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Discovery of the First Asteroid, Ceres

Historical Studies in Asteroid Research

Authors: Cunningham, Clifford J.

  • Relates Piazzi's discovery of the first asteroid, Ceres, as set out in relevant correspondence between scientists and Piazzis groundbreaking two monographs
  • Includes the first English translations of multiple primary sources, including sections of two books by Johann Bode and Johann Schroeter that were written in German
  • Based on extensive archival research including press reports on the discovery of Ceres in 1801 and its recovery in 1802
  • Heavily revised, this version of a 2002 book self-published by the author via Star Lab Press as The First Asteroid: Ceres 1801-2001 (09708162-2-7) includes new opening sections, newly translated documents that did not appear in the earlier version, and many revisions to correct errors in the original translations
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eBook 107,09 €
price for Italia (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-21777-2
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 135,19 €
price for Italia (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-21776-5
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

Based on extensive primary sources, many never previously translated into English, this is the definitive account of the origins of Ceres as it went from being classified as a new planet to reclassification as the first of a previously unknown group of celestial objects. Cunningham opens this critical moment of astronomical discovery to full modern analysis for the first time. This book includes all the voluminous correspondence, translated into English, between the astronomers of Europe about the startling discovery of Ceres by Piazzi in 1801. It covers the period up to March 1802, at which time Pallas was discovered. Also included are Piazzi’s two monographs about Ceres, and the sections of two books dealing with Ceres, one by Johann Bode, the other by Johann Schroeter. The origin of the word ‘asteroid’ is explained, along with several chapters on the antecedents of the story going back to ancient Greek times. The formulation of Bode’s Law is given, as are the details on the efforts of Baron von Zach to organize a search for the supposed missing planet between Mars and Jupiter. Examples of verse created to commemorate the great discovery are included in this first volume. The author, who has a PhD in the History of Astronomy, is a dedicated scholar of the story of asteroids and his research on the discovery of Ceres is comprehensive and fully sourced. The discovery came at a time when rival astronomers were in hot competition with each other, and when the true nature of these celestial bodies was not yet known. With astronomers in France, Italy and beyond vying to understand and receive credit for the new class of astral bodies, drama was not in short supply--nor were scientific advances.

About the authors

Clifford J. Cunningham did his Ph.D. work in the history of astronomy at James Cook University and the University of Southern Queensland in Australia, and he is affiliated with the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand. He has written or edited 13 books on the history of astronomy, and his papers have been published in many major journals, including Annals of Science, Journal for the History of Astronomy, Culture & Cosmos, Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, Studia Etymologica Cracoviensia, The Asian Journal of Physics and The Milton Quarterly. Asteroid (4276) was named Clifford in his honour by the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

Reviews

“The author has a PhD in the History of Astronomy, he is a dedicated scholar of the history of asteroids and his research on the discovery of Ceres is comprehensive and fully sourced. … Here, for the first time, you will find everything in a sigle place, together with the relative documentation like, for example, the letters that scientists exchanged each others. … the reading is enjoyable and engaging, even for the nonspecialists.” (Gabriella Bernardi, Astrocom et al., astrocometal.blogspot.de, November, 2016)


Table of contents (14 chapters)

  • The Unseen Planet

    Cunningham, Clifford

    Pages 1-23

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,44 €
  • The Discovery of Ceres

    Cunningham, Clifford

    Pages 25-39

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,44 €
  • The Recovery of Ceres

    Cunningham, Clifford

    Pages 41-56

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,44 €
  • The Great Nomenclature Controversy of 1801

    Cunningham, Clifford

    Pages 57-74

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,44 €
  • The Physical Properties of Ceres

    Cunningham, Clifford

    Pages 75-98

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,44 €

Buy this book

eBook 107,09 €
price for Italia (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-21777-2
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 135,19 €
price for Italia (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-21776-5
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Discovery of the First Asteroid, Ceres
Book Subtitle
Historical Studies in Asteroid Research
Authors
Copyright
2016
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Copyright Holder
Springer International Publishing Switzerland
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-21777-2
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-21777-2
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-21776-5
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIII, 333
Topics