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Indian Astronomical Instruments1

Nature volume 103, pages 166168 (01 May 1919) | Download Citation



INDIAN astronomy, handed down to us in a series of text-books, the Siddhntas, of which the earliest dates from about A.D. 400, is an offspring of Greek astronomy. Via Babylon and the Greek kingdom of Bactria (the Kabul valley arid the Punjab), Greek science was introduced into India in the course of the two or three centuries following the invasion of Alexander the Great. While, during the Middle Ages, many astronomers in western Asia and North Africa, did good work by re-determining astronomical constants and improving planetary tables by new observations, no attempts whatever in this direction were made in India. It is therefore very curious to find that an extremely belated effort to revive the study of astronomy, and at last to try to advance this science by independent work, was made early in the eighteenth century in the north of India.

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