London, South Kensington
23 April 2008
DOPPLER, Johann Christian (1803-1853). Ueber das farbige Licht der Doppelsterne und einiger anderer Gestirne des Himmels, offprint from: Abhandlungen der k. böhm. Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften, Series 5.2, 1842. Prague: Borrosch & André, 1842. 4° (254 x 208mm). Lithographed plate (title a little spotted). Black morocco-backed boards by Lobstein-Laurenchet. Provenance: PRESENTATION COPY INSCRIBED AT HEAD OF TITLE 'POUR MR ARAGO', and 2 notes on the title, presumably in the latter's hand, Dominique Francois Jean Arago (1786-1853), physicist and astronomer.
FIRST SEPARATE EDITION, RARE of 'the first statement of the Doppler principle, which relates the observed frequency of a wave to the motion of the source or the observer relative to the medium in which the wave is propagated. Doppler mentioned the application of this principle to both acoustics and optics, particularly to the colored appearance of double stars and the fluctuations of variable stars and novae' (Norman). François Jean Dominique Arago (1786-1853), mathematician, physicist, astronomer and politician, achieved fame chiefly as an experimenter and discoverer, mainly in the fields of magnetism and still more in optics. As a young man he had been interested in the pressure of steam at different temperatures, acoustics and the velocity of sound. His work on magnetism influenced Faraday. Gedeon pp.212-13; Norman 651.
With B. Ballot's "Akustische Versuche auf der niederländischen Eisenbahn, nebst gelegentlichen Bemerkungen zur Theorie des Hrn. Prof. Doppler" (in: Annalen der Physik und Chemie, vol. VI, Leipzig, 1845). His proof of Doppler's theory - using trumpets on a train. Gedeon p. 213. (2)
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