The Star Catalogue Commonly Appended to the Alfonsine Tables

  title={The Star Catalogue Commonly Appended to the Alfonsine Tables},
  author={Paul Kunitzsch},
  journal={Journal for the History of Astronomy},
  pages={89 - 98}
  • P. Kunitzsch
  • Published 1 May 1986
  • Physics
  • Journal for the History of Astronomy
In earlier works on the history of star names! the Alfonsine Tables, or "the authors of the Alfonsine Tables", or summarily "the Alfonsinians", were often made responsible for the introduction of new Arabic material into the corpus of star names traditionally transmitted, and continuously used until today, in mediaeval Western, and modern, astronomy. Owing to the knowledge we now have of a considerably larger number of original sources, both Oriental and Occidental, and our better understanding… 
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John of London and His Unknown Arabic Source
In my 1959 book on Arabic star names, 1 I made out a group of names which could be traced back only to an "unbekannte Quelle" ("unknown source"), but not beyond.? Some years later, it had become
619, fol. 192v (no. 14) -here for the Ist star of Argo (= II Pup); equally so in Clm 10662, fol. 99v (computed for the year 1430). In at2, eventually, given to the 6th star of Argo (k Pup)
  • Originally given to p Pup)(2nd star of Argo in Almagest), but transferred to the 17th star(~Pup) in Vienna
Kunitzsch, "John of London and his unknown Arabic source", JournalJor the history oj astronomy, xvii
  • 1986
as straach, scheat, etc. The same star is spelled Cenok in a related star table in MS Cambridge
  • Univ. Libr. Add
  • MSS 2323 (14th cent.), fol 80v-8Ir, and 2367 (15th cent.), fol. 194r
The other sources use another Arabic name or, in VI, only the constellation nameadigege, without the deneb element
  • But XIII
Clm 14504, fol. 226r-227r; and Nuremberg, Cent. VI 18, fol. 73r (autograph by Regiomontanusj
    ButJohn of Gmunden's second table(cf ref. 19),no. 12, has the correct Rigi/ Algebar (whereas his first table
    • applies Rigi/ Algeuze, after the Typ VI-tradition). Rigi/ algebar also appears in further star tables of John of Gmunden
    shin" is not used for any star of Pegasus in the Almagest
      but some of the Arabic names used here are derived from another, anonymous, Latin translation from the Arabic dated 1206
      • The anonymous list of 226 stars (mentioned in ref. 10, above) is also related to the Tetrabiblos chapter