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    The History of Astronomy: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback) By (author) Michael Hoskin

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    DescriptionAstronomy, perhaps the first of the sciences, was already well developed by the time of Christ. Seventeen centuries later, after Newton showed that the movements of the planets could be explained in terms of gravitation, it became the paradigm for the mathematical sciences. In the nineteenth century the analysis of star-light allowed astrophysicists to determine both the chemical composition and the radial velocities of celestial bodies, while the development of photography enabled distant objects invisible to the human eye, to be studied and measured in comfort. Technical developments during and since the Second World War have greatly enlarged the scope of the science by permitting the study of radiation. This is a fascinating introduction to the history of Western astronomy, from prehistoric times to the origins of astrophysics in the mid-nineteenth century. Historical records are first found in Babylon and Egypt, and after two millennia the arithmetical astronomy of the Babylonians merged with the Greek geometrical approach to culminate in the Almagest of Ptolemy. This legacy was transmitted to the Latin West via Islam, and led to Copernicus's claim that the Earth is in motion. In justifying this Kepler converted astronomy into a branch of dynamics, leading to Newton's universal law of gravity. The book concludes with eighteenth- and nineteenth-century applications of Newton's law, and the first explorations of the universe of stars. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

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  • Full bibliographic data for The History of Astronomy: A Very Short Introduction

    The History of Astronomy: A Very Short Introduction
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Michael Hoskin
    Physical properties
    Format: Paperback
    Number of pages: 136
    Width: 124 mm
    Height: 173 mm
    Thickness: 10 mm
    Weight: 91 g
    ISBN 13: 9780192803061
    ISBN 10: 0192803069

    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T8.0
    B&T Book Type: NF
    BIC E4L: SCP
    BIC subject category V2: PDX
    LC subject heading: ,
    B&T Modifier: Region of Publication: 03
    BIC subject category V2: WNX
    B&T Modifier: Academic Level: 01
    B&T Modifier: Subject Development: 01
    Ingram Subject Code: SE
    B&T General Subject: 710
    B&T Modifier: Continuations: 02
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 16480
    BISAC V2.8: SCI034000
    LC subject heading:
    B&T Merchandise Category: UP
    B&T Approval Code: A52120000
    BISAC V2.8: SCI004000
    DC21: 520.9
    LC subject heading:
    DC22: 520.9
    LC classification: QB15 .H79 2003
    Thema V1.0: PDX, WNX
    Illustrations note
    15 black and white
    Oxford University Press
    Imprint name
    Oxford University Press
    Publication date
    31 July 2003
    Publication City/Country
    Author Information
    Michael Hoskin taught History of Astronomy at Cambridge University for thirty years and was head of the Department of History and Philosophy of Science. He is a Fellow of Churchill College and Emeritus Fellow of St Edmund's College, Cambridge. In 1970 he founded the Journal for the History of Astronomy, which he has edited ever since. He is a former President of the History of Astronomy Commission of the International Astronomical Union, and the only historian to have given an Invited Discourse to the Union. In 2002 the Union named Minor Planet 12223 'Hoskin' in his honour.
    Review quote
    Packed with information as it is, Hoskin's short introduction makes an astonishingly good read. Curtis Wilson, JHA
    Table of contents
    1. The Sky in Prehistory ; 2. Astronomy in Antiquity ; 3. Astronomy in Middle Ages ; 4. Astronomy Transformed ; 5. Astronomy in the Age of Newton ; 6. Exploring the Universe of Stars ; Epilogue ; Further Reading