The world of Islam is that of a rich and prosperous culture, contributing a vast array of advances in fields such as the arts and sciences, including one of many – astronomy. A major astronomical development was the use of the astrolabe, which helped to shape the ever growing way of Islamic life. Astrolabes are an astronomical instrument used by astronomers, navigators, and astrologers alike. They were originally invented by the Greeks to chart the stars, however, during the Abbasid Dynasty, the Abbasids were the first to use and develop them for various other purposes to improve their lives as Arabs. The earliest surviving Islamic astrolabes date back to the ninth century.
Throughout the ages, many people have used astronomy to help them learn about the universe, our own planet, and even make predictions about life itself. Understanding astronomy means understanding where it originated, the different groups/cultures that used it, and modern purposes of the science of the stars. Where did astronomy originate? According to the Department of Astronomy, the earliest people to keep astronomical records where the Akkadians (they lived in what is later known as the northern part of Babylon). The earliest date is from around 2,500 B.C.
(Thompson 17) Astrology has played an important role in our civilization. Starting with Adam and even being present in today’s society. Different civilizations seemed to be practicing astrology independetely. People noticed the Sun in particular had a change on how crops grew. Many people viewed astronomy and astrology as a similar science until the 1500s.
Nicholaus Copernicus’ theory regarding the movement of the planets and the position of the sun and Earth has had a profound effect on the scientific understanding of the solar system. His ideas were originally met with opposition due to religious beliefs of the time. By publishing his theory, Copernicus set the stage for a drastic and positive change in scientific and religious beliefs. Nicholaus Copernicus is one of the most well known astronomers of all time. He is even labeled as the founder of modern astronomy for the proposition of his heliocentric theory (“Nicolaus Copernicus”, Scientists: Their Lives and Works).
Later Greek scientists, such as Archimedes, developed complicated models of the heavens-celestial spheres-that illustrated the "wandering" of the sun, the moon, and the planets against the fixed position of the stars. Shortly after Archimedes, Ctesibus created the Clepsydra in the 2nd century BC. A more elaborate version of the common water clock, the Clepsydra was quite popular in ancient Greece. However, the development of stereography by Hipparchos in 150 BC. radically altered physical representations of the heavens.
The most important application of mathematics was in astronomy since it helped guide them in the desert. The translated works of the Greek astronomer Ptolemy greatly helped in inspiring the Arabs to study astronomy. The Arabs scientists made use of a Greek device known as an astrolabe to help them compute “the position of the stars and the movement of the planets” and also helped them to keep track of time. The Arab scientists have done a brilliant job of preserving the science and knowledge of the Greeks. The works of scholars such as Al Rhazi, Ibn Sina, Ibn Rhusd, etc.
Astrologists combined their findings with data from Greek scientists such as Ptolemy to refine and edit older theories, as well as come up with their own. A notable Islamic astronomer was Thabit Ibn Qurra, who developed a theory as to why equinoxes varied from year to year. He was among the first to study the speed and velocity of moving objects, and added a ninth planet to Ptolemy’s model of the planets. It was not only due to individual efforts that allowed the Golden Age of Islam to uncover so much about astronomy, but a collaborative effort as well. A huge astronomy project sponsored by caliph al-Mamun in the capital of Baghdad and the major city of Damascus discovered and fixed inconsistencies in several older theories and produced the Zij al-mumtahan, a corrected version of Ptolemy’s data.
Astronomy: An In-Depth Look From Origin to Present Day Of all the sciences that seek to explain the rules that govern our world (astronomy, chemistry, earth science, physics, and biology), astronomy has existed the longest. It is naturally connected with religion and mythology due to the mystery of the cosmos. According to Plato, “astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another” (Brainy Quotes). Consequently, humans have been fascinated with the stars for countless millennia. This fascination evolved from pre-historic cultures worshipping solar eclipses to modern astronomy clubs like the Astronomy Society at UCF studying the birth of stars that are millions of light years away.
Mathematical Impacts The art of mathematics is an intrinsic part of the many physical sciences which humanity strives to learn; it began as a way to explain the celestial guides, which became the science of astronomy and astrophysics. This essay will explain the use of math in astronomy, chemistry, physics, and their relation. The study of astronomy is the oldest of the physical sciences it began as an inspiration. For the purpose of this essay, the study will begin with the ancient’s knowledge of this science. They had many different views on how those nocturnal guides worked.
Copernicus has been named one of the most influential people this millennia by Time Magazine; in part for his movements in though during the scientific revolution; creating a basis for modern astronomy and challenging the Church (of the 15th century) to lead the way to a reform in thinking. He did so by disproving (mathematically) a theory of the heavens that had existed for almost 14 centuries, established by a man named Charles Ptolemy in 250 AD. Copernicus revolutionized astronomy by creating a solid basis for it to stand on, discovering that "The Earth was not the centre of the cosmos, but rather one celestial body among many, as it became subject to mathematical description." He compiled a manuscript of his theories, including the retrogressive behaviour of the planets, cause by the Earth's daily rotation on its axis and yearly revolution around the sun. Much of Copernicus' influence was rooted in the minds of men for years, perhaps because his theories were not fully understood or appreciated until many years after his death in 1543.