"This book is one that I can heartily recommend." — Sir Harold Spencer Jones, F. R. S., formerly Astronomer Royal
A model of comprehensive scholarship, The History of the Telescope relates not only the stories of early inventors and astronomers but also the rarely recorded details of the instruments themselves and their makers. This remarkable chronicle covers many fields, including professional and amateur astronomy, optics, glass and lens technology, and the craft of the precision instrument.
Author Henry C. King bases his accounts primarily on first-hand sources — the letters, memoirs, papers, and treatises of the men who worked with telescopes. The great intellects (Roger Bacon, Galileo, Newton) and innovators (Tycho Brahe, Huygens, Hooke, Sir William Herschel) receive their due, along with lesser-known craftsmen and amateurs: the seventeenth-century Italian telescope makers Campani and Divini; the great London instrument artists Graham, Dolland, and Ramsden; and the experimenters Foucault and Brashear, whose contributions to mirror manufacture remain fundamental to all levels of astronomical endeavor. The modern-day successors of these men and their achievements bring this history to its conclusion in the mid-twentieth century, with profiles of the instruments still in use today.
A prime resource on the evolution of the telescope, this volume is magnificently illustrated with nearly 200 portraits, diagrams, and photographs.