Author: W Brennand
Publisher: Sundeep Prakashan
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8185066248
Astronomy, as defined in modern idiom, is the science of stars or other heavenly bodies. Hindus recorded their observations of stars or other heavenly bodies, made more than three thousand years before the Christian era, in terms of religious idioms. Each heavenly body, therefore, represented a divinity. Hindu astronomy, as a consequent upon that, had its roots in the doctrine that it was God who had assigned duties to each of the heavenly bodies.
The book elaborately discusses the contributions of early Hindu astronomers, viz. Parasara, Garg, Aryabhaita and Varaha Mihira. Attention is also drawn to ancient astronomical works known as Siddhantas, such as, Brahma Siddhanta, Surya Siddhanta, Brihaspati Siddhanta, Garga Siddhanta, Parasara Siddhanta and Vasishta Siddhanta, etc.
PART - I
CHAPTER I : PREHISTORIC ASTRONOMY OF THE ARYAN MIGRATING TRIBES
Countries Inhabited by Aryan Races
Routes of Migration, East, West and South
Alpha Draconis as Polaris-2800 B.C.
Regulns, or Alpha Leonis, Rising with Sun and Summer Solstice-2280 B.C.
Early Religion of Chinese, Resembling that of the Hindus.
Similarity of Astronomical Conceptions Carried by Migrating Tribes to their New Homes.
Figures Representing the Twelve Signs Connected with Mythology.
Similar Imaginary Forms of the Figures Implying Nearly the Same Early Mythology.
Origin of the Zodiac Traced to Prehistoric Nomads.
Natural Deductions from Heliacal Risings of Stars.
Origin of Sun Dial from Observance of Shadow Cast by Tent Poles.
Reasons for Veneration in Which the Solar Signs Taurus and Leo Were Held.
Phases of the Moon-Synodic Period-Figures of Signs Illustrated.
Conclusion that all Migrating Tribes Carried With them Similar Signs of the Solar Zodiac.
The Chinese Indebted to Hindus for Improvements in their Astronomy.
Greeks not Possessed of the System of Lunar Mansions.
Lunar Mansions Called Arabian Supposed to be Derived from the Chaldeens.
Probability of the System of Lunar Mansions Being the Common Possession of Asiatic Nations.
Names of the Arabian Lunar Mansions.
Comparison of Egyptian, Chinese, Arabic, and Hindu Lunar Mansions.
Cycle of Sixty Years Common to Asiatic Nations.
Summary of Characteristics Affording Evidence of a Common Origin in the Astronomy of Asiatic Nations.
CHAPTER II : EARLY HINDU PERIODS
Origin of the Study of Hindu Astronomy to be Found in their Religious Observances.
The Necessity for a Calendar
The Science of Astronomy Confined to Brahmins.
Antiquity and Civilization of the Hindus, as Studied by Europeans in the Last Century.
Exaggerated Chronological Dates of Most Eastern Nations in Some Measure Accounted for.
Evidence of the Great Antiquity of Hindu Astronomy Afforde by Astronomical Tables Published in 1687 and 1772 A.D.
Bailly's Astronomic Indienne.
Playfair's Investigation of Bailly's Work.
General Conclusions Arrived at By Playfair.
The Supposed General Conjunction of Plants, etc., in 3102 B.C.
The Hindu Theory of Epicycles Differs in Some Respects from that of Ptolemy.
The Kali Yuga one of Several Epochs Invented to Facilitate Astronomical Calculations.
Years of the Maha Yuga and Kalpa.
CHAPTER III : THE HINDU ECLIPTIC
Description of the Nacshatras, or Lunar Asterisms.
Divisions into Twelve Solar Signs and Twenty-Eight Lunar Constellations.
Illustrations of the Ecliptic with Northern and Southern Yuga-Taras.
Other Important Stars Mentioned.
Names of the Twenty-Seven Lunar Asterisms, with Figures Representing Them.
Table of Apparent Longitudes of Latitudes of the Twenty-Seven Yuga-Taras.
