Accuracy of Solar Eclipse Observations Made by Jesuit Astronomers in China

  • Article
  • 10 pages
  • Level: university

A 1995 Journal for the History of Astronomy article by F. R. Stephenson and L. J. Fatoohi:

Abstract: During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, Jesuit astronomers at the Chinese court in Beijing observed many eclipses of the Sun and Moon. For most of these events the times of beginning, middle and end were measured and the magnitudes estimated. Summaries of virtually all of the observation made between A.D. 1644 and 1785 are still preserved. In this paper, that various solar eclipse measurements that the Jesuits made during the period are compared with computation based on modern solar and lunar ephemerides.

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