DISCOVERY OF HIPPARCHUS LOST STAR CATALOG ON THE FARNESE ATLAS BRADLEY E. SCHAEFER Louisiana State U - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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DISCOVERY OF HIPPARCHUS LOST STAR CATALOG ON THE FARNESE ATLAS BRADLEY E. SCHAEFER Louisiana State U

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POSSIBLE DATES FOR OBSERVATIONS USED TO PLACE THE CONSTELLATIONS. c. ... Constellations positions shift slowly with the centuries (due to precession), so ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: DISCOVERY OF HIPPARCHUS LOST STAR CATALOG ON THE FARNESE ATLAS BRADLEY E. SCHAEFER Louisiana State U


1
DISCOVERY OF HIPPARCHUS LOST STAR CATALOG ON THE
FARNESE ATLASBRADLEY E. SCHAEFER(Louisiana
State University)
2
HIPPARCHUS -Greatest Astronomer of Antiquity
Rhodes fl. 140-125 BC Only surviving work is his
Commentary
  • First Star Catalog (1000 stars)
  • Discovered Precession
  • First Nova
  • First Model for Solar Lunar Motion
  • Best Planetary Observations to Date

3
  • FARNESE ATLAS SHOWS
  • 41 Constellations
  • (no stars)
  • Equator, Tropics
  • Colures
  • Arctic, Antarctic Circles

4
POSSIBLE DATES FOR OBSERVATIONS USED TO PLACE THE
CONSTELLATIONS
  • c. 150 AD Contemporary with Roman sculptor
  • c. 128 AD From Ptolemys Almagest
  • c. 275 BC From Aratus Phaenomena
  • c. 366 BC From Eudoxus Phaenomena
  • 113080 BC Assyrian observer who was source for
    Eudoxus and MUL.APIN

5
GET DATE FROM CONSTELLATION POSITIONS
  • Constellations positions shift slowly with the
    centuries (due to precession), so the depicted
    positions provide a clock

6
PRECESSION
7
DATE OF FARNESE ATLAS CONSTELLATION DATA
  • New photographs taken in Naples last June
  • New photos required as camera-globe distance
    must be known for photogrammetry
  • 70 constellation positions measured to 1.5
    accuracy
  • Chi-square fit to find the best date
  • ? 125 BC (55 years)
  • ? REJECTS Ptolemy, Aratus, Eudoxus, and
    the Assyrian ? MATCHES Hipparchus

8
DATE OF FARNESE ATLAS CONSTELLATION DATA
  • Accuracy of original data is
  • Ancient star catalogs have accuracy
  • Ancient verbal descriptions have accuracy 4-8
  • ? Original data must be from a star catalog
  • ? Only Hipparchus and Ptolemy
  • have old star catalogs
  • (and Ptolemy is too late)

9
DETAILED COMPARISON BETWEEN ATLAS AND ANCIENT
SOURCES
  • Phaenomena of Aratus Eudoxus
  • 12 significant differences
  • e.g., solstice off by 35!, Centaur not under
    Scorpion, Eridanus extends almost to Dog
  • Commentaries of Hipparchus
  • 0 differences
  • Catasterismi of Pseudo-Eratosthenes
    Eratosthenes
  • 9 significant differences
  • e.g., Southern Crown is present, Hercules is
    kneeling, Pegasus has wings
  • Almagest of Ptolemy
  • 11 significant differences
  • e.g., Equuleus and Bernices Hair missing,
    Eridanus extends almost to Dog, Archer has no
    cloak

10
CONNECTING THE FARNESE ATLAS TO HIPPARCHUS
CATALOG
  • 3.5 ACCURACY REQUIRES A STAR CATALOG
  • ?Only Hipparchus and Ptolemy have ancient star
    catalog
  • FARNESE ATLAS POSITIONS FROM 125 55 BC
  • ?Eliminates Ptolemy, Aratus, Eudoxus, the
    Assyrian, and any contemporary
  • ?Only Hipparchus is consistent with date
  • CONSTELLATION ICONS MATCH HIPPARCHUS
  • ?Eliminates Ptolemy, Aratus, Eudoxus, and
    Eratosthenes
  • ?Only Hipparchus matches the Farnese Atlas
  • ? FARNESE ATLAS BASED ON THE LOST STAR CATALOG OF
    HIPPARCHUS

11
APPLICATIONS
  • WHAT COORDINATE SYSTEM DID HIPPARCHUS USE?
  • None? Equatorial? Ecliptic? Mixed?
  • EQUATOR, COLURES, TROPICS ? EQUATORIAL
    COORDINATES
  • HOW MUCH OF HIPPARCHUS CATALOG IS IN THE
    ALMAGEST?
  • None? Small fraction? Large fraction? All?
  • In past, we have only had partial positions for
    some stars (from the Commentary) are known, and
    these have an unknown relation to the star
    catalog
  • NOW, WE HAVE HIPPARCHUS FULL CATALOG ?
  • FUTURE WORKERS WILL TEST FARNESE ATLAS vs.
    ALMAGEST

12
CONCLUSIONS
  • THE LOST STAR CATALOG OF HIPPARCHUS IS DEPICTED
    ON THE FARNESE ATLAS
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