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Between Theory and Observations
Sources and Studies in the History of Mathematics and Physical Sciences
In the 18th century, purely scientific interests as well as the practical necessities of navigation motivated the development of new theories and techniques to accurately describe celestial and lunar motion. "Between Theory and Observations" presents a detailed and accurate account, not to be found elsewhere in the literature, of Tobias Mayer's important contributions to the study of lunar motion-including the creation of his famous set of lunar tables, which were the most accurate of their time.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
From the reviews: "Tobias Mayer, whose work on lunar motion is the subject of this book by Steven Wepster ... . Wepster provides evidence to show that his work on lunar tables is also based upon Newton's attempts. ... I think that the only way to gain insight into the intricacies of his lunar tables is to study this unique and interesting book. ... of interest to historians of mathematics and astronomers. ... no other book that researches this topic so thoroughly as this one by Stephen Wepster." (Peter Ruane, The Mathematical Association of America, May, 2010) "The present study investigates the evolution of Tobias Mayer's lunar theory and tables. ... Mayer's technique of adjusting the coefficients of his lunar tables to fit an extensive collection of observational data is examined in detail, and it is clear that his efforts were unprecedented. This volume will be warmly welcomed not only by those who are interested in the historical development of the theory of lunar motion but also by historians of mathematics and astronomy."--- (William R. Shea, Mathematical Reviews, Issue 2010 j)