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Early Alfonsine Astronomy in Paris: The Tables of John Vimond (1320)

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Chapter Summary

It has been clear for many years that medieval European astronomy in Latin was dependent on sources from the Iberian Peninsula, primarily in Arabic, but also in Hebrew, Castilian, and Catalan. The Castilian Alfonsine Tables, compiled under the patronage of Alfonso x, were a vehicle for the transmission of this body of knowledge to astronomers north of the Pyrenees, but the details of this transmission remain elusive, in part because only the canons to these tables survive. This chapter builds on studies of a figure that previously had barely been mentioned in the recent literature on medieval astronomy. John Vimond was active in Paris ca. 1320 and his tables have much in common with the Parisian Alfonsine Tables, but differ from them in many significant ways. The exact date of composition of Vimond's tables is not given in the text, but they were probably produced shortly before 1320.

Keywords: Castilian Alfonsine Tables; John Vimond; medieval European astronomy; Paris



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