*************************************************************************** * * * ELECTRONIC NEWSLETTER FOR THE HISTORY OF ASTRONOMY * * * * Published by the Working Group for the History of Astronomy * * in the Astronomische Gesellschaft * * * * Number 7, December 2, 1994 * * * * A translation of * * * * ELEKTRONISCHE MITTEILUNGEN ZUR ASTRONOMIEGESCHICHTE * * Nr. 7, 3. November 1994 * * * * Edited by: Dr. Wolfgang R. Dick <wdi@potsdam.ifag.de> * * * * Translated by: Mr. Donald Bellunduno <76450.1741@CompuServe.COM> * * * *************************************************************************** Contents -------- Mathias Iven: Research Project "3 men named Foerster" Alina Eremeeva: History of Astronomy Conference at Pulkovo Observatory Conference Calendar 1994-96 Museums and Exhibits Memorials New books Expressions of thanks Imprint Addendum by the translator: New astronomical books in review in North America Space Anniversaries (from the SPACE CALENDAR) ........................................................................... Research Project: "3 men named Foerster" ---------------------------------------- By Mathias Iven, Potsdam A project, conducted by the URANIA-Association "Wilhelm Foerster" in Potsdam, and in cooperation with the Ministry for Science, Research and Culture in the principalities of Brandenburg, has been going on since August 1994. It is focusing on the life, research, and works of three gentlemen/astronomers named Foerster: Wilhelm Foerster, Friedrich Wilhelm Foerster, and Karl Foerster. The Astronomer Wilhelm Foerster (1832-1921), father of Karl and Friedrich Wilhelm, was, in addition to his scientific contributions (among other things, initiator of the Babelsberg Observatory as well as the institutes on top of the "Telegrafenberg" in Potsdam) also in 1888 Co-Founder of the "Urania" Association for the advancement of science, which is still in operation today. Karl Foerster (1874-1970) became world-reknown as "Foerster of Shrubs". In 1910/11 in his only outside nursery in back of his country house in Bornim he cultivated Rittersporn and Phlox. His sinking and ever-blooming garden, which he built directly next to the house, is seen by most as being of exemplary, and impeccable taste. In the shadow of his brothers and his father, Friedrich Wilhelm Foerster (1869-1966) was certainly unjustly less noticed than any of the afore-mentioned, even though Robert Musil and Franz Kafka were mentioned in his book "Jugendlehre", which came out in 1906. This pedagogical and educational reformer was imbitterly attacked through the hate of the Right-Wing Radicals. In 1922, he moved his place of residence to Switzerland, mainly because he was to have been the second murder by hanging victim after Walter Rathenau. Special attention in this research project has been given to the extraordinary cooperation of all three personalities, free from classical multi-generational conflicts. This originated but is not entirely explainable from a familial view-point. For this reason, one of the main and far reaching goals of the project is to erect a central research-institute in which archival, and both primary and secondary literature of the "Foerster-Trio" can be located. Indeed, it will be a place where extended and comprehensive documentation on every single achievement of the Foerster Family can be found. >From these goals the first steps of the project have begun, for example: comprehensive inquiries into the lives and works of the three personalities in question; and in addition to researching the material at hand, also exploring and researching the works which, up until today, have not been explored or read and catalogued (mainly on Wilhelm and Friedrich Wilhelm Foerster) on the Foerster Family. It has also been planned to install a bibliographical catalogue of letters (primary and secondary literature) and catalogue cards in order to further the process for others to be able to continually research the life and works of the Foerster Family. Early research results should be presented in a conference in Potsdam from the 16 to the 19 March, 1995. The presentations and parts of the discussions, as well as other texts already submitted up to that point, will eventually be published in a conference-edition. During the first day of the conference the "Wilhelm Foerster Prize" which was established by the Urania Association "Wilhelm Foerster" and through the Ministry for Science, Research and Culture in the principalities of Brandenburg, will be awarded. In addition to the presentations and discussions, there will also be viewings and tours in the garden of Karl Foerster, in the Wilhelm Foerster Observatory (Berlin), on the Potsdam "Telegrafenberg" (astrophysical and geophysical institutes), and in the Babelsberg Observatory are also included in the program. Whoever is interested in this project, or whoever needs help in interpreting or finding secondary literature or recently founded locations of archives containing information on the Foerster Family, or can contribute any suggestions and perhaps also take part in the conference as a visiting guest, please contact the URANIA Association "Wilhelm Foerster" Potsdam, Brandenburger Str. 38, 14467 Potsdam, Telephone # (0331) 29 17 41, Fax (0331) 29 36 83. ........................................................................... History of Astronomy Conference at Pulkovo Observatory ------------------------------------------------------ By Alina Eremeeva, Moscow The coming year 1995 is the year of the 50th anniversary of the end of the World War II. The Euro-Asian Astronomical Society plans to hold a scientific memorial conference dedicated to this date "Astronomers, Astronomy and the World War II". The conference