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Article de-stubbed[edit]

Basically this was just a vague discussion of the book's context and later transmission. Now you can find out what is actually in the book, and where to read more. Also, I took out that silly comment that it is a work of astronomy/ASTROLOGY (caps indicate deletion). Ptolemy's astrology is in the Tetrabiblos. Maestlin 01:15, 11 March 2006 (UTC)

Update to include most recent analysis[edit]

In 1994 Anatoly T. Fomenko, Vladimir V. Kalashnikov, and G. V. Nosovsky published a paper that limits the date that the almagest was written. Previously it was assumed 'sometime after 150CE. They have proven it mathematically to be much later than that, between 600 and 1300CE. I will edit the document to include this, and also fix up the document in general because has parts all over the place.--Dacium 06:41, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Their work has met with virtually zero acceptance by anyone, academic or not. It requires overturning most of what is currently accepted about history. I am reverting because your additions are POV, calling an extreme minority theory "proven" without saying anything about its implications or reception. Maestlin 19:04, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
I think you are being a bit over sensitive. Yes Fomenko etc. have some far reaching theories. But there dating of the Almagest is 100% mathematical. This article also leaves out several other studies of the star charts in the Almagest which also show mathematically that the accepted date must be CE and not BC. In mathematical circles the dating is accepted 100%. It is not accept in non-mathematical circles because it does not fit the chronology.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 05:12, 27 October 2006.

I think there should be at least a section in this article which lists purely mathematical analytical dating of the alamgest and the dates obtained. I will endevour to get all the published papers with there proposed dates. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 05:12, 27 October 2006.

Please see the article New Chronology (Fomenko) and consider the proposal again. In my opinion this is complete lunacy. Furthermore, the stars in the star catalogue in itself do not prove that the whole work was written later. There could always be later additions. Fomenkos dating of Almagest is only a part of his "theory". Maybe this could be mentioned here (as 'Alternative theories'), but actually I'm not so sure about it either. --Aethralis 07:56, 27 October 2006 (UTC)
It appears Formeko did not take into account an number of very small changing variables in the rotation of the planet/moon etc and that his calculations are not correct and are also not widly accepted. According the only correct dating its only accurate enough to have the date from 6BC upto 12 AD. However there does remain many things 'interesting' that suggest it was written alot later than expected. Mainly is the ordering of the polar star. The tables start at the polar star and back in his time, it wouldn't have been the polar star, infact at least 1 other start was closer. Why did he select this star to start from that just happens to be the polar during medieval times? There are several more annomilies that Formeko brings up, that are unexplained, even if his dating is mathematically incorrect. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 03:34, 13 November 2006.
Ptolemy was well aware that the tail of the Ursa Minor is not in the center of the sky. See Claudius Ptolemaeus, et al., Ptolemy's "Geography" (Princeton University Press, 2000), p. 65. Btw, please sign your comments. See WP:SIGAethralis 08:45, 13 November 2006 (UTC)
About 1.75 years later: Formeko et al. have proved nothing. None consider their chronology as anything else than pseudo-science based on treating inexact data as being exact. They can allege that the Roman Empire ended about in the 1300-1400:ths if they wish, but few will consider it seriously. Said: Rursus () 22:11, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
It's possible that Formeko et al have discovered by analysis that when the Almagest was translated into Arabic under al-Mamum in the 9th century the Abbasid scholars did the sensible thing of updating and correcting the tables as well as incorporating their own advances in trigonometry, and continued to do so. [See Jonathan Lyons: The House of Wisdom, p199.] What happened to these tables when the original Greek was retranslated may well be unknown, but it's unlikely that people would reinstate older and less accurate versions. It was after all a practical manual. Chris55 (talk) 17:46, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

The thirteen books[edit]

"The Almagest consists of thirteen books. " - where would they be physically sited, out of reading interest? Uranometria (talk) 16:24, 9 August 2008 (UTC)

In a single book with 152 pages, as in the printed edition of 1515. -- Matthead  Discuß   00:18, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Books VII and VIII[edit]

