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4 thoughts on “Kosmos Entwurf einer physischen Weltbeschreibung

  1. says:

    I have just recently become acuainted with the work of a remarkable man Alexander von Humboldt about whom I was almost completely ignorant; knowing only that the cold ocean current that runs north from Antarctica along the west coast of South America is named for him My initial discovery came from Andrea Wulf's wonderful book The Invention of Nature Alexander von Humboldt's New World previously reviewed I was so impressed with his story I wanted to read the man's words for myselfCarl Sagan is associated with the word cosmos due to his outstanding book and TV series of the name from 1981 which were wildly popular Others have used the word as a book title something I discovered when I did a search here on Goodreads Strangely the book by Humboldt also wildly popular when the first volume came out in 1859 was not found This is a shame but understandable demonstrating how popularity is by nature fleetingBecause of the history of the word in print I went to the library and looked at the introduction Sagan wrote for his Cosmos I wondered if he had read Humboldt's book and had perhaps been inspired by it a very reasonable conjecture but I found no mention of the book or the manWhereas Sagan limited himself to astronomy Humboldt took on everything from soils to volcanoes to the atmosphere to comets and the history of life on earth This book volume one was added to with multiple volumes all the rest out of print because the man was so filled with information he wanted to impart that the flow could not be stopped short of his deathIt's difficult for us today to understand the time in which Humboldt lived a time of great intellectual excitement over the new discoveries of science as the fog of theology was being gradually dispersed The public traveled little and then not far South America and Africa were wrapped in mystery for the English speaking world while even western North America was only recently and partially illuminated by the travels of Lewis and Clark Not only were lands being revealed but the processes of physics on the world were tooWhere does lava come from? How deep are the oceans? Why does the wind blow from a certain direction? How is it that this species of animal or plant in Peru looks so much like another in Poland? What causes the Northern Lights? What do the stars look like south of the euator? How far away are the moon and the stars? Everything is newly seen and answers if not readily available will surely be found and soon The man in the street cannot go and see for himself but he can read avidly for hours on end sharing the fabulous adventures of one who has the driving curiosity financial means and technical education geology in particular to give very plausible opinions informed by detailed experimentation As technology awes you and me this dramatic rising of the curtain on rational thought about the universe was the excitement of the 19th centuryHumboldt is an admirable man He readily gives credit to the work of others that provide a basis for or parallel his own work He has no time for idle speculation at which he rightly says the ancient Greeks were masters Instead he wants proof Lugging instruments along he takes on mountains deserts jungle Is the altitude getting too high to breathe? Push on Are clouds of mosuitoes biting for days on end? Push on Stop here there and everywhere to examine the leaf of a plant the angle of a rock formation or to measure air pressure with a barometer Charles Darwin was awed by Humboldt's work and all but memorized his writings before his famous voyage aboard the BeagleThere is a problem however I don't think the modern reader would enjoy this book I came to it with a lifelong love of geography and astronomy I found it fascinating because I could compare what Humboldt thought with what we now know from further research on the many subjects covered He was on the right track far often than not One glaring oversight is his failure to consider the volume of ice as a factor in the level of the oceans though admittedly the polar regions were still unknown His prose is verbose in keeping with the time it was written and he goes on at great length never letting go a subject until he has exhausted all he can say about it 2017 readers are not patient particularly when they can say but we KNOW all of this stuff now Humboldt uses many unfamiliar words The typeface in this book is very tiny and too freuently flawed letters clipped or broken and some pages are almost entirely even tinier footnotesThat said let me close with an extended uote from Humboldt that knocked me over for the enlightened mind that it shows the mind of a man that let reason transcend the time in which he lived a time when racism was rampant and it was generally accepted that white Europeans like Humboldt were of the superior race He writes While we maintain the unity of the human species we at the same time repel the depressing assumption of superior and inferior races of men There are nations susceptible of cultivation highly civilized ennobled by mental cultivation than others but none in themselves noble than others All are in like degree designed for freedom; a freedom which in the ruder conditions of society belongs only to the individual but which in social states enjoying political institutions appertains as a right to the whole body of the community then uoting his brother Wilhelm Humboldt If we would indicate an idea which throughout the whole course of history has ever widely extended its empire or which than any other testifies to the much contested and still decidedly misunderstood perfectibility of the whole human race it is that of establishing our common humanity of striving to remove the barriers which prejudice and limited views of every kind have erected among men and to treat all mankind without reference to religion nation or color as one fraternity one great community fitted for the attainment of one object the unrestrained development of the physical powers This is the ultimate and highest aim of society identical with the direction implanted by nature in the mind of man toward the indefinite extension of his existenceHe regards the earth in all its limits and the heavens as far as the eye can scan their bright and starry depths as inwardly his own given to him as the objects of his contemplation and as a field for the development of his energies Even the child longs to pass the hills or the seas which enclose his narrow home; yet when his eager steps have borne him beyond those limits he pines like the plant for his native soil; and it is by this touching and beautiful attribute of man this longing for that which is unknown and this remembrance of that which is lost that he is spared from an exclusive attachment to the present Thus deeply rooted in the innermost nature of man and even enjoined upon him by his highest tendencies the recognition of the bond of humanity becomes one of the noblest leading principles in the history of mankind