is to be held in Pulkovo, on April 24-28, 1995. Prof.V.Abalakin has agreed to become the Chairman of the Scientific Organizing Committee. The preliminary list of topics is as follows: 1. Astronomy in the pre-war years 2. Astronomers at the front and the rear 3. Astronomy working for the front 4. Fate of astronomical centers at the front and the rear 5. Scientific and technological progress in astronomy on base of military technology 6. Discoveries and inventions by astronomers during the war years 7. Round table: Astronomy in a world without world wars We would very much appreciate any help to find people who could contribute to the conference with a talk or (as those who remember the World War II events may be unable to make such a long trip) just by writing down some reminiscences of their war experience and sending the writing as a poster to the conference. Contacts: Alina Eremeeva Secretary to the Conference Organizing Committee E-mail: alina@sai.msk.su or boch@astronomy.msk.su Victor K. Abalakin E-mail: vicabal@gao.spb.su Robert A. McCutcheon E-mail: rmccutcheon@author.gsfc.nasa.gov Phone : (301) 497-2743 ........................................................................... Conference Calender 1994-96 --------------------------- 1994 ---- Attention! Calendar correction: 10.-15. November, Berlin (Germany) International Congress "Galileo Galilei" (Istituto Italiano di Cultura, c/o Italian General Consulate, Hiroshima Str. 1, D-10785 Berlin, Tel. 0049-30-2617875, Fax 2640941) 24.-25. November, Gent (Belgium) The George Sarton Lectures of the University of Gent will include G.L'E.Turner on "Gerard Mercator and the Louvain Workshops" 25. November, Strasbourg (France) La dix-huitieme reunion "Astronomie et Sciences Humaines" Salle Leon XIII au FEC, place Saint Etienne, 10 h (G.Jasniewicz, Observatoire Astronomique, 11 rue de l'Universite, F-67000 Strasbourg, France, Tel. (33) 88 35 82 18 26. November, Amsterdam (Netherlands) Symposium on navigational instruments (Scheepvaartmuseum, Kattenburgerplein 1, 1018 KK Amsterdam, The Netherlands) 27. November, Paris (France) 5eme Salon des Antiques Scientifiques open 10:00 to 19:00, Grande Bouveche, 71 rue de Paris, 91400 Orsay, France, admission free (Details: Comite Municipal des fetes, BP 47-91401 Orsay cedex, France, tel: (1) 69 82 89 27) 10. December, Potsdam (Germany) Colloquium 70 years of the Sun Observatory Einstein-Tower Presentations by W.Mattig, K.Hentschel. (Dr. J.Staude, Astrophysical Institute of Potsdam, Telegrafenberg, D-14473 Potsdam, Germany, Tel. (0331) 288 2300, Fax 288 2310) 16. December, Potsdam (Germany) Honorary Colloquium to the 80th Birthday of Prof Dr Friedrich Wilhelm Jaeger Lectures by L.Oetken and H.H.Voigt (Dr. J.Staude, see above) 1995 ---- 16.-19. March, Potsdam (Germany) Scientific Conference "The 3 Foersters" (see above) Attention! Conference correction: 20.-24. March, Berlin (Germany) VIth Physics/History conference on the theme "150 years of German Physical Society" and international physics historical conference on the "Emergence of Modern Physics" (Dr. Dieter Hoffmann, FSP Wissenschaftsgeschichte, Jaegerstr. 10/11, D-10117 Berlin, Tel. (030) 20192-164/152, Fax (030) 20192-154/162) 20.-24. March, Hamburg (Germany) Conference of the German Geophysical Society. (Lectures on the History of Geophysics/Geosciences are planned) In order to register for the lectures (with synopsis) up until the 1. December 1994, please contact: Prof. Makris, Institute for Geophysics, Bundesstr. 55, 20146 Hamburg, Tel. (040) 4123-3969 Copy please to: Prof. Dr. G.Buntebahrt, Institute for Geophysics of the TU, Clausthal-Zellerfeld, Germany 24.-28. April, St.Petersburg/Pulkovo (Russia) Conference "Astronomers, Astronomy and World War II" (see above) 7. May, London (England) The 18th International Antique Scientific & Medical Instrument Fair Portman Hotel, Portman Square, London W1, 10:00 - 16:30. (Details: Peter Delehar 081-866 8659) 29. October, London (England) The 19th International Antique Scientific & Medical Instrument Fair Portman Hotel, Portman Square, London W1. (Details: 081-866 8659) 1996 ---- 5.-6. June, Amsterdam and Rotterdam (Netherlands) Second International Congress for Maritime History (Mrs. Drs. C. Reinders Folmer, P.O. Box 102, 2350 AC Leiderdorp, The Netherlands, Tel: (31) 7189 5382) ........................................................................... Museums and Exhibits -------------------- London (England) The exhibition "Instruments of Discovery" which was being planned by the Scientific Instrument Society has been cancelled due to financial reasons. Salzburg (Austria) 26 July - 13 November 1994 Exhibit "Time and Measures. Sun-dials and scientific devices." On display will include clocks, sun-dials, globes, distance-measuring instruments, telescopes, astrolabia, Armillarspheres, precision instruments by Georg Friedrich Brander, measuring instruments from mountain works, technical supplies for war-purposes, portraits, and graphics. In the center of the collection stand the clocks, and sun-dials from the collection of the Arch-Bishop of Salzburg Leopold Anton Freiherr von Firmian (1727-1744). Specifically, a 1 meter high astronomical table-clock. Salzburger Museum Carolino Augusteum, Museumsplatz 1, A-5020 Salzburg, Tel. (0662) 8411-34/37 Daily 9am - 5pm, Tuesday 9am -8pm, Monday closed Catalogue and Essay-edition: look up section "New books", P.Husty and "Die Uhren ..." ("The clocks ...") Hildesheim (Germany) 17 July - 27 November 1994 Exhibit "China - a Cradle of World-Culture. 