History of Astronomy

History of AstronomyAstronomy was born almost at the same time as humans. Primitive men already marveled at the spectacle offered by the firmament and the phenomena that were presented there.

Faced with the impossibility of finding an explanation, they were associated with magic, searching the sky for the reason and the cause of the phenomena that happened on Earth. This, together with the superstition and the power that the knowledge to read the destinies of the stars gave, dominated the human beliefs for many centuries.




Many years of observation laid the scientific basis of Astronomy with more approximate explanations about the Universe. However, the geocentric beliefs, supported by religious and political groups with clear interests of domination, imposed an erroneous system for many centuries, also preventing the analysis and study of other theories.

The evolution and diffusion of scientific theories have led to the definitive separation between superstition (astrology) and science (Astronomy). This evolution has not been peaceful, many of the first "scientific" astronomers were persecuted and judged.

For just over four centuries, humanity has "entered into the Cosmos" through various types of instruments, first optical, then digital, now digital. In recent times we have manufactured machines that, with or without a human crew, our ships travel through the closest space, even carrying messages for some (for now, hypothetical) extraterrestrial civilization.


In this section, we look for the bases and the keys that have led to humanity up to the current astronomical knowledge.

In the History of Astronomy:

Prehistoric astronomy: magic, religion, science?
Classical astronomy
Astronomy in other cultures
  • Astronomy in ancient China
  • The Mayan Astronomy
  • The Inca Astronomy
  • Aztec Astronomy
Scientific astronomy
  • Astronomy in the Renaissance
  • Modern astronomy
  • Astronomy in the eighteenth century
  • The Astronomy of the 19th century
  • Astronomy in the twentieth century (I)
  • Astronomy in the twentieth century (II)
  • Internet and astronomy
Space travel and flights
  • The parents of Astronautics
  • The race to the Moon
  • The Mercury Project of NASA
  • The Gemini Program of NASA
  • The Apollo program
  • The arrival to the Moon
  • The Russian Soyuz program
  • The space probes
  • The International Space Station. The project
  • Construction of the International Space Station
  • Space ferries
  • Japan in Astronautics
  • The Chinese space program
  • Voyager-1 leaves the Solar System
  • The Sunjammer on the way to the Sun
History of celestial mechanics
  • Celestial mechanics in Greece and Rome
  • How did the stars move in the Middle Ages?
  • The celestial mechanics according to Kepler
  • Newton, calculation and severity
  • The Lagrange Points
  • Accuracy and rigor of Simon Newcomb
  • Einstein and his relativity in Celestial Mechanics
  • The theory of Perturbations
History of astronomical observation
  • Origin of the celestial observation
  • Observing the sky with the naked eye
  • A craft telescope
  • The reflecting telescope
  • History of the radio telescope
  • Photography in astronomical observation
  • Spectroscopy in astronomy
  • Mechatronics in astronomy
  • Astrotourism
History of Mars exploration
  • First Soviet missions on Mars
  • First attempts, the Mariner program
  • We arrived at Mars: the Viking program
  • Mars Global Surveyor, success of NASA
  • Mars Pathfinder on the surface of Mars
  • The Odyssey and Express missions
  • Mars Exploration Rovers
  • Mars from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter
  • The Russian mission of Phobos-Grunt
  • The Curiosity Rover
  • The MAVEN and MOM missions
  • The future of exploration on Mars


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