  2. says:

    I've always been an avid reader of science popularizations and I've read many especially in the past two years; so eventually I had to go back to one of the first the most comprehensive and certainly the most successful popularizations of all time Alexander von Humboldt's Kosmos This book is a summary of early nineteenth century science After an introductory section giving von Humboldt's conception of science and explaining what he intends to cover and what he wants to accomplish not an encyclopedic collection of facts or theories but a view of the interconnections of phenomena the first volume the general Weltgemalde or world picture is divided into an astronomic part and a telluric part The first part begins with nebulas and the galaxy and narrows down to the stars the solar system the planets comets and meteors and then describes the Earth in its general form as a planet The second part deals with the structure of the Earth earthuakes volcanoes mountains rocks the oceans the atmosphere and weather organic life and physical anthropology The most extensive sections are the geological ones; the biological and especially the human sections are short I believe the second third and fourth volumes are detailed accounts of astronomy and geology; he never got to the detailed views of biology and anthropology which however are covered in many of his specialized books Kosmos was one of the major best sellers of its time despite its length and difficulty; it represents what the educated non scientist could be expected to know about the sciences for most of the nineteenth century and for that reason alone is worth reading for anyone interested in the thought of the periodAlthough science was and is always changing and any science popularization is somewhat outdated by the time it is even published the later volumes make an effort to keep up with the latest developments and a posthumously published fifth volume is made up entirely of such corrections and additions along with the index to all five von Humboldt seems curiously modern compared to many other figures of the time The general view of astronomy here didn't change much until the time of Hubble in the 1920's; the geology was essentially except for the Ice Ages which had only recently been suggested about this time and might be in the later volumes the same paradigm as what I learned in grade school the new view of plate tectonics didn't come until I was in high school The biology on the other hand was superceded the year Humboldt died with the publication of The Origin of Species which relies on von Humboldt's discoveries in plant and animal geography for its most convincing arguments The anthropological section though only a few pages at the end and censored out of the early American translations was especially modern as he emphasizes his belief in the unity of the human species and makes the case against racial theories with ideas that were only recovered in the 1940s and 1950s after a century of racist anthropology the facts that traits such as dark skin wooly hair and so forth do not vary together but separately in different groups that various traits are a result of adaptation to the climate and other factors that language groups and ethnic groups are not the same and so forth He ends up with a sharp attack on slavery and unambiguously states that all races have the same rights to freedom If von Humboldt's work is worth reading the same however cannot be said for the Kindle version While unlike many free or low cost e books it is adeuately proofread the formatting is terrible; the original endnotes are inserted in the text without any indication of where they begin or end so that a sentence will break off in the middle and resume a page or two later without warning This makes the book very confusing to read there are long notes on every page and is especially damaging in German where verbs and separable prefixes come at the end of sentences My view is that printed books should never have endnotes and e books should always have endnotes with links from the text Given that von Humboldt was a pioneer in scientific illustrations inventing isotherms isoclines etc as well as geological sections it is surprising that the book had no illustrations although just as well in the Kindle version since e books don't generally do well with illustrations the one chart included here was cut off at the end Apparently there was an atlas published by someone else at the same time which contained illustrative material for the bookI will add my reviews for the subseuent volumes as I finish them Volume 2The second volume of Humboldt's Kosmos this was not what I expected it to be a detailed version of the general sketch in the first volume; it was actually a history of the development of overall views of the physical world from the time of the early Greeks to the beginning of the eighteenth century The first few chapters deal with the view of the world as expressed in art and literature and emphasize the Indian over the European works; the rest deals with the major events which changed humanity's view of the Cosmos the discovery of the Black Sea the discovery of the Indian Ocean the expeditions of Alexander the Roman Empire the development of Arab science the discovery of America and the scientific revolution from Copernicus to Newton This is one of the most interesting histories of science I have read despite its age; especially impressive in its relative freedom from Eurocentrism he considers the modern scientific worldview to be essentially a product of the Arab world As with the first volume this was very hard to read due to the poor formatting of the Kindle edition; and despite my enjoyment of the book I think I will skip the third and fourth volumes until either fixes the Kindle version or I manage to find a print edition