5000 years of discoveries and exploration". Among the sections are one devoted to astronomy presenting among other exhibits an armillar sphere. Roemer- and Pelizaeus-Museum Daily (Monday also) 10 am - 6 pm, Wednesday up until 8 pm Tel. (05121) 93690 Edinburgh (Scotland, Great Britain) 8 October - 31 December 1994 "A Heavenly Library: Treasures from the Royal Observatory's Crawford Collection" is an exhibition to commemorate the centenary of The Royal Observatory, Edinburgh. The Crawford Library is perhaps one of the worlds's five foremost collections of historical astronomical texts. The 15,000 books, manuscripts and pamphlets were an outright gift by James Ludovic Lindsay, 26th Earl of Crawford. This is the first display devoted to treasures from this library, which are shown together with associated scientific instruments drawn from other collections. Royal Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh Monday to Saturday 10:00 - 17:00, Sunday 12:00 - 17:00, admission free Catalogue: see section "New Books", Macdonald and Morrison-Low Edinburgh (Scotland, Great Britain) "Reaching for the Stars" is an exhibition at the Visitor Centre, the Royal Observatory, Blackford Hill, Edinburgh EH9 3HJ staged to celebrate its centenary. Details: 031-668 8405. Brussels (Belgium) November - December 1994 An exhibition to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the death of Mercator is held at the Bibliotheque Royale de Belgique. Duisburg (Germany) 4 September 1994 - 31 Januar 1995 Exhibit "Verfolgt, Geachtet, Universal - Gerhard Mercator - Europa und die Welt" (Persecuted, esteemed, universal - Gerhard Mercator, - Europe and the world) including atlases, maps, cartographical hints, especially the Mercator Astrolabia, which were only found in 1992. Kultur- und Stadthistorisches Museum (Culture and Historical City Museum), Johannes-Corputius-Platz 1, D-47049 Duisburg, Tel. (0203) 2 83 26 40 Closed Monday Catalogue: 255 Pages, DM 48,- (Source: Der Vermessungsingenieur 45(1994)5, p. 255) Potsdam (Germany) 10 December 1994 - ca. March 1995 Exhibit "70 years Solar Observatory Einstein-Turm (Einstein's tower)" Place: Kuppelgebaeude des Grossen Refraktors im Astrophysikalischen Observatorium (Dome of the Large Refractor in the Astrophysical Observatory), Telegrafenberg (Dr. J.Staude, Astrophysikalisches Institut Potsdam, Telegrafenberg, D-14473 Potsdam, Tel. (0331) 288 2300, Fax 288 2310) ........................................................................... Memorials --------- On the 18th of October 1993 a memorial plaque was fixed on the front of the main post-office in Klaipeda (former Memel in East-Prussia/Germany, present Lithuania) for Friedrich Wilhelm August Argelander (1799-1875) with a special relief made after a drawing by Honeck. At this place stood the house of the Argelander Family. The memorial plaque has been initiated by the German Aennchen-von-Tharau-Association. On the 19 March 1994 the University/Highschool Duisburg was renamed in "Gerhard-Mercator-Universitaet-Gesamthochschule". In Duisburg on the grounds of the Salvator church the grave of Gerhard Mercator (1512-1594) can be seen, in addition, a wooden epitaph offers remembrance to him in the choir of the church. (Source: Willi Weih, Gerhard Mercator zum 400. Todestag, Vermessungsingenieur 45 (1994) 4, pp. 164f.) ........................................................................... News Books ---------- Albani, Matthias: Astronomie und Schoepfungsglaube. Untersuchungen zum astronomischen Henochbuch [Astronomy and Creation Beliefs. Examinations into astronomical book of Henoch]. Neukirchen-Vluyn: Neukirchener Verlag des Erziehungsvereins, 1994. ca. 320 pp., ISBN 3-7887-1482-4, ca. DM 84,- (= Wiss. Monogr. z. AT u. NT, 68) Bedini, Silvio A.: Science and instruments in seventeenth-century Italy. Aldershot: Variorum, 1994. Pp. 352, ISBN 0-86078-442-8, GBP 57.50 (hardback). (= Collected Studies Series, CS449) [On telescopes, the instruments of Galileo Galilei, optical workshops etc.] Beller, M.; Cohen, R.pp.; Renn, Juergen (Eds.): Einstein in context. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993. Pp. 368, ISBN 0-521-44834-4, GBP 30, $ 37.95 (pb) [contains also a discussion of attempts by the American astronomer C.E.St.John to verify the gravitational redshift-effect in solar lines] Review: D.J.Raine: The Observatory 114 (1994) 1121, 179 Burnett, Charles; Yamamoto, Keiji; Yano, Michio (Ed.): Abu Ma'sar: The abbreviation of the introduction to astrology. Together with the Medieval Latin translation of Adelard of Bath. Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1994. Pp. VIII, 170, ISBN 90-04-09997-2, HFl 100.00 (= Islamic Philosophy, Theology and Science, 15) Buschmann, Ernst (Hrsg.): Aus Leben und Werk von Johann Jacob Baeyer [From the life and works of Johann Jacob Baeyer]. Frankfurt a.M.: Verlag des Instituts fuer Angewandte Geodaesie, 1994. 186 pp. (= Nachrichten aus dem Karten- und Vermessungswesen, Reihe I, Heft Nr. 112) [Distribution: Institut fuer Angewandte Geodaesie, Aussenstelle Berlin, Stauffenbergstrasse 13, D-10785 Berlin; contains also: correspondence with astronomers F.W.Bessel and W.Foerster, excerpts from letters by A.v.Humboldt and Otto Struve, material about Baeyers relations with Wilhelm Struve and P.A.Hansen] Davidson, Norman: Sky phenomena. A guide to naked-eye observations of the stars. Edinburgh: Floris Books, 1993. Pp. 228, ISBN 0-863-15168-X, GBP 12.99 (softbound) [contains also anecdotes about the personalities and events associated with astronomical discoveries, as well as a collection of poems from ancient civilizations to modern times (43 pp.)] Review: M.A.Hapgood: The Observatory 114 (1994) 1120, 122-123 De reizende astronoom. Nederlandse sterrenkundige expedities naar de Oost en de West. [The travalling astronomer. Netherlands astronomical expeditions to the east and to the west]. Leiden: Museum Boerhaave, 1993. Die Uhren des Erzbischofs Firmian [The clocks of Arch-Bishop Firmian]. Salzburg: Salzburger Museum Carlino Augusteum, 1994. OeS 75.