TitleHistorical eclipses and earth's rotation
Author(s)F. Richard Stephenson
Description1 online resource (xvi, 557 pages) : digital, PDF file(s)
Abstract NoteThis book is intended for geophysicists, astronomers (especially those with an interest in history), historians and orientalists. The culmination of many years of research, it discusses, in depth, ancient and medieval eclipse observations and their importance in studying Earth's past rotation. This was the first major book on this subject to appear in the last twenty years. The author has specialised in the interpretation of early astronomical records and their application to problems in modern astronomy for many years. The book contains an in-depth discussion of numerous eclipse records from Babylon, China, Europe and the Arab lands. Translations of almost every record studied are given. It is shown that although tides play a dominant long-term role in producing variations in Earth's rate of rotation - causing a gradual increase in the length of the day - there are significant, and variable non-tidal changes in opposition to the main trend
Contents Note1. Variations in the length of the day: a historical perspective -- 2. Tidal friction and the ephemerides of the Sun and Moon -- 3. Pre-telescopic eclipse observations and their analysis -- 4. Babylonian and Assyrian records of eclipses -- 5. Investigation of Babylonian observations of solar eclipses -- 6. Timed Babylonian lunar eclipses -- 7. Untimed Babylonian observations of lunar eclipses: horizon phenomena -- 8. Chinese and other East Asian observations of large solar eclipses -- 9. Other East Asian observations of solar and lunar eclipses -- 10. Records of eclipses in ancient European history -- 11. Eclipse records from medieval Europe -- 12. Solar and lunar eclipses recorded in medieval Arab chronicles -- 13. Observations of eclipses by medieval Arab astronomers -- 14. Determination of changes in the length of the day -- App. A. Timed data -- App. B. Untimed data -- Index of eclipse records -- Index of places of observation
NotesTitle from publisher's bibliographic system (viewed on 05 Oct 2015)
Item TypeBook
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Accession#  Call#StatusIssued ToReturn Due On Physical Location
OB0641     On Shelf