time is notated as 20:45 in 24 hour increments (i.e. twelve AM hours plus 8-3/4 PM hours).  By interpreting the Legend in figure 2, notice that for this example Fogg also starts off his trip from London.  As Fogg travels along the face of the earth, his relative position with respect to fixed, known points identified on the earth's surface may be tracked by means of the stationary figure 1 chart.  For purposes of this example, such fixed points are London, Greenwich, and the International Date Line.  Fixed points are placed inside the circle's circumference which represents the earth's surface.  Since Fogg alone has the ability to traverse along the planet's surface, his token is placed on the outside of the circle's circumference.

Figure 2. Two Day Journey Around the World Start Points.

Now, the relative times of any fixed points on the earth may be interpreted with respect to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).  Such convention indicates that:
  London Time = GMT + 1:00
  International Date Line Time = GMT ±12:00

Accordingly, when traversing across the face of earth in an easterly direction, one complete day becomes gained by crossing the International Date Line.  The mathematics behind this is as follows:
   -12:00 - (+12:00) = -24:00

Furthermore, when any object on the face of the earth crosses midnight, that object passes over into the next day.  This is signified by the fact that the 24:00 midnight designation is analogous to 00:00.

In other words, 24:00 on October 2 coincides exactly with 00:00 of October 3.

So, from above, GMT = London Time - 1:00 = 20:45 - 1:00 = 19:45.

Relative IDL Time is determined as follows:
  19:45 + 12:00 = 31:45 - 24:00 (when going from 24:00 to 00:00 upon passing through midnight) = 07:45 on October 3rd
  19:45 - 12:00 = 07:45 on October 2nd = 7:45 AM

After departing from London, it takes Fogg exactly two days to traverse the earth's surface in order to return there.  Be that as it may, he must travel one-half of the earth's surface per day.  Hence, Fogg is gaining overall time relative to London with each passing moment.  He also has to his benefit the easterly movement of the earth which gains time at a rate of 24 hours per earth day.  In relativistic terms, Fogg's total elapsed time then becomes the sum of his own time gained from traversing the planet by his own means plus the time he gains from getting a free ride upon the earth as it freely rotates in its easterly direction, illustrated as follows:

Fogg Own Time = 12 hours gained per earth day

Earth Elapsed Time = 24 hours gained per earth day

Fogg Elapsed Time = Fogg Own Time + Earth Elapsed Time

= 12 hours gained per earth day + 24 hours gained per earth day

= 1/2 hour gained per hour of earth elapsed time + 1 hour gained per hour of earth elapsed time

= 3/2 hours gained per hour of Earth Elapsed Time

Or, assuming that Fogg proceeds at a constant speed:  Earth Elapsed Time = 2/3 Fogg Elapsed Time

From these formulas, table I may be established showing Fogg's exact location on the celestial chart with respect to each fixed earth point for each itemized leg of his trip where:

Figure 2 captures Fogg's positioning with respect to earth's three fixed points at the very commencement of the trip, hereinafter denoted as Leg "0".

For each leg of the trip, fixed point times represent the sum of Total Elapsed Time plus respective start times.

Table I. Two Day Trip.

Respective dates are calculated using the aforementioned convention where the date becomes increased by one day when crossing over midnight and decreased by one day when Fogg overtakes the International Date Line.

All times denote hours, minutes, and seconds. For example:
     27:15:00 means 27 hours, 15 minutes, 0 seconds
     1:37:30 means 1 hour, 37 minutes, 30 seconds.

Since Fogg has to traverse eleven hours of the earth to reach the International Date Line [i.e.; (GMT +12:00) - (GMT +1:00)] and he traverses earth at the rate of 1/2 hour per earth hour elapsed, it takes him exactly 22 earth hours to reach the IDL.

For Fogg's two day excursion, table II relates table I respective times as they would appear in twenty-four hour increments (ref. figure 1).  Table II numbers are obtained simply by subtracting the following times from all table I numbers (excepting, of course, those specified in the column entitled, "Earth Elapsed Time":

24 hours from numbers that are in excess of one day
48 hours from numbers that are in excess of two days
72 hours from numbers that are in excess of three days

Table II. Two Day Trip -- Actual Earth Hours Shown.