- (= Barockberichte, 10) [Also, astronomical clocks and sun dials] Felber, Hans-Joachim (Hrsg.): Briefwechsel zwischen Alexander von Humboldt und Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel [Correspondence between Alexander von Humboldt and Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel]. Berlin: Akademie-Verlag, 1994. 249 pp., ISBN 3-05-001915-8, Gb DM 120,- (= Beitraege zur Alexander-von-Humboldt-Forschung, 10) Ferrari d'Occhieppo, Konradin: Der Stern von Bethlehem in astronomischer Sicht. Legende oder Tatsache? [The Star of Bethlehem in astronomical views. Legend or Fact?] Giessen: Brunnen-Verlag, 1994. 180 pp., ISBN 3-7655-9803-8, Pb DM 24,80 (= TVG Stud. z. bibl. Archaeol. u. Zeitgesch., 803) Ferrari d'Occhieppo, Konradin: Der Stern von Bethlehem. Aus der Sicht der Astronomie beschrieben und erklaert [The Star of Bethlehem. Written and explained from the viewpoint of Astronomy]. Berlin: Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag, 1994. ISBN 3-548-23550-6, Pb DM 9,90 (= Ullstein Buecher, 23550) Hall, A. Rupert: All was light. An introduction to Newton's Opticks. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993. Pp. 252, ISBN 0-198-53985-1, GBP 35 (hb) Review: R.V.Willstrop: The Observatory 114 (1994) 1121, 178-179 Hall, A. Rupert: Newton, his friends & his foes. Aldershot: Variorum, 1993. Pp. 344, ISBN 0-86078-347-2, GBP 49.50 (Hardback) (= Collected Studies Series, CS390) [on Newton, Grimaldi, Fabri, Hooke, More, Huygens, Leibniz] Herrmann, Dieter B.: Ejnar Hertzsprung - Pionier der Sternforschung [Ejnar Hertzsprung - Pionier of Stellar Exploration]. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer-Verlag, 1994. 290 pp., 40 illus., ISBN 3-540-57688-6, Geb. DM 58,- Husty, Peter: Zeit & Mass. Sonnenuhren und wissenschaftliche Geraete. Zum 250. Todesjahr des Salzburger Erzbischofs Leopold Anton Freiherr von Firmian (1727-1744). Katalog zur 177. Sonderausstellung [Time and Measure. Sun dials and scientific devices. In remembrance of the 250th anniversary of the death of the Archbishop of Salzburg Leopold Anton Freiherr von Firmian (1727-1744). Catalogue to the special 177th exhibit]. Salzburg: Salzburger Museum Carlino Augusteum, 1994. 96 pp., 89 illus., OeS 200.- [Larcher, Verena (Ed.):] Rudolf Wolfs Jugendtagebuch 1835 - 1841 [Rudolf Wolf's diary as a youth, 1835 - 1841]. Zuerich: ETH-Bibliothek, 1994. 129 pp. (= Schriftenreihe der ETH-Bibliothek, 30) Lutstorf, Heinz Theo: Professor Rudolf Wolf und seine Zeit. 1816-1893. Nach bibliothekseigenen, teilweise nichtpublizierten Quellen dargestellt [Professor Rudolf Wolf and his time. 1816-1893. According to original library, and partly unpublished sources]. Zuerich: ETH-Bibliothek, 1993. 57 pp. (= Schriftenreihe der ETH-Bibliothek, 31) Macdonald, Angus; Morrison-Low, A.D.: A heavenly library: treasures from the Royal Observatory's Crawford Collection. With contributions by Owen Gingerich, Angus Macdonald, A.D. Morrison-Low and Liba C. Taub. Edinburgh: Royal Observatory, 1994. Pp. 72, ill., ISBN 0-902553-37-2, GBP 12.50 + GBP 2.00 p+p [Copies can be ordered from: Miss Madge Maclean, Museum Shop, National Museums of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh EH1 1JF, Great Britain] Meinel, Christoph; Voswinckel, Peter (Eds.): Medizin, Naturwissenschaft, Technik und Nationalsozialismus. Kontinuitaeten und Diskontinuitaeten [Medicine, Science, Technology and National-Socialism. Continuities and Discontinuities]. Stuttgart: Verlag fuer Geschichte der Naturwissenschaften und der Technik, 1994. 332 pp., ISBN 3-928186-24-8, Bound DM 55,- [Contains, among other topics: A.Hermann: Das Zeisswerk im Dritten Reich [Optical Manufacturers Zeiss in the Third Reich]; G.Wolfschmidt: Sonnenphysik im Zweiten Weltkrieg: Wissenschaft oder Kriegsforschung? [Solar Physics in the Second World War: Science or Military research?]; B.Nagel: Die Welteislehre: Ihre Geschichte und ihre Bedeutung im "Dritten Reich" [The World-Ice-Theory: Its History and their meaning in the Third Reich]; K.Hentschel und M.Renneberg: "Ausschaltung" oder "Verteidigung" der allgemeinen Relativitaetstheorie - Interpretation einer Kosmologen-Karriere im Nationalsozialismus ["Shut-down" or "Defense" of the general theory of relativity - Interpretation of a cosmological career in National-Socialism; about Otto Heckmann]] Moore, Patrick: Fireside astronomy. An anecdotal tour through the history and lore of astronomy. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons, 1993. Pp. XII, 212, ISBN 0-471-94202-2, GBP 9.95, $ 14.95 (pb) [First published in 1992] Review: D.Stickland: The Observatory 114 (1994) 1121, 180 North, John D.: Fontana history of astronomy and cosmology. Fontana Press, 1994. Pp. xxvii, 697, ISBN 0-00-68177-6, GBP 12.99 (pb) Review: A.Kinder: J. Brit. Astron. Assoc. 104 (1994) 4, 192 Oestmann, Guenther: Schicksalsdeutung und Astronomie. Der Himmelsglobus des Johannes Stoeffler von 1493. Mit Beitraegen von Elly Dekker und Peter Schiller. Ausstellungskatalog [Meaning of destiny and astronomy. The celestial globe of Johannes Stoeffler of 1493. With contributions by Elly Dekker and Peter Schiller. Exhibit catalogue]. Stuttgart: Wuerttembergisches Landesmuseum, 1993. 