  3. says:

    A must read to partially understand the genius of AvH His drive to discover and describe the world in this beautiful nature paired with the evil european colonials is a real historical document Makes you want to know even about man


  4. says:

    Hervorragender Reprint dieses Klassikers von Alexander von Humboldts aus dem 19 Jahrhunderts


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Kosmos Entwurf einer physischen Weltbeschreibung

characters Ì PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ¸ Alexander von Humboldt

Erk stark gemacht der für diesen Plan namhafte Mitstreiter aus Politik und Wissenschaft gewinnen konnte Eine Lichtgestalt wie der jüngere der beiden Humboldt Brüder so hofft man könnte auch der zunehmend verbissenen Debatte um den bedauernswerten Zustand der deutschen Bildung zwischen Pisa und Bologna eine positive Orientierung geben Ein wenig von der Begeisterung seines damaligen Berliner Publikums können heutige Leser nun nachvollziehen wenn sie in jenem Werk auf Entdeckungsreise gehen das aus den Vorlesungen Humboldts entstand der Kosmos laut Untertitel der Entwurf einer physischen Weltbeschreibung Was damit gemeint war hat Humboldt folgendermaßen beschrieben Ich habe den tollen Einfall die ganze materielle Welt in einem Werke darzustellen das zugleich in lebe. I've always been an avid reader of science popularizations and I've read many especially in the past two years; so eventually I had to go back to one of the first the most comprehensive and certainly the most successful popularizations of all time Alexander von Humboldt's Kosmos This book is a summary of early nineteenth century science After an introductory section giving von Humboldt's conception of science and explaining what he intends to cover and what he wants to accomplish not an encyclopedic collection of facts or theories but a view of the interconnections of phenomena the first volume the general Weltgemalde or world picture is divided into an astronomic part and a telluric part The first part begins with nebulas and the galaxy and narrows down to the stars the solar system the planets comets and meteors and then describes the Earth in its general form as a planet The second part deals with the structure of the Earth earthuakes volcanoes mountains rocks the oceans the atmosphere and weather organic life and physical anthropology The most extensive sections are the geological ones; the biological and especially the human sections are short I believe the second third and fourth volumes are detailed accounts of astronomy and geology; he never got to the detailed views of biology and anthropology which however are covered in many of his specialized books Kosmos was one of the major best sellers of its time despite its length and difficulty; it represents what the educated non scientist could be expected to know about the sciences for most of the nineteenth century and for that reason alone is worth reading for anyone interested in the thought of the periodAlthough science was and is always changing and any science popularization is somewhat outdated by the time it is even published the later volumes make an effort to keep up with the latest developments and a posthumously published fifth volume is made up entirely of such corrections and additions along with the index to all five von Humboldt seems curiously modern compared to many other figures of the time The general view of astronomy here didn't change much until the time of Hubble in the 1920's; the geology was essentially except for the Ice Ages which had only recently been suggested about this time and might be in the later volumes the same paradigm as what I learned in grade school the new view of plate tectonics didn't come until I was in high school The biology on the other hand was superceded the year Humboldt died with the publication of The Origin of Species which relies on von Humboldt's discoveries in plant and animal geography for its most convincing arguments The anthropological section though only a few pages at the end and censored out of the early American translations was especially modern as he emphasizes his belief