Table II confirms that Fogg overtakes the International Date Line at exactly 5:45:00 because the same time and respective date are afforded for the IDL during Leg 5 of the trip.

Notice that the London time exactly matches that of Fogg in Leg 9 when the trip ends. This confirms that after 48 hours, or 2 days of elapsed time, Fogg not only arrives at London, but does so at exactly 20:45, or 8:45 PM.

This analysis demonstrates that Fogg reaches London in exactly two days, but does not save a day.  This is reconciled by the knowledge that Fogg passes through midnight three times, whereby London only passes through midnight two times.  Moreover, this date gained by Fogg becomes offset by the date lost as he overtook the International Date Line.  Hence, there was a net gain for Fogg of only two days (3 - 1) which turns out to equal the total Earth Elapsed Time (or total London elapsed time) being exactly 48 hours!

Now, the same exact celestial clock conditions hold true as Fogg goes around the world in space, as opposed to traversing the surface of the planet.  So, if today, Fogg were to ride a satellite and complete the same mission in exactly two days, he would arrive over London exactly two days later.  Please bear in mind that in order to successfully accomplish this mission, Fogg's spaceship would have to:

a) Compensate for the (lost) rotational speed of the earth once he no longer retains the advantage of its gravitational pull.  Fogg's spaceship speed would have to be much greater than that of the earth because he would now have to travel a much greater distance than would earth in order to make one complete rotation within the same time period.

b) Add additional speed to assure that he flies over all of the topography of the earth which exists at the same latitude as London during the two day duration.


Most importantly, if Fogg were now to increase his satellite velocity sufficiently to not only stay abreast with earth's easterly movement, but also to circumnavigate this same topography (as described above) in an easterly direction in just one day, he would then have crossed midnight two times as compared to London's single midnight crossing.  However, just like in the prior analysis, Fogg's single day lost would have become offset by the day gained when he crossed over the International Date Line in an easterly direction.  Hence, Fogg would then have met London at exactly 8:45 PM one day later.

This approach verifies that space and time are "conserved"!  Otherwise, Fogg would save a day by orbiting the planet, thereby returning one day early and turning his satellite into a Time Machine; which we know clearly is "not" the case!


The first and third columns of table III chart Fogg's initial estimate for traveling around the world.  A careful comparison with respect to pages 18 and 19 of the book reveals that table III indeed captures all of the fine details.  Footnote 1 in the table reiterates this point.

Table III. Eighty Day Trip.

Fogg's intermediate stops along the way also are charted in table III.  Exact page references from the book are carefully tracked via footnote 2 entries.

Fogg indicated his eighty day trip was to commence on Wednesday, the 2nd of October and to finish on Saturday, the 21st of December.

These very day to date spreads coincide exactly with those expressed in the 1872 calendar, the very year in which Verne is considered to have written this book.

Figure 3. 1872 Calendar.

An accounting of this eighty day period of elapsed time is substantiated as follows:

     The interval of time from 8:45 PM on October 2, 1872 through 8:45 PM on October 31, 1872 = 29 days.
     The interval of time from 8:45 PM on October 31, 1872 through 8:45 PM on November 30, 1872 = 30 days.
     The interval of time from 8:45 PM on November 30, 1872 through 8:45 PM on December 21, 1872 = 21 days.

      29 days
      30 days
   +21 days
      80 days

Table III next converts column three entries into respective estimated arrival dates, along with their associated days of the week, using the 1872 calendar as a basis.  Footnote 3 of table III documents this accurate relationship.  Entries express elapsed, or running, dates/days.  They also exemplify 1872 calendar equivalents of the full eighty day duration which London must have experienced between October 2nd and December 21st, 1872 (ref. analysis above); that very same eighty day period which Fogg was accorded to complete his mission of traveling around the world.

The next section of table III gives actual arrival/departure information (in terms of dates, associated days and times) as it should have appeared in Fogg's original log.  Footnote 2 designates that all contained listings truly were obtained (or gleaned) from respective pages in the book.  The "Reference Pages" column of table III itemizes their whereabouts.  Footnote 3 denotes use of the included calendar again in order to assure consistency.

The heavy set of borders depicted in table III helps to demarcate, or distinguish between what would have appeared as Fogg's original log [blue area], as opposed to newly entered information [yellow area].  The last column of table III also may have appeared in Fogg's log, but not to the same degree of accuracy (ref. pages 18 and 19 in the book).