71 pp., ISBN 3-929055-28-7, Pb DM 20,- Price, Fred W.: The planet observer's handbook. Cambridge, New York, Melbourne: Cambridge University Press, 1994. Pp. xix, 410, ill., bibl., indexes, ISBN 0-521-44257-5 [contains some chapters on history of planet observations] Sabra, A.I.: Optics, astronomy and logic. Studies in arabic science and philosophy. Aldershot: Variorum, 1994. Pp. 336, ISBN 0-86079-435-5, GBP 47.50 (Hardback). (= Collected Studies Series, CS444) Samso, Julio: Islamic astronomy and Medieval Spain. Aldershot: Variorum, 1994. Pp. 352, ISBN 0-86078-309-X, GBP 49.50 (Hardback). (= Collected Studies Series, CS428) Schoener, Christoph: Mathematik und Astronomie an der Universitaet Ingolstadt im 15. und 16. Jahrhundert [Mathematics and Astronomy at the University of Ingolstadt in the 15th and 16th centuries]. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, 1994. 546 pp., ISBN 3-428-08118-8, Pb DM 124,- (= Ludovico Maximilianea Forsch., 13) Smoller, Laura Ackerman: History, prophecy, and the stars. The christian astrology of Pierre d'Ailly, 1350-1420. Ewing, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1994. Pp. 296, ill., ISBN 0-691-08788-1, GBP 26.50, $ 40.00 (cloth) Spalinger, Anthony: Revolutions in time: Studies in ancient Egyptian calendrics. San Antonio (TX): Van Siclen Books, 1994. ISBN 0-933175-36-1 (= Varia Aegyptiaca Supplement, 6) Stephenson, Bruce: The music of the heavens. Kepler's harmonic astronomy. Ewing, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1994. Pp. 296, ill., ISBN 0-691-03439-7, GBP 30.00, $ 45.00 Stephenson, Bruce: Kepler's physical astronomy. Ewing, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1994. Pp. 218, ill., ISBN 0-691-03652-7, GBP 12.95, $ 18.00 (pb) Tennant, Catherine: The Box of Stars. London: Chatto & Windus, 1993. Pp. 87, boxed with 32 charts, ISBN 0-701-16009-8, GBP 14.99 (pb) [reprint of 32 cards from 1825 with constellations visible from the British Empire + paperback book with commentaries concentrating on mythology and astrology] Review: D.W.Hughes: The Observatory 114 (1994) 1120, 123 Tihon, Anne: Etudes d'astronomie byzantine. Aldershot: Variorum, 1994. Pp. 336, ISBN 0-86078-437-1, GBP 53.50 (Hardback). (= Collected Studies Series, CS454) Trejo, Jesus Galindo: Arqueoastronomia en la America Antigua. Madrid: Editorial Equipo Sirius, 1994. ISBN 968-823-238-6 (= Coleccion la ciencia y la tecnologia en la historia) Turner, Anthony J.: Of time and measurement. Studies in the history of horology and fine technology. Aldershot: Variorum, 1994. Pp. 336, ISBN 0-86078-378-2, GBP 55.00 (Hardback). (= Collected Studies Series, CS407) [on clocks, watches, sun-dials, mathematical instruments, the reflecting telescope etc. in antiquity and in England and France] van Gent, R.H.: De hemel in de hand. Twee astrolaben van het Museum Boerhaave/The portable universe. Two astrolabes of the Museum Boerhaave. Leiden: Museum Boerhaave, 1994. Wallerstein, George; Noriaga-Crespo, Alberto (Eds.): Stellar and circumstellar astrophysics. Proceedings of a conference held at the University of Washington, 9-11 September 1993, in honor of the 70th birthdays of Karl-Heinz Bohm and Erika Bohm-Vitense. San Francisco, Ca.: Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 1994. Pp. xiii, 215, ISBN 0-937707-76-7 (= Astronomical Society of the Pacific Conference Series, Vol. 57) [contains also: G.H.Herbig: The contributions of the Boehms to stellar and circumstellar astrophysics; H.C.Harris: Astronomy graduates during the Boehm years: achievements in a competitive job market] ........................................................................... Expressions of thanks ----------- --------- For information we would like to express thanks to: M.Blyzinsky (London), P.Brosche (Daun), K.-D.Herbst (Jena), G.Jasniewicz (Strasbourg), E.Lamla (Bonn), R.A.McCutcheon (USA), A.Spalinger (Los Angeles), W.Schroeder (Bremen), M.Strohbusch (Potsdam), G.Wolfschmidt (Munich). ........................................................................... IMPRINT ------- Electronic Newsletter for the History of Astronomy (ENHA) Published by the Working Group for the History of Astronomy in the Astronomische Gesellschaft A translation of "Elektronische Mitteilungen zur Astronomiegeschichte" Editor: Dr. Wolfgang R. Dick <wdi@potsdam.ifag.de> Translated by: Mr. Donald Bellunduno <76450.1741@compuserve.com> All news which is not mentioned by name are editorial contributions. Articles as well as information for the several sections will be gladly received. Subscription for the ENHA is free. In order to obtain a subscription inside Germany, one must first obtain a subscription for the printed Mitteilungen zur Astronomiegeschichte (MA). [Mitteilungen zur Astronomiegeschichte: Price: DM 1.50 / issue plus postage and packing costs outside Germany: free Subscription: Send in DM 2.50 (one issue) or DM 5.00 (Nos. 4-5) in stamps to the editor Editor: Dr. W. R. Dick, Otterkiez 14, D-14478 Potsdam, Germany, Tel.: (+331) 863199 ] Astronomische Gesellschaft / Astronomical Society: Chairman: Prof. Dr. Hanns Ruder, University of Tuebingen, Theoretical Astrophysics and Computational Physics, Auf der Morgenstelle 10, D-72076 Tuebingen Secretary: Dr. G. Klare, Landessternwarte, Koenigstuhl, D-69117 Heidelberg Arbeitskreis Astronomiegeschichte / Working Group for the History of Astronomy: Chairman: Prof. Dr. Peter Brosche, Observatorium Hoher List der Sternwarte der Universitaet Bonn, D-54550 Daun, Germany, Tel.: (+6592) 2150, Fax: (+6592) 2937 Secretary: Dr. Wolfgang R. Dick, Institut fuer Angewandte Geodaesie, Aussenstelle Potsdam, Postfach 60 08 08, D-14408 Potsdam, Germany, Tel.: (+331) 316 619, E-mail: wdi@potsdam.ifag.de (in the event I am not reachable at this address, please try the following address: dick@gfz-potsdam.de) Secretary for Public Relations: Dr. Gudrun Wolfschmidt, Deutsches Museum, Museumsinsel 1, D-80538 Muenchen, Germany, Tel.: (+89) 2179 277, Fax: (+89) 2179 324, E-mail: t7911ac@sunmail.lrz-muenchen.de Bank Acct. of the Working Group of the Astronomische Gesellschaft: Acct # 261 917, Sparkasse Mannheim (BLZ 670 501 