There is a segment of the summary that is I suspect either based on very old information or someone wrote it to suit their anti-Ptolemy feelings. Most of the modern scholarly work on Ptolemy doesn't discount his authorship of the star chart, unless there is a new source of Hipparchus information out there that has shown it to be as it is listed. The easiest accessed example I have for Ptolemy having authored his star charts is Rene Taton's entry on Ptolemy in the Dictionary of Scientific Biography. I will look for the specific citation in the future, but I would suggest that if anyone else is interested they could provide a counter view point. Thanks! Kelryn (talk) 17:47, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

  • Yes, the notion that Ptolemy used Hipparchus' star charts is regarded as obsolete and has not been current for 20-30 years... Stevenmitchell (talk) 09:55, 10 March 2011 (UTC)

Religion and Heresy[edit]

Did the priests of the time (Alexandria in the 1st or 2nd centuries), object to this sort of thing....after all Helios was supposed to drive his chariot across the sky every day and not be an orb out in space. Same with Selene.....Ericl (talk) 14:40, 30 January 2012 (UTC)

The Magna Syntaxis contained details of the locations in Ancient Britain[edit]

Wikipedia appears to be the only source which claims that Britain is located at 22nd parallel. Please explain the claim or remove it. --SergV (talk) 11:07, 4 April 2015 (UTC)

One thing at a time. The text in question said
"The Magna Syntaxis contained details of the locations in Ancient Britain; Brigantium suggested to be located along the 22nd parallel, with central England at the 23rd and York at the 24th.[1]".
This claim was from a 1737 book, correctly cited, and the text of that book on page 367 does indeed make the claim. That does not mean the claim is true of Britain (plainly it's wrong), and it does not even mean (given the age of the source) that the claim is true of the Magna Syntaxis, though it might be. It does mean that British authors of the 18th century thought it worth writing, so it might belong in some other article, or in a footnote or "Legacy" section to this article. It cannot, I think, simply go in the main text as a fact about the Magna Syntaxis itself, so I am putting it here for other editors to consider. Chiswick Chap (talk) 08:40, 10 April 2016 (UTC)
I really doubt this book can be considered authoritative source according Wikipedia rules. As for the claim, I do know exactly where it belong. It's a pseudo-scientific theory known as New Chronology (Fomenko). I also strictly against any attempt to add this information without explanation that it is wrong. --SergV (talk) 17:08, 10 April 2016 (UTC)
Please read what I wrote. The claim in the book is reliable evidence that people claimed such things, all those years ago. Chiswick Chap (talk) 18:31, 10 April 2016 (UTC)
People claim many various things. Only tiny percentage of the claims are worth to be mentioned in an encyclopedia. I believe that we should prove the significance of the claim in addition to it's existence (which I do not deny). In any case it should be clearly stated whether this claim is valid or at least accepted by the scientific community. The only scientists which mention this claim (as far as I am aware) is the Fomenko group with their ridiculous theories. I have deleted this sentence because it obviously contradicted the well known facts and nobody reacted during a year. Britain is not (nor was) located at 22th parallel. I doubt that book is reliable source in terms of Wikipedia rules. Even the book said the claim was probably wrong. --SergV (talk) 20:00, 10 April 2016 (UTC)
You don't listen. If the claim were presented as "true" geography, it would clearly be wrong. However, as a statement about what people thought the Magna Syntaxis said, it is certainly correct; and it may also be right about what the book did say. As such it makes sense in a "Legacy" section. Chiswick Chap (talk) 08:07, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

The Almagest indeed speaks of parallels passing through Ancient Britian (Almagest, book II, section 6 -- p. 88 in Toomer's translation) but in Ptolemy's text parallel is not equivalent with geographical latitude. Ptolemy's parallels define a set of latitudes in which the longest day (at the summer solstice) increases in steps of 15 minutes.

In the text Ptolemy correctly states that the 22nd, 23rd and 24th parallels are equivalent with geographical latitudes of 55, 56 and 57 degrees from the equator. AstroLynx (talk) 09:00, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

Many thanks. Then we can say so under Book II. Chiswick Chap (talk) 09:23, 11 April 2016 (UTC)