Fragments of the famous treatise on the night sky by astronomer Hipparchus have been discovered using multispectral imaging of an ancient Greek palimpsest.
Greek astronomer Hipparchus created a star chart more than 2,100 years ago, and for a very long time, it was believed that this was humanity’s first attempt to give stellar bodies numerical coordinates. Furthermore, Claudius Ptolemy, another well-known astronomer who created his own celestial inventory some 400 years later, was the first to write about the treatise, and only then did the world become aware of its existence. A medieval manuscript may contain pieces of Hipparchus’ lost historical writing, according to researchers. In a research on the discovery that was only recently published in the journal History of Astronomy, it was stated that “this new evidence is the most authoritative to date and allows substantial progress in the reconstruction of Hipparchus’ Star Catalogue.” The discovery may reveal fresh information on the development of astronomy as well as Hipparchus’ endeavor to map the night sky using exact measurements and calculations.