Popular Astronomy

Popular Astronomy

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Furnished with more than a hundred figures, maps and tables, this book was first published in 1878 by Simon Newcomb (1835-1909), a noted mathematician and professor at the United States Naval Observatory. A meticulous work, originally intended to be of use to the general reader as well as the student, it provides a view of astronomy as it stood on the eve of General Relativity, and inevitably includes some theories which have since been disproved. Newcomb outlines a brief history of astronomy, from ancient Greece (when the planets were thought to be fixed in crystal spheres), to the application of the new laws of thermodynamics and the latest observations of the solar system. Included are a rejection of the then prevalent theory that the sun has a cool interior and its own inhabitants, details of the anomaly of Mercury's orbit according to Newtonian theory, and thorough observational guides.show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 117 b/w illus.
  • 1139097016
  • 9781139097017

Table of contents

Preface; Part I. The System of the World Historically Developed: Introduction; 1. The ancient astronomy, or the apparent motions of the heavenly bodies; 2. The Copernican system, or the true motions of the heavenly bodies; 3. Universal gravitation; Part II. Practical Astronomy: Introductory remarks; 1. The telescope; 2. Application of the telescope to celestial measurements; 3. Measuring distances in the heavens; 4. The motion of light; 5. The spectroscope; Part III. The Solar System: 1. General structure of the solar system; 2. The sun; 3. The inner group of planets; 4. The outer group of planets; 5. Comets and meteors; Part IV. The Stellar Universe: 1. The stars as they are seen; 2. The structure of the universe; 3. The cosmogony; Addendum to Part III chapter 2; Appendix; Index; Addendum II, the satellites of Mars; Explanation of the star maps.show more