01) Contributions from foreign countries, please sign with: "Fuer Arbeitskreis Astronomiegeschichte" to: acct # 162 18-203, Postgiroamt Hamburg, BLZ 200 400 20 ************************************************************************ Addendum by the translator: --------------------------- New astronomical books in review in North America ------------------------------------------------- THE SKY- A USER'S GUIDE by David H. Levy Cambridge University Press, Great Britain 1993 ISBN 0 521 45958 3 paperback THE TREASURY OF THE ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITTANICA Clifton Fadiman, General Editor, Bruce L. Felknor and Robert McHenry, Contributing Editors Viking Penquin, New York 1992 AC5.T74 1992 031--dc20 92-54069 ISBN 0 670 83568 4 AT HOME IN THE UNIVERSE by John Archibald Wheeler published by American Institute of Physics 1994 Q158.5.W44 1992 500--dc20 ISBN 0-88318-862-7 EINSTEIN, A LIFE IN SCIENCE by Michael White and John Gribbin published by Dutton (Penquin Books) QC16.E5W47 1994 530'.092--dc20 [B] 93-42626 CIP ISBN 0-525-93750-1 ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Quoting from Levy's The Sky - A User's Guide, 9 Jupiter-- "Late one evening during the summer of 1964, I was attempting to observe Jupiter through a 20 cm reflector. The giant planet was rising, ant it had just cleared my neighbor's house -- not a appropriate viewing time, since hot air rising from the roof would make Jupiter's appearance unsharp. This would be a quick look before bed. "In any event, the shimmering planet caught my attention more than I had expected, for it was a minute or so before I noticed a police car parked in front of the house. Two officers emerged and started walking toward me. From their almost military gait, I assumed that this would be an official visit. They quickly reached the telescope, and then halted. I looked at them; they looked at me. "One officer broke the silence; Excuse me, sir, would you mind if a couple of nosy policemen looked at Jupiter?' "The brief look those men had that night showed an object that would have astonished ancient observers, and confirmed their view that it was king of planets. Its symbol represents a modified Z standing for Zeus. Jupiter leads our discussion of planets because it usually is the easiest to find and the richest to observe. The other planets are arranged here in the order of how easy each one is to find and begin to observe, easiest to hardest. 9.1 Jupiter and its moons-- "When Galileo first noticed the movements of three, and then four, objects near Jupiter, he realized that they had to be moons that orbit Jupiter in much the same way our own Moon orbits us. He was thrilled by these delicate movements and announced then enthusiastically. It was years later that these and other discoveries led the Roman Catholic Church to force him to recant, to deny the discoveries and their implications. The Earth must remain safely at the center of things. "The names of Galileo's moons are Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto, and with much fainter Amalthea, found by Barnard in 1892, these are the only moons to have been discovered visually. The Voyager spacecrafts found exciting worlds -- active volcanoes on Io, a smooth covering of ice on Europa, the craters and complex grooves of Ganymede, and heavily cratered Callisto. "Why not recall Galileo's work by recording the positions of the Galilean moons for a month or so? Such a project has no scientific value, of course, and you can even check your own identifications with the charts in Sky & Telescope [, the Astronomical Almanac,] or the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada's Observer's Handbook. But just this once, forget these printed charts and try to figure out which moon is which. Io will appear to move the most quickly, completing on orbit in just 1.77 days. After you have finished your 30-day moonwatch you can check one of the sources to see how well you did. If you have a primarily mathematical interest in observing, this observing project will acquaint you with the subject of orbital mechanics. If your interest is at all romantic, you will have just made four lifelong friends. 9.2 Seeing-- "Learning to see detail on a distant planet is really an art form, as William Herschel wrote over 200 years ago: Seeing is in some respects an art which must be learnt. To make a person see with such power is nearly the same as if I were asked to make him play one of Handel's fugues upon the organ. Many a night have I been practicing to see, and it would be strange if one did not acquire a certain dexterity by such constant practice. "To see any real detail even on this largest of planets, you need a least a good 10 cm refractor or a 15 cm reflector telescope. Smaller telescopes will show some detail, but not really enough to record. Remember also that good planetary observation requires that Earth's atmosphere be steady. Observing the details of planets require a sharp eye that can pick up details at the very limit of visibility, like reading the words on distant road signs. "Seeing is a measure of the steadiness of the image of an object in the sky. If out atmosphere is unsteady, it will be impossible to detect these hard-to-see details. It is related to, though not the same as, scintillation, the rapid brightness changes we see in the twinkling of stars. Sometimes poor seeing results from turbulence in the upper atmosphere, and on other nights the problem may lie in the atmosphere just above you. On one night I was observing from a site high in some mountains. Although it was very windy, the seeing was good and planetary details were sharp and clear. Then I returned home and started observing again from my own