Based upon Fogg's log description in the book (shown below), applicable table III columns should very nearly resemble what Fogg's log would have looked like, with the exception that his departure points were to have been laid out as columns, rather than rows.

Notice that table III includes a column entitled, "Gain Made or Loss Suffered", just as described on page 44.  When entries from this column equal respective estimated arrival date minus actual arrival date information, all relevant table III line item data appears as gray colored cells; meaning, that for purposes of this analysis, such itemized data "matches" and no further analysis is needed.

Page 44 of the book (shown above) captures Fogg's entry that "158-1/2 hours" was required to travel from London to the Suez destination point.  This suggests that his original log might well have also included a complete compilation of hours spent to complete all other legs of the trip.  If so, this accounting could have been used in combination with his stamped passport to verify his complete journey around the world.

Now, the following listing addresses book entries that appear to exhibit time related contradictions with respect to other known facts.  These consist of "day/date" and "hourly" types of anomalies designated as follows:

1) Day/Date Anomaly:  Page 44 of the book (shown above) indicates an entry of Friday, October 9th.  This contradicts page 22 (also shown above) which indicates that October 2nd occurred on a Wednesday.  Since October 9th must occur seven days after that, it must also eventuate on a Wednesday.

2) Day/Date Anomalies: Green colored cells of table III identify "Gain Made or Loss Suffered" entries which appear to contradict respective, remaining line item entries also highlighted in green.  Actual pages in the book which govern such contradictions are reproduced below in order to assure that green colored cell information was properly transcribed.  Now:

The Hong Kong ledger (ref. Table III) indicates that Fogg arrived twenty-four hours behindhand; yet mysteriously enough contradicts this by also denoting his actual arrival as having been one day ahead of his initial estimate.  Had the actual information for this line item been reported in Fogg's original log as a Hong Kong Time entry, it would have translated to an equivalent London date of seven hours earlier, possibly reverting the Wednesday/Nov. 6th actual arrival entry into a Tuesday/Nov. 5th London Time entry.  That possibility could only serve to exacerbate the degree of contradiction from two days to three.  Footnote 4 of table III attempts to resolve this discrepancy.

The San Francisco ledger relates that Fogg arrived on schedule; yet oddly enough also placed him there two days ahead of schedule.  Had the actual information for this line item been reported in Fogg's original log as a San Francisco Time entry, it would have translated to an equivalent London date of sixteen hours earlier, possibly tossing the Tuesday/Dec. 3rd entry into a Monday/Dec. 2nd London Time entry.  That possibility could only serve to exacerbate the degree of contradiction from two days to three.  Subtracting one additional day for having crossed the International Date Zone would only aggravate this relationship that much more.  Footnote 5 of table III attempts to resolve this discrepancy.

3) Hourly Anomalies:  Page 137 of the book (shown above) indicates that Fogg arrived in Hong Kong at 5:00 AM on November 6th.  This entry is highlighted in orange in table III.  The steamer for Yokohama was due on the 5th and would of course be missed.  Fogg reportedly was twenty-four hours behindhand.

From this information, the very latest that the steamer bound for Yokohama could have sailed from Hong Kong would have been just before midnight on the 5th of November 1872.  The greatest possible total elapsed time from the very start of the journey (way back in London) until the steamer bound for Yokohama could have sailed from Hong Kong is calculated by interpreting actual departures in terms of London Time, not Hong Kong Time; principally because London Time lags (i.e.; is earlier than) Hong Kong Time by seven hours.  Hence, midnight London Time occurs seven hours later than midnight Hong Kong Time for any given day/date, thereby giving the Yokohama seven more hours in which to have departed. The calculation for determining this extent of elapsed time is computed as follows:

The interval of time from 8:45 PM on Wednesday, October 2nd, 1872 until 8:45 PM on Tuesday, November 5th, 1872 is exactly 34 days

The interval of time from 8:45 PM on Tuesday, November 5th, 1872 until midnight is exactly 3-1/4 hours.

      34 days + 3-1/4 hours = 34 days 3 hours and 15 minutes.

Now, Fogg's estimate of the trip up to that point in time (ref. Table III) was:

7 + 13 + 3 + 13 = 36 days.