in the unity of the human species and makes the case against racial theories with ideas that were only recovered in the 1940s and 1950s after a century of racist anthropology the facts that traits such as dark skin wooly hair and so forth do not vary together but separately in different groups that various traits are a result of adaptation to the climate and other factors that language groups and ethnic groups are not the same and so forth He ends up with a sharp attack on slavery and unambiguously states that all races have the same rights to freedom If von Humboldt's work is worth reading the same however cannot be said for the Kindle version While unlike many free or low cost e books it is adeuately proofread the formatting is terrible; the original endnotes are inserted in the text without any indication of where they begin or end so that a sentence will break off in the middle and resume a page or two later without warning This makes the book very confusing to read there are long notes on every page and is especially damaging in German where verbs and separable prefixes come at the end of sentences My view is that printed books should never have endnotes and e books should always have endnotes with links from the text Given that von Humboldt was a pioneer in scientific illustrations inventing isotherms isoclines etc as well as geological sections it is surprising that the book had no illustrations although just as well in the Kindle version since e books don't generally do well with illustrations the one chart included here was cut off at the end Apparently there was an atlas published by someone else at the same time which contained illustrative material for the bookI will add my reviews for the subseuent volumes as I finish them Volume 2The second volume of Humboldt's Kosmos this was not what I expected it to be a detailed version of the general sketch in the first volume; it was actually a history of the development of overall views of the physical world from the time of the early Greeks to the beginning of the eighteenth century The first few chapters deal with the view of the world as expressed in art and literature and emphasize the Indian over the European works; the rest deals with the major events which changed humanity's view of the Cosmos the discovery of the Black Sea the discovery of the Indian Ocean the expeditions of Alexander the Roman Empire the development of Arab science the discovery of America and the scientific revolution from Copernicus to Newton This is one of the most interesting histories of science I have read despite its age; especially impressive in its relative freedom from Eurocentrism he considers the modern scientific worldview to be essentially a product of the Arab world As with the first volume this was very hard to read due to the poor formatting of the Kindle edition; and despite my enjoyment of the book I think I will skip the third and fourth volumes until either fixes the Kindle version or I manage to find a print edition

Read Kosmos Entwurf einer physischen Weltbeschreibung

Ndiger Sprache anregt und das Gemüth ergötzt Auf nahezu tausend Seiten entfaltet der Kosmos ein überwältigendes Panorama des verfügbaren Wissens ein wahrlich erschöpfendes Magazin wissenschaftlicher Weltbeschreibung das bei aller Empirie jedoch geradezu verführerisch unterhaltsam eben 'ergötzend' bleibt Heute wäre Humboldt sicher ein Star der Wissenschaftsbelletristik wie Hawkins Gould oder Pinker und sein Werk lebt vor allem vom jugendlichen Enthusiasmus des romantischen Eroberers fremder Welten der den deutschen Alexander mit seinem antiken Vorbild verbindet Humboldts Kosmos lohnt auch heute eine Entdeckung und verdient viele neugierige wagemutige und wissensdurstige Leser die bereit sind sich von der Begeisterung des Autoren anstecken zu lassen Peter Schnec. A must read to partially understand the genius of AvH His drive to discover and describe the world in this beautiful nature paired with the evil european colonials is a real historical document Makes you want to know even about man

characters Ì PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ¸ Alexander von Humboldt