site. The wind was gone and the session was much more comfortable, but the seeing had completely deteriorated! Probably I was trying to observe through that wind raging not far above me. "I have found that a hazy night usually is a still night with good 'seeing' for planets. Does this mean that the murky skies over cities on humid nights may be ideal for good planetary observation? Quite possibly; if the murk is swamping everything fainter than the planets and the brightest stars, and if there are no strong upper-atmosphere winds, you might take advantage of a fine night for planetary observation. "Observers in Europe favor a scale developed by the planetary observer Eugenios Antiniadi (1870-1944), who devised a five-point system where 'I' represents a perfectly steady image, 'II' involves excellent moments lasting for several seconds, 'III' refers to average seeing where a good image is frequently interrupted by fuzz periods, 'IV' involves almost constant 'fuzzing out' of the image, and 'V' is so bad that planetary detail is not really visible at all....". ________________ The subtitle of The Treasury Of The Encyclopedia Brittanica; Celebrating 225 Years Of The Human Mind At Its Best is not a bad description of this volume, which, by its very nature is hard to review. The Treasury Of The Encyclopedia Brittanica is a collection of some of the gems of unsurpassed eloquence, erudition, and entertainment from the Brittanica's fifteen editions. T. E. Lawrence on Guerrilla Warfare - For the editor of the 14th edition (1929) it must have been a small triumph to persuade Lawrence of Arabia (18881935) to write the article "Guerrilla Warfare." He was one of the few Brittanica writers who was also a legend. His contribution (given in full) as as dashing as he was. The current edition contains an excellent treatment by Stanley Weintraub of this bafflingly complex archaeologist-warrior-writer. Carl Sagan on Life, Terrestrial and Otherwise - Carl Sagan (1934 ) is one of a small group of distinguished American scientists able to communicate with the general public. Some readers may recall with pleasure the remarkable television series Cosmos (1980) which he narrated and co-produced. His book of the same title is the best-selling science volume of all time [with the possible exception of Hawking's A Brief History of Time]. Since 1968 he has been Director of the Laboratory for Planetary Studies at Cornell University, where he is the David Duncan Professor of Astronomy. Among his main publications three have won wide popular audiences: The Dragons of Venice (1977), Broca's Brain (1979). and Contact (1985). He is particularly interested in the possibilities of intelligent extraterrestrial life forms. His magisterial seventeen-page article on Life first appeared in the 1984 issue of the present 15th edition. From it we have excerpted the introduction and part of the concluding section, which deal respectively with definitions of life and with extraterrestrial life. George Bernard Shaw on Socialism - This forceful, almost hortatory essay appeared in the 13th edition (1926) and was so highly regarded that it was carried over into the 14th (1929). The article is nearly as interesting read between the lines, for there much is suggested about the general state of the world in the 1920's. Shaw, by the way, was proud to point out that in his youth he had read the 9th edition in its entirety, excepting only the scientific articles. (R. McH.) We reproduce the whole of this piece by George Bernard Shaw (18561950) for two reasons. First, it is a superb piece of writing. Second, in view of socialism's contemporary disarray, it is alive with accidental irony Shaw could not possibly have foreseen. Bertrand Russell on The Philosophical Consequences of Relativity - Not many scientists can write lucidly for the lay reader about such matters as the theory of relativity. On who could was the philosopher- logician-mathematician Bertrand Russell, 3rd Earl Russell. In his long virtually hyperactive life Lord Russell spread scientific understanding as well as philosophical inquiry and reflection, atheism, pacifism, and left-wing socialist activism. His Britannica article on The Philosophical Consequences of Relativity (13th edition, 1926) clarified the Space-time concept. It was written while he was completing a popular book, The ABC of Relativity. (B.L.F.) Today we are all Einsteinians. Our view of the cosmos and to a degree man's place in it is as unconsciously colored and conditioned by relativity as that of our not-too-remote ancestors was by Newtonian theory. It's interesting therefore to note how a first-class mind viewed the philosophical rather than the scientific consequences of relativity almost three-quarters of a century ago. Particularly pertinent, in view of our era's love affair with technology, is the last paragraph. In the current Britannica the account of the mathematician, philosopher, and publicist Bertrand Russell extends over five columns, just as his life (18721970) extended over almost a century. The reader is referred to it. Among Russell's voluminous productions we call attention to what may oddly enough in the end turn out to be his masterpiece, his three-volume Autobiography. ________________ Less than four years after the November 24, 1859, publication of The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin (1863) wrote to Joseph Dalton Hooker, "It is mere rubbish, thinking at present of the origin of life; one might as well think of the origin of matter." Today, thanks not least to Darwin himself, we possess an attractive and actively investigated scenario for the origin of life. Will we ever know anything about the still deeper issue, what is the origin of