The Greatest Comets in History

Broom Stars and Celestial Scimitars

  • David A.J. Seargent

Part of the Astronomers' Universe book series (ASTRONOM)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages 1-16
  2. David A.J. Seargent
    Pages 1-30
  3. David A.J. Seargent
    Pages 1-34
  4. David A.J. Seargent
    Pages 1-25
  5. David A.J. Seargent
    Pages 1-34
  6. David A.J. Seargent
    Pages 1-66
  7. David A.J. Seargent
    Pages 1-34
  8. David A.J. Seargent
    Pages 1-15
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 1-17

About this book


Comets have fascinated and awed humankind since ancient times. Of the thousands of comets recorded throughout history, those deemed to have been the most spectacular have been described in the accounts of eyewitnesses and often recorded in official documents.

This book introduces you to the greatest of the greats, starting with the comet in 372 B. C. called "Aristotle’s Comet" and ending with the spectacular appearance of McNaught’s Comet in 2007. There is an introductory chapter explaining what comets are and how they are classified, and correcting a few popular misconceptions. Later in the book you will read about the different returns of Halley’s Comet and the Kreutz sungrazing group, often called the kamikaze comets. There is even a chapter on comets that were visible in broad daylight.

This book is unique. There are a few books on comets that make passing reference to some of the more famous or spectacular objects of the past, and a few catalogs with long lists of comets. But little detailed and descriptive information is contained in either of these sources.

This is a fascinating account, not only for astronomers at every level but also for readers of popular science. In an engaging way it pulls together a vast amount of information and offers rich anecdotal material that will entertain as well as inform you.


Aristotle's comet Halley's comet astronomy astronomy books comets in history stars

Authors and affiliations

  • David A.J. Seargent
    • 1
  1. 1.The EntranceAustralia

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Physics and Astronomy
  • Print ISBN 978-0-387-09512-7
  • Online ISBN 978-0-387-09513-4
  • Series Print ISSN 1614-659X
  • Buy this book on publisher's site