Rarities of Astronomy Displayed at New Exhibition
On 19 March, the exhibition "Rarities of Astronomy" was opened in the UT Library, displaying the most valuable part of the historical books and documents that arrived in the library from Tartu Observatory in the end of the previous year.
The exhibition presents books written by many renowned scholars of astronomy of the 16th to 19th centuries, such as Kepler, Brahe, Newton, Struve, Knorre, Pfaff and Mädler. The visually most attractive part of the exhibition includes star atlases, made by the astronomers Bayer, Hevelius, Flamsteed, Bode, Reissig and Braun in the 17th to 19th centuries.
"We show as many books as possible to emphasise the size and diversity of the collection," said the curator of the exhibition Kaisa Kauksi. "The manuscripts written by Tartu astronomers form the most interesting part of the displayed works, which originate from different centuries."
The exhibition is structured by topics, making it easier to follow for those who are not in close contact with astronomy on the daily basis.
The collection of rare books, which arrived to the University of Tartu Library from Tartu Observatory in the end of 2018, has a symbolic meaning. The books, which had originally belonged to Tartu (University) Observatory have now returned to their first home – the university. The transfer of the collection to the UT Library is a part of the process of affiliating the Observatory to the UT – since 2018, the Observatory is an institute of the Faculty of Science and Technology of the UT.
The exhibition was compiled by the UT Library curators Katrin Angel, Kaisa Kauksi and Laura Laanisto, and designed by Lilian Mengel. The exhibition was created in co-operation with the UT Tartu Observatory and Old Observatory.
The rarities of astronomy can be viewed in the UT Library exhibition hall until the end of May.