Get Plotting the Globe: Stories of Meridians, Parallels, and the PDF

By Avraham Ariel, Nora Ariel Berger

ISBN-10: 0275988953

ISBN-13: 9780275988951

Humans use strategies corresponding to time and date to constitution their lives every day. they typically degree their shuttle by means of marking issues prepared alongside nice circles at the globe. but such a lot do not realize the starting place and historical past of those phrases and the tales of the intrepid adventurers, scientists, and seafarers who formed our photograph of the area this present day. Ariel transports readers to far flung lands and historical cultures that span greater than 3500 years of exploration. Phoenicians, Spaniards, Portuguese, British, French, and so on megastar in an epic that stretches from Lapland to Cape Horn, through Greenwich, Paris, the Andes and the lucky Islands.

This ebook is a set of news and myths approximately geography, navigation, and geodesy— the technology that offers with the Earth's determine and the interrelationship of chosen issues on its surface-that reaches some distance past dry medical texts to pay attention to the folks in the back of the discoveries. the data and figuring out of summary notions similar to the top Meridian, the Equator, and the overseas Date Line is conveyed via emphasis at the human spirit that inspired the pioneer scientists and sailors. it's a story suffering from heroes and villains, battles, tragedies and foreign intrigue. Readers will research of a time whilst not anything was once certain—even the form and measurement of the earth have been the themes of fierce festival, clash, and politics.

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Extra resources for Plotting the Globe: Stories of Meridians, Parallels, and the International Date Line (Explorations in World Maritime History)

Sample text

After a relatively short spell in Lima, he and his friend Maldonado 15 crossed the Andes with a small team of natives and embarked on a four-month raft and boat journey down the Amazon River. La Condamine was not the first explorer to navigate the full length of the Amazon. Several notable Spaniards had done it in the 200 years Measuring a Meridian Mark I: What Is the Shape of the Earth? 6 Title page of La Figure de la Terre, by Pierre Bouguer, Paris, 1749. Source: The Treasures of the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Central Library.

Years later he calculated the effect that Saturn and Jupiter would have on the 1759 appearance of Halley's comet, and he correctly predicted its return to within a month. Camus was an astronomer, and Outhier a priest with considerable experience in triangulation and mapping. Outhier kept a travel journal, which was later published in France and translated into several European languages. There wereother scientists, too, and a contingent of servants who were to look after the needs and well-being of the scientists, ensuring, for instance, that they were not served red wine with their seafood, pour Vamour de Dieu, heaven forbid!

The scientific rivalry reached a crescendo during the seventeenth and eighteenth 20 Plotting the Globe centuries with the debate about the shape of the earth. The rationale behind Newton's theory was that the centrifugal force makes the enormous mass of the earth swell out at the equator and flattens the poles. Newton, backed by Huygens, postulated in 1687 an oblate—orangeshaped—spheroid, where a length of an arc of one degree of latitude increases from the equator toward the poles. The Cassinis—Jean Dominique and his son Jacques—on the other hand, thought differently.

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Plotting the Globe: Stories of Meridians, Parallels, and the International Date Line (Explorations in World Maritime History) by Avraham Ariel, Nora Ariel Berger

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