This estimate is almost two full days later than the latest possible embarkation time of the Yokohama steamer from Hong Kong.

However, had Fogg been keeping his log in terms of London Time, it becomes very difficult to reconcile his 5:00 AM arrival in Hong Kong as being twenty-four hours delinquent since his initial departure time from London was at 8:45 PM.

This apparent discrepancy is much easier explained by considering that Fogg really kept his log according to the time zones he was traveling through during his trip.  Hence, his 5:00 AM arrival is much closer to a Hong Kong time of 3:45 AM, instead of its equivalent 8:45 PM London Time (ref. Footnote 6 in table III).

This may be why page 198 of the book goes out of the way to explain that Fogg's servant, Passepartout, was in the habit of maintaining his watch at London Time throughout the entire trip; clearly acknowledged as an indication of his not knowing any better.

Given this scenario, the latest possible total elapsed time that the Yokohama steamer could have sailed from Hong Kong to Japan would have been the 34 day 3 hour and 15 minute summation given above minus the seven hours in which the 5:00 AM Hong Kong Time would have preceded the 5:00 AM London Time on November 6th, computed as follows:

34 days 3 hours and 15 minutes - 7 hours = 33 days 20 hours and 15 minutes.

Hence, the very latest the Yokohama could have left the Hong Kong port would have been more than two days in advance of Fogg's initial schedule estimate.  Again, the Footnote 4 entry in table III attempts to expose this time related error in the book[1] and, thereby resolve this inadequacy by correcting for it.

Table III places Fogg at Calcutta "on schedule".  The lost time which amounted thereafter is compatible with Fogg's report that he had arrived in Hong Kong 24 hours behindhand (ref. page 137 and table III).

Adding this one day lost to Fogg's initial estimate for arrival in Hong Kong of Thursday/Nov. 7 would have precipitated an actual arrival there on Friday/November 8th, 1872 London Time.  This would have given Fogg only five days to go from Hong Kong to Yokohama, which amounted to less time than the six days he originally estimated it would take for that portion of the trip. This is computed as follows:

November 13th - November 8th = 5 days

Naturally from the table III reconstructed log it is evident that Fogg's arrival in Yokohama on the morning of Thursday/Nov. 14th most probably translated to Wednesday/November 13th in terms of London Time, thereby allowing him to meet his schedule and catch the "General Grant"!

4) Day/Date Anomaly:  Table III reflects the "General Grant" as having departed from Yokohama at 6:30 PM on November 14, 1872 (ref. pages 193, 194 and 195 of the book).  Page 196 (shown further below), indicates that 21 days were estimated to cross the Pacific Ocean and land in San Francisco.  The math calculation shown below yields an arrival date of December 5th, 1872.  This may be easily verified by checking the calendar given above.  Now, page 196 further indicates that Fogg was therefore justified in hoping to reach San Francisco by Dec. 2, which, according the calculation and calendar check appears to have been completely impossible.

Nov. 14 + 21 days = Nov. 35th - 30 days in November = December 5th.

Considering that Fogg's log wasn't placed into the book, it's quite conceivable that Verne possibly never had spent time to draft one.  Then, quite obviously, he wouldn't have had the benefit of being able to verify calendar entries which he placed into his book by means of a timetable similar to the handy table III which appears above.  This may by why such time related errors addressed above were never corrected before the book became published.

Table IV comprises Fogg's daily whereabouts for the entire trip.  It accurately reflects Fogg's "reconstructed" log, as well as renders a secondary analysis which places Fogg at particular places during established dates during his trip.  This is accomplished as follows:

The third column of table IV was populated using respective table III estimated arrival information where modification was made to account for input appearing in the table III "Gain Made or Loss Suffered" column.  Then, using this reconstructed data, the "Estimated Duration" column of table IV was completed by converting itemized dates into elapsed days for all respective legs of the trip.  The considerable amount of time spent while stopping over in New York was added to the leg between San Francisco and New York.  A comparison made between the table III and table IV "Estimated Duration" columns reveals that the eighty day sum totals remain the same, whereby entry differences are noted only for legs of the trip which were encountered before reaching the 180th Meridian.  Accordingly, it can be deduced that the losses suffered became balanced by other gains made during the course of the trip.

