What direction do planets rotate? (Beginner)

Hi there. I am trying to find a listing of what DIRECTION planets (esp. in this solar system) rotate. Any assistance is greatly appreciated.

Every planet in our solar system except for Venus and Uranus rotates counter-clockwise as seen from above the North Pole; that is to say, from west to east. This is the same direction in which all the planets orbit the sun. Uranus was likely hit by a very large planetoid early in its history, causing it to rotate "on its side," 90 degrees away from its orbital motion. Venus rotates backwards compared to the other planets, also likely due to an early asteroid hit which disturbed its original rotation.

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Dave Kornreich

Dave was the founder of Ask an Astronomer. He got his PhD from Cornell in 2001 and is now an assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Physical Science at Humboldt State University in California. There he runs his own version of Ask the Astronomer. He also helps us out with the odd cosmology question.

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