Observations of Phenomena Occurring Near the Ecliptic.
Eclipse, and Their Return in Succession in Periods of Every Eighteen Years and Ten or Eleven Days.
Eclipses Supposed, By the Ignorant, to Presage Dreadful Events.
Extracts from Hindu Writings Showing That the Causes of Eclipse Were Well Understood.
The Point Marking the Origin of Apparent Longitudes.
The Modern Origin Fixed When the Venual Equinox Was in the First Point of Aswini, or Mesha (circ. 570 AD)
Meaning of the Term Precession.
Methods of Determining the Date 570 AD
Date When the Vernal Equinox Coincided with the First Point of Crittica.
Confirmation of Such Date Found by Bentley in the Hindu Allegory of the Birth of Four Planets (1528-1371 BC)
Extract from the Varaha-Samhita, with Reference to the Date When the Solstitial Colure Passed Through the First Point of Dhanishtha(circ 1110 BC)
CHAPTER IV : THE HINDU MONTHS, etc
Different Methods of Measuring Time.
Astronomy of the Vedas Described in a Treatise Entitled Jyotisha for the Adjustment of the Ancient Hindu Calendar.
Birthj of Durga (a Personification of the Year).
Formation and Names of the Months.
Extracts Regarding the Months from the Institutes of Menu.
Months Called, in the Institutes, Daughters of Daosha (the Ecliptic), and Consorts of Soma (the Moon).
The Lunar Year More Ancient than the Solar, According to Sir, W.Jones.
The Lunar Month Having a Different Beginning in Different Parts of India.
Phase of the Moon.
Lunar Months, According to the Puranas.
The Same, According to Jyotishicas (Mathematical Astronomers).
Names of the Seasons.
CHAPTER V : THE RISHIS
Heliacal Rising of Results, Marking the Position of Summer Solstice, 2280 B.C.
The Rishis-Seven Indian Sages, Authors of Vedic Hymns, etc, Translated to the Colestial Sphere, as Stars, Alpha to Heta Ursoe Majoris.
Meaning of the Word Rishi.
Explanation of the Motion Erroneously Ascribed to these Stars.
The Line of the Rishis, a Fixed great Circle.
The Solstitial Culture, as Distinct from the Line of the Rishis.
The Annual Rate of Precession Determined by Ancient Hindu Astronomers by Means of Retrogression of Colure from Line of Rishis.
An Alternative Theory Adopted by Later Astronomers, i.e. a Hbration of the Equinox on Each Side of a Mean Point.
Probable Origin of the Theory of Liberation.
Line of Rishis Fixed in Position. 1590 BC
CHAPTER VI : THEORY REGARDING THE CAUSE OF THE PLANETAPY MOTIONS
The Sun and Planets Supposed to be Carried diurnally Westward with the Stars by Pravaha (a Mighty Wind).
The Irregular Motions Caused by Deities Situated at the Apsides and Nodes, Attracting or Deflecting them.
CHAPTER VII : ARITHMETIC, ALGEBRA AND GEOMETRY OF THE HINDUS
Opinions of Dr.Peacock Regarding Antiquity of Hindu Nation.
Dr Hutton's Views on Origin and History of Algebra.
The Earliest Arabian Treatise on Algebra, by Mahomed Ben Musa.
The Algebra of Diophantus-Probably a Translation from Some Ancient Asiatic Manuscript.
Encouragement of the Aledandrian School of Astronomy, by the Ptolemies.
The Lilavati and Vija-Ganita-Hindu Treatises on Arithmetic and Algebra.
Description of these Works by Dr.Hutton.
The Sun Dial.
Examples of Problems and Methods of Solution-from Algebra of Hindus.
CHAPTER VIII : HINDU ASTRONOMICAL INSTRUMENTS
The Armillary Sphere.
The Nadi Valaya.
The Ghati, or Clepshydra.
The Chakra, or Circle.
