Synopses & Reviews
This is perhaps the only comprehensive account of the last 100 years of dramatic advances in astronomy. A History of Astronomy charts the progress of astronomy from the days when Newtonian physics reigned supreme, photography was in its infancy, and radio astronomy was yet unimagined, right to the present day. This concise book demonstrates that, paradoxically, the cosmos seems to hold more mysteries today than it did a hundred years ago.
Why start at 1890? That year marked one of the most significant dates in the history of the multidimensional story that is the history of astronomy. It was the year in which the Draper Memorial Catalogue of Stellar spectra was published - a publication that provided essential data for an understanding of stellar spectra well into the twentieth century. It's also slightly over a hundred years ago. This is a long enough span of time for any one book on this subject to cover, but sufficient to chart the progress of astronomy from a time when Newtonian physics reigned supreme, photography was in its infancy, and radio astronomy was decades in the future. Paradoxically, the theories of Einstein, Planck and Heisenberg, along with modern radio, X-ray, and space-borne telescopes mean that the cosmos seems to hold more mysteries today than it did a hundred years ago. Any reader with a basic knowledge of astronomy will find this book quite fascinating. Academics, historians, and others who need a definitive history of the major events and characters that influenced the growth of astronomy.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 361-363) and indexes.