Now, over a one day period which starts and ends at 8:45 PM in London, that location, in going through one complete rotation about the North Pole, travels one, and only one time through each and every time zone (ref. Figure 1).  One of those time zones just so happens to be midnight which places it into the next day.  So, for each complete day spent during this 8:45 to 8:45 PM time period, London adds one day, or date to its calendar.  Hence, in eighty days, London adds eighty days/dates to its calendar.  Based upon this analysis, a new column has been added to table IV which indicates the number of times London passes through midnight for each respective leg of the trip.  Notice that it matches exactly the listings of the "Estimated Duration" column in the table.  With respect to an 8:45 PM London Time, equivalent times for the destination points itemized in table III have been calculated using World Time listings, and entered into table IV.  And, from this information, the number of times Fogg experiences midnight can be determined.  Notice that respective entries for this listing again match those featured in the "Estimated Duration" column, with the exception that one extra time has been added for the Bombay leg of the journey.  Now, for every 8:45 to 8:45 PM London Time twenty-four hour measured period which occurs, no matter what location on the earth Fogg starts out at during his day, he will cross midnight one time as the result getting a free ride aboard the planet.  The added day occurs when Fogg, who constantly travels in an easterly direction, crosses midnight a second time during just one of those measured periods due to his own relative movement away from London.  Most probably, this occurs during the Bombay leg of the trip since at 8:45 PM London Time, Bombay is at 2:15 AM on its next day.  In any event, Fogg would have to pick up this extra day due to his constant travel eastward; if not by Bombay, definitely by the time he had reached Hong Kong.  The key here is that this added day can only occur one time, no matter what leg of the journey it becomes picked up at.

Table IV. Number of Midnight Experiences

Page 312 of the book is again reproduced below, but now highlights an excerpt that maintains Fogg's absence from London only lasted for seventy-nine days.  [This is evidenced by the fact that the sun had passed over the London meridian only seventy-nine times.  It would have had to pass over London eighty times in order to enable Fogg a full eighty days in which to complete his excursion.]

As stated above, however, Fogg's records disclosed that it actually had taken him eighty days and five minutes to travel around the world.  Because this duration exceeded his time allotment, he was under the impression that he had arrived back in London late, thereby losing his bet.  It was only some time later on the following day that Fogg finally was informed that he had arrived early, thereby barely leaving him sufficient time to make his final return to the Reform Club in order to win his bet.

As the story goes, Fogg hadn't realized that he had gained an extra day while traveling around the world -- merely due to his constant travel in an easterly direction (ref. green enclosed information below).  Such neglected event would have occurred about 52 days into Fogg's trip (i.e.; the duration from October 2nd to November 23rd - ref table III).  However, since the book indicates Fogg wasn't made aware of such gain until after completion of his trip, his daily log couldn't possibly have accounted for it.

Acting under the hunch that the Reference[1] story line might have been different from other accountings of the book, relevant pages from References[2] and [3] also were reviewed.  As represented in the TrueScans below, these versions of the book, at least with regard to essential information presented in this article, also describe the same exact story line and travel dates as described above; hence, assuring that such story line remains "universal", and that there is no inconsistency, at least with regard to the book's translation.


Table V incorporates results from the above three analyses.  An extra day becomes gained by any traveler, no matter what the duration of the excursion might be, by virtue of the fact that he always crosses the midnight hour into the next day just one more time than does London.  Most importantly, such gain always becomes offset by the loss of a day which becomes sustained when the traveler crosses over the International Date Line in an easterly direction.

Table V. Absolute Number of Midnight Crossings Gained

For the above listed examples, table VI now shows results for the number of times the traveler and London, respectively, would have passed under the sun.

Table VI. Absolute Number of Noon Crossings

Notice that the quantities listed in table V and table VI are identical for obvious reasons.  From this comparison, a formula can easily be derived which states:

The number of times London passes under the sun = The number of twenty-four hour days under consideration

The number of times Traveler passes under the sun = The number of twenty-four hour days under consideration + 1

The lower highlight shown on page 312 of the book conforms to these equations.  In effect, it concedes that the Fogg had experienced one more noontime event than London.  The only difference is the book claims that a trip which requires an eighty day duration can be achieved by traveling constantly eastward in just seventy-nine days.