CHAPTER IX : EARLY HINDU ASTRONOMERS
Distinction Between Circumstances Derived from a Consideration of the Great Epic Poems of the Hindus, and Even of the Vedas and Institutes of Menu, and Circumstances Connected with Purely Astronomical Deductions.
Two Royal Dynasties-the Children of the Sun and the Children of the Moon.
Rama, the Son the Dasaratha, the Hero Most Distinguished by the Hindus.
Yudhisthira, the Hero of the Mahabharata (The War Between the Pandus and the Kurus).
The Astronomers Parasara and Garga Contemporary with Yudhishthira.
Inferences as to Date Deduced from Statements by These Astronomers.
Difficulties Experienced by Sir W.Jones in Forming a Chronological Table.
The Period of Parasara Reckoned by Colebrooke and Sir W. Jones to be 1181 B.C.
Bentley's Estimate of the Same as 575 B.C.
Yudhisthira's Seat of Government at Hastinapura.
Bentley's Estimate Somewhat Confirmed by a Statement of Varaha Mihira.
Bentley's Theory to Account for the Discrepancies Relating to the Rishis.
Parasara and Garga Cited by Him.
The Cycle of 1,000 years of Purasurama.
Bama-Uncertainly Regarding the Period When He Lived; Placed by Hindu Writers Between Brazen and Silver Ages, and Deduced by Sir. W.Jones as 1399 B.C.
Rama`s Period Reckoned by Bentley from His Horoscope, Given in the Ramayana, as Born on 6th April, 691 BC
Portents on His Attaining Manhood, 940 BC
Position of Solstitial Colure 945 BC, Comported with its Position 1192 BC, from Which Rate of Retrogression Was Determined.
Other Observations, then Made, Giving in Commencement of Tropical and Sidereal Years, etc.
Bentley's Hypothesis Regarding Changes in Commencement of Tropical Year.
His Chronological Table, Showing These Changes from 1192 BC to 538 AD (The Latter Being His Estimate of the Date When the Origin of Apparent Longitudes was Fixed).
CHAPTER X : RISE OF THE BUDDHIST HERESY, AND ITS EFFECTS ON HINDU ASTRONOMY
Sakya Muni (Buddha) and Spread of the Buddhist Faith (6th Century BC)
Invasion of India by Alexander the Great (350 BC)
Embassy to the Court of Sandra-Cottus (Or Chandra Gupta) at Palibothra.
Buddhism Becomes the Established State Religion Under Asoka, Grandson of Chandra Gupta (245 BC)
Notes Regarding Sakya Muni.
Dasaratha, Grandson of Asoka, the Reigning Buddhist Prince, at Bentley's 5th Astronomical Period (204 BC)
Notes by Ferguson on Buddhist Architecture, and by Max Mullar on Indian Literature in the Third Century BC
Discussions Between Brahmins and Buddhists.
Indian Manuscripts then and Still in Existence.
Improvements in Astronomy During Bentley's Fifth Period.
Dearth of Information Regarding Astronomy for Several Centuries Before Asoka.
Supposed Destruction of Manuscripts by the Maharattas.
Search Made for Ancient Writings About This Period (20 BC)
Only One Observation Worth Mentioning (Made 215 BC)
Materials for Compiling Astronomical Tables, etc., Afterwards Used, Necessarily Obtained From Earlier Works.
Many Works Known by Name, Now Lost.
Authors Mentioned by Bhascara.
Devis on the Lost Works of Padmanabha.
Causes Leading to the Success of the Revolution Which Made Buddhism the State Religion.
Toleration of the Buddhist and a Freer Intercourse Between Astronomers Holding Diverse Doctrines.
Reconstruction of Hindu Astronomy, and the Use Made in it of Algebra.
Ary-a-Bhatta, the Earliest Known Uninspired Writer on Astronomy (Probable Date, the Beginning of the Christian Era).
His Theories and Method of Solving Astronomical Problems.
Works of Aryabhatta-How Known.
Allegory Concerning the Death of Durga.
