The earth takes a year to turn around the sun one time. The earth takes a year to travel around the sun one time.

Which is suitable, turn around or travel around? I found turn around on this link. http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=23&ved=0ahUKEwjf7O3u2cvQAhVEPY8KHQlXCE8QFgh4MBY&url=http%3A%2F%2Fforum.wordreference.com%2Fthreads%2Fthe-earth-is-turning-around-the-sun.694578%2F&usg=AFQjCNFxG5MM7-aMbFd4Vn_JrB_G7-9uww https://books.google.com/books?id=3PGLAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA25&dq=%22turn+around+the+sun%22&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjD8d7h28vQAhXKOI8KHUORASEQ6AEIOjAG

  • 3
    Since the Earth turns on its own axis, travel around might be better (or simply orbit).
    – Mick
    Nov 28, 2016 at 14:29
  • 3
    You can also say, "The earth revolves around the sun."
    – yubraj
    Nov 28, 2016 at 15:35

2 Answers 2


The technical (astronomical) terms are: to rotate and to revolve

The main difference between the two is the position of the axis: through the object, or outside the object.

In the case of your question, it is not about using the most scientific terms, so the following are OK:

The earth takes a year to rotate around the sun one time.

(although still not the best)

The earth takes a year to travel around the sun one time.

(it is just fine )

The next two are the most correct:

  • The earth takes a year to revolve around the sun one time.

  • The earth takes a year to orbit around the sun one time.

A professional astronomer might have additional ideas, but I am not one of them.

Note: "revolve" is the most "complicated" word, and might not be understood by any average Joe, so be careful to know your audience when you use it.


According to the meaning of words many possibilities can exist:

The earth turns around the sun.

  • to turn - move or cause to move in a circular direction wholly or partly around an axis or point.

The earth travels around the sun.

  • to travel - (of an object or radiation) move, typically in a constant or predictable way.

The earth goes around the sun.

  • to go - move from one place to another; travel. To be in the process of moving.

The earth orbits the sun.

  • to orbit - the regularly repeated elliptical course of a celestial object or spacecraft about a star or planet.

Notice no around needed.

The earth revolves around the sun.

  • to revolve - move in a circle on a central axis, move in a circular orbit around.

The earth moves around the sun.

  • to move - go in a specified direction or manner; change position.

Still the best two choices I would stick to are: travels, revolves, goes and orbits.

  • 1
    You should change rotate to revolve in this answer; rotate is not the right word to used for this. I also don't think turns is a very good choice here.
    – J.R.
    Nov 28, 2016 at 16:12
  • I agree, considering that revolve is a better term and closer to orbit, yet rotate can have the same meaning but am not completely sure if it's applicable here. Nov 28, 2016 at 16:19
  • SovereignSun: According to Ngram both "Earth rotates around the sun" and "Earth revolves around the sun" are very popular. Nov 28, 2016 at 16:23
  • 1
    According to Ngram the latter is much more popular than the former.
    – J.R.
    Nov 28, 2016 at 18:36
  • You are right but it does exist. Bad English? Nov 28, 2016 at 19:10

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