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3 - Exploratory Encounters with the Work of Arab Astronomers and Meteorologists

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 November 2019

Anne Lawrence-Mathers
Affiliation:
University of Reading
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Summary

Chapter 3 gives an account of the transmission of Islamicate meteorology into Northern and Western Europe. An early phase was the collection and study of the texts known as the Alchandrean Corpus, which provided short introductions to topics within astronomy and mathematics. The chapter then considers twelfth-century translations of more advanced works, and especially of treatises on weather-forecasting. The contributions of Petrus Alfonsi, and the reception of Latin translations of Arabic versions of the works of Ptolemy, are discussed. The chapter argues that it was this period that saw the creation of Latin, Christian forms of astrologically based weather forecasting. Moreover, this was no transitory fashion, and the new, astrometeorology remained dominant until the seventeenth century. Central to this new science was the application of fundamental works by Ptolemy, and this is considered in detail. The final part of the chapter gives an outline of the works of Islamicate astrometeorology that were translated into Latin, and especially of the theories of al-Kindi. The conclusion is that Latin writers and translators searched out works on weather forecasting, and rapidly began to produce their own versions.

Type
Chapter
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Medieval Meteorology
Forecasting the Weather from Aristotle to the Almanac
, pp. 66 - 86
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2019

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