The analyses and observations given above should dispel any further claims that a single day might be saved when traveling around the world in an easterly direction.

Such premise validates preservation of a space-time principle which holds that, at the achievable velocities known today, man cannot orbit the earth in a spaceship, nor for that matter traverse its face, in a single day, and by virtue of crossing over the International Date Line in an easterly direction thereby arrive in London one day earlier; arriving at an actual time which, by the way, would have been yesterday -- in a Time Machine!

This principle also holds for the portion of page 137 in the book which indicates that Fogg would have lost a day had he instead constantly traveled in a westerly direction.  This is explained by a reverse set of conditions, whereby Fogg's supposed losing a single day when crossing the IDL becomes offset by the actual day gained when London travels passed midnight.

As an example of this, for Fogg to leave London on October 2nd and travel in a westerly direction in order to arrive there on October 3rd, the following would have to occur:  First he would have to cross over the International Date Line which would take him from October 2nd into October 3rd.  During this same period of time the earth, traveling constantly in an easterly direction, would have crossed over midnight and thereby also jumped into October 3rd.  Accordingly, Fogg would then have continued in a westerly direction until he reached London on that same date.  Naturally Fogg would have to cross the IDL before reaching London during his trip around the world.

Had Fogg's velocity also been sufficient to propel him passed midnight before London had a chance to reach it, the following would have occurred:  Again, Fogg would first cross the IDL catapulting him from October 2nd into October 3rd.  As he overtook midnight, he would again regress into October 2nd until he reached London on that date.


Reference[4] is considered to be the very article which Verne apparently used to frame his famed dénouement.  Although Poe and Verne both were genius writers, neither was known to be a great mathematicians.

Just think, reference[4] may be the strangest place of all in which to locate further support for the highly contradictory viewpoints raised in this article.  Nevertheless, Three Sundays in a Week focuses upon people who had different perceptions about the date of their gathering, principally because two of the three just completed a circumnavigation of the earth in opposite directions.  Salient portions of this reference are cited below:

Captain S. speaking:

"Now, suppose that I sail from this position a thousand miles east.  Of course I anticipate the rising of the sun here at London by just one hour.  I see the sun rise one hour before you do.  Proceeding, in the same direction, yet another thousand miles, I anticipate the rising by two hours; another thousand by three hours, and so on, until I go entire round the globe, and back to this spot, when having gone 24 thousand miles east, I anticipate the rising of the London sun by no leas than 24 hours; that is to say, I am a day in advance of your time.

"Captain Pratt, on the contrary, when he had sailed a thousand miles west of this position, was an hour, and when he had sailed 24 thousand miles west was 24 hours, or one day, behind the time at London.  Thus, with me, yesterday was Sunday; thus, with you, today is Sunday and thus, with Pratt, tomorrow will be Sunday.  And what is more, Mr. Rumgudgeon, it is positively clear that we are all right".

Now, supposing that Verne actually had used this source for his story, surely he must have realized that something was awry with its timetable.  Possibly, he presumed the problem to be simply that the world just hadn't yet found a way to properly account for such timing inadequacies, instead of realizing that the very premise of saving a day when traveling around the world in an easterly direction was, indeed, flawed.  After all, nobody up to that point in time had yet linked the realized day gained with one which also must be forfeited during a traveler's unobtrusive "doubling of midnight"!  And this might be the very best explanation of why Jules Verne finally approved this tried and true dénouement for use in his book.

So, through the genius of Jules Verne this dénouement most probably became adapted into one of the most enduring climaxes which exists today; one, mind you, which reads as a very plausible scenario.

In closing, did Jules Verne finally pull one over on us all, or did the whole world always know that you just can't gain a day by traveling around the world in an easterly direction?  Or, perhaps is there now some new enlightenment?


1 Around the World in Eighty Days, Jules Verne; Philadelphia -- Porter & Coates, 1873.
2 The Tour of the World in Eighty Days, Jules Verne; Boston -- Osgood, 1873.
3 Le Tour Du Monde En Quatre-vingts Jours, Jules Verne; Bibliotheque E-Education Et De Recreation; Paris -- Hetzel, 1873.
3 Three Sundays in a Week, Edgar Allen Poe; 1841.

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