CHAPTER XI : PERIOD FROM THE RESTORATION OF THE POWER OF THE BRAHMINS TO BRAHMEGUPTA
Extracts from the History of Malwa.
The Error in Hindu Chronology Relating to the Dates of Dunjee and Rajaj Bhoja Accounted for.
Encouragement of Learning at the Courts of Vickramadityaan and Rajah Bhoja.
The Two Eras-The Samvat of Vicramaditya and the Saca of Salivahana.
The Era of Yudhishthira Superseded.
Political and Religious Disturbances Resulting in the Expulsion of the Buddhists.
Inconveniences from the Use of a Movable Origin for Determining Apparent Longitudes.
Theory of a Libration of the Equinox.
Statement of Varaha Mihira (480 A.D.) Regarding the Retrogression of the Solstice.
Account of His Works on Astrology, and Works on Astronomy Edited by Him.
Varaha Mihira Probably Contemporary with Rajah Bhoja, and, with Brahmegupta, Possibly a Guest at His Court.
Brahmegupta (535 A.D.) and His Views.
Extracts from the Aryan Akberi Relating to the Times When the Planet Jupitor Enters to Sign Leo.
Inferences Drawn from These Extracts.
The Cycle of Sixty Years of Vrihaspati (Jupiter) and Observations of Davis Thereon.
The Buddhists Sage, Vrihaspati.
CHAPTER XII : ASTRONOMIOCAL WORKS OF THE HINDUS
Reconstruction of Hindu Astronomy on Restoration of the Power of the Brahmins.
Difficulties of Scientific Studies from Manuscripts Alone.
Names of Nineteen Treatises Entitled Siddhantas-Some Still Extant.
Probable Dates When Several of them Were Revised and Corrected.
The Five Siddhantas Edited by Varahara-Mihira.
Description of Contents of the Brahma Siddhanta.
Examples of Problems and Methods of Solutions of this Work.
Table of Mean Motions of the Sun, Moon and Planets, or Their Revolutions in a Kalpa According to Brhamegupta.
Smaller Table for Illustration and Practice of the Rules, the Revolutions and Days Being Sated in Lowest Terms and for Facility's Sake.
Examples Illustrating the Use of the Table.
Remarks Upon the Ancient Saura, or Surya Siddhanta.
The Arrangement of Infinite Time as Stated in the Institutes of Menu.
A Similar Arrangement as Given in the Siddhantas.
Received Modern Notions Concerning the Great Numbers of Years Comprised in the Maha Yuga and Kalpa.
Explanation of the Maha Yuga.
Corrections Applied to Mean Motions at Different Times, According to Several Siddhantas.
Construction of the Kalpa-Designed to Include a Correct Estimate of Precession.
Opinion of Sir W.Jones Regarding the Purpose of the Comple from of the Kalpa.
Explanation Showing that its Inventors Had an Especial Design in its Construction.
PART - II
DESCRIPTION OF THE SURYA SIDDHANTA, WITH REMARKS AND
EXPLANATIONS OF THE RULES
Chapter - 1 : Treating of Rules for Finding the Mean Places of the Planets.
Chapter - 2 : The Rules for Finding the True Places of the Plants.
Chapter - 3 : Rules for Resolving Questions on Time, The Position of Places and Directions.
Chapter - 4 : Eclipse of the Moon.
Chapter - 5 : Eclipses of the Sun.
Chapter - 6 : Projection of Solar and Lunar Eclipses.
Chapter - 7 : Conjunctions of planets.
Chapter - 8 : Conjections of Planets with Stars.
Chapter - 9 : Heliacal Rising and Setting of Stars and Planets.
Chapter - 10 : Phase of the Moon, and Position of the Moon`s Cusps.
Chapter - 11 : Rules for Finding the Time at Which the Declinations of the Sun and Moon Become Equal.
Chapter - 12 : Cosmographical Theories.
Chapter - 13 : The Armillary Sphere and Other Astronomical Instruments.
Chapter - 14 : Treats of Kinds of Time.