Searching the Heavens and the Earth: The History of Jesuit Observatories / Edition 1

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Jesuits established a large number of astronomical, geophysical and meteorological observatories during the 17th and 18th centuries and again during the 19th and 20th centuries throughout the world. The history of these observatories has never been published in a complete form. Many early European astronomical observatories were established in Jesuit colleges. During the 17th and 18th centuries Jesuits were the first western scientists to enter into contact with China and India. It was through them that western astronomy was first introduced in these countries. They made early astronomical observations in India and China and they directed for 150 years the Imperial Observatory of Beijing. In the 19th and 20th centuries a new set of observatories were established. Besides astronomy these now included meteorology and geophysics. Jesuits established some of the earliest observatories in Africa, South America and the Far East. Jesuit observatories constitute an often forgotten chapter of the history of these sciences. This volume is aimed at all scientists and students who do not want to forget the Jesuit contributions to science.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

From the reviews:

"This compendium of information about astronomical and geophysical observatories founded or run by members of the Jesuit order since the 16th century … . It is filled with an enormous amount of data, and fascinating anecdotes … . Ultimately, this book is a resource … . Such a history of the Jesuit observatories, centered on an overarching theme with a careful selection and analysis of this wonderful compilation of data, remains to be written." (Guy Consolmagno, S.J, Archivum Historicum Societatis Iesu, Vol. 76, 2007)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402011894
  • Publisher: Springer Netherlands
  • Publication date: 10/28/2003
  • Series: Astrophysics and Space Science Library Series, #286
  • Edition description: 2003
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 373
  • Product dimensions: 7.16 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Table of Contents

I. History.- 1. A Jesuit tradition.- 2. Observatories in Jesuit colleges and universities in Europe (1540–1773).- 3. Jesuit astronomers in China, India and other missions (1540–1773).- 4. Europe; astronomy and geophysics (1814–2000).- 5. North America; the Jesuit Seismological Association (1814–2000).- 6. South America; hurricanes and earthquakes (1814–2000).- 7. Asia, Africa and Australia; the great mission observatories (1814–2000).- II. Jesuit Observatories, 1814–2000..- 1. Europe.- 2. North America.- 3. Central and South America.- 4. Africa, Asia and Australia.- III. Jesuit scientists, 1814–2000..- Bibliography of Part I, Chapters 1, 2 and 3..- Index by observatories.- Index by names.

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