matter? Leibniz put it in his famous words, "Why is there something rather than nothing?" William James, translated the "why" to the more meaningful "how": "How comes the world to be here...?" We ask today. "How did the universe come into being?" realizing full well that how properly to ask the question is also a part of the question. On can even believe that one can only then state the issue in the right words when one knows the answer. Or is there an answer? Is the mystery of genesis forever beyond explanation? The investigator of today is not content to let a major question remain forever in the air, the football of endless indecisive games. Either it can be ruled out or it must be answered: that is his credo. Something may rule out the question as meaningless, as quantum mechanics rules out any possibility to find out simultaneous values for the position and momentum of an electron. Or something may establish the issue to be undecidable, as Gdel has proved certain propositions to be undecidable. But in the absence, as here, of some clear indication that the question is meaningless or undecidable, the question must be faced ant the relevant evidence sought out. Wheeler's At Home In The Universe presents a feast of engaging essays formed of reminiscence, science, and sometimes conjecture, providing intimate glimpses of Einstein, Bohr, and other giants in the field who were his friends and collaborators. He writes of debate and discussions with Bohr that formed the cornerstone of nuclear fission theory, long talks with Einstein in his upstairs study at Princeton, and the eloquence and nobility of Hermann Weyl. He sees in these and other great physicists--Marie Curie, Hideki Yukawa, and Hendrik Anthony Kramers--exemplars of the scientific spirit. ________________ The date was Thursday 6 November 1919; the occasion, a joint meeting of the Royal Society and the Royal Astronomical Society in the main hall of Burlington House, London. An air of excitement and expectancy permeated the Georgian spledour of the room. The scientists who had packed into the hall fell silent as the president of the Royal Society, J. J. Thompson, rose to address the meeting. For a moment he paused and glanced up at the portrait of Isaac Newton hanging high above the gathering. The meeting had been called to make the announcement the scientific world had been waiting for -- the findings of Arthur Eddington, recently returned from observation of the solar eclipse at Principe, west Africa. The evidence supported a scientific theory which would alter human perception as dramatically as had Newton's breakthroughs two and a half centuries earlier. Within twenty-four hours of the announcement, Albert Einstein's theory would become public property, his work described in newspapers around the world and his Berlin home besieged by journalists. In Burlington House the mood, as described by a member of the audience, the philosopher Alfred Whitehead, was "that of a Greek drama". The gathered scientists were fully aware of the historic importance of the occasion. First J. J. Thompson announced the purpose of the meeting and reiterated the importance of relativity in modern physics, declaring that Einstein's theory of relativity was "the greatest discovery in connection with gravitation since Newton". Next to take the podium was the Astronomer Royal, Sir Frank Dyson. To a hushed gathering he made the announcement verifying Einstein's theory--that the bending of light by the gravitational field of the Sun observed during the recent solar eclipse did not tally with Newton's theory but coincided almost exactly with Einstein's predicted value. At the end of the 1980's, a satellite known as COBE (Cosmic Background Explorer) was launched by NASA to study the background radiation with more precision than ever before. In 1992, the NASA team announced that they had discovered exactly the kinds of ripples in time that the theory had predicted. It was headline news around the world--the combination of Einstein's general theory, the Big Bang model, and the added ingredient of dark matter, had been vindicated. This was, and is, the most compelling evidence ever that the universe we live in is described by the equations of Albert Einstein. In White and Gribbin's Einstein, we learn of Einstein's possible schizophrenia early in life, his two marriages, his friendships with such figures as Franz Kafka and Bertrand Russell, and the search for security and sanctuary that led him from one country to another in Europe, and then from Nazi Germany to his tenure as a "scientific saint" in America. White portrays Einstein as a man brimming with paradoxes--a pacifist who advocated the creation of an atomic weapons program, a man who hated regimentation but who was beguiled by the strict beauty of mathematics, an atheist and a dedicated Zionist, a figure revered by the world yet kept under surveillance by the FBI. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Space Anniversaries (from the SPACE CALENDAR) --------------------------------------------- (Additions to the list in ENHA No. 6) ========================= SPACE CALENDAR November 2, 1994 ========================= December 1994 Dec 24 - 15th Anniversary (1979), 1st Ariane Launch August 1995 Aug 10 - 5th Anniversary (1990), Magellan Venus Orbit Insertion Aug 20 - 20th Anniversary (1975), Viking 1 Launch (Mars Lander/Orbiter) Aug 21 - 30th Anniversary (1965), Gemini 5 Launch ___ _____ ___ /_ /| /____/ \ /_ /| Ron Baalke | baalke@kelvin.jpl.nasa.gov | | | | __ \ /| | | | JPL/Telos | ___| | | | |__) |/ | | |__ Galileo S-Band | If you don't know where you're /___| | | | ___/ | |/__ /| Pasadena, CA | going, you'll end up somewhere |_____|/ |_|/ |_____|/ | else. Yogi Berra.