Er war ein weit gereister Universalgelehrter in der ganzen Welt bekannt und bewundert Ein Frauenschwarm bei dem auch Männer glänzende Augen bekamen Zu seinen Verehrern zählten Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ebenso wie Edgar Allan Poe und zu seinen Vorlesungen pilgerte begeistert ganz Berlin vom einfachen Arbeiter bis zum preußischen König Als Forscher und als Denker war Alexander von Humboldt eine Klasse für sich um so verwunderlicher dass diese so faszinierende Gestalt der deutschen Geistesgeschichte vielen seiner Landsleute bis heute nahezu gänzlich unbekannt geblieben ist Dies dürfte sich jedoch schnell ändern denn mit Hans Magnus Enzensberger hat sich ein bekannter zeitgenössischer Bewunderer Alexander von Humboldts für eine Wiederentdeckung von Person und W. I have just recently become acuainted with the work of a remarkable man Alexander von Humboldt about whom I was almost completely ignorant; knowing only that the cold ocean current that runs north from Antarctica along the west coast of South America is named for him My initial discovery came from Andrea Wulf's wonderful book The Invention of Nature Alexander von Humboldt's New World previously reviewed I was so impressed with his story I wanted to read the man's words for myselfCarl Sagan is associated with the word cosmos due to his outstanding book and TV series of the name from 1981 which were wildly popular Others have used the word as a book title something I discovered when I did a search here on Goodreads Strangely the book by Humboldt also wildly popular when the first volume came out in 1859 was not found This is a shame but understandable demonstrating how popularity is by nature fleetingBecause of the history of the word in print I went to the library and looked at the introduction Sagan wrote for his Cosmos I wondered if he had read Humboldt's book and had perhaps been inspired by it a very reasonable conjecture but I found no mention of the book or the manWhereas Sagan limited himself to astronomy Humboldt took on everything from soils to volcanoes to the atmosphere to comets and the history of life on earth This book volume one was added to with multiple volumes all the rest out of print because the man was so filled with information he wanted to impart that the flow could not be stopped short of his deathIt's difficult for us today to understand the time in which Humboldt lived a time of great intellectual excitement over the new discoveries of science as the fog of theology was being gradually dispersed The public traveled little and then not far South America and Africa were wrapped in mystery for the English speaking world while even western North America was only recently and partially illuminated by the travels of Lewis and Clark Not only were lands being revealed but the processes of physics on the world were tooWhere does lava come from How deep are the oceans Why does the wind blow from a certain direction How is it that this species of animal or plant in Peru looks so much like another in Poland What causes the Northern Lights What do the stars look like south of the euator How far away are the moon and the stars Everything is newly seen and answers if not readily available will surely be found and soon The man in the street cannot go and see for himself but he can read avidly for hours on end sharing the fabulous adventures of one who has the driving curiosity financial means and technical education geology in particular to give very plausible opinions informed by detailed experimentation As technology awes you and me this dramatic rising of the curtain on rational thought about the universe was the excitement of the 19th centuryHumboldt is an admirable man He readily gives credit to the work of others that provide a basis for or parallel his own work He has no time for idle speculation at which he rightly says the ancient Greeks were masters Instead he wants proof Lugging instruments along he takes on mountains deserts jungle Is the altitude getting too high to breathe Push on Are clouds of mosuitoes biting for days on end Push on Stop here there and everywhere to examine the leaf of a plant the angle of a rock formation or to measure air pressure with a barometer Charles Darwin was awed by Humboldt's work and all but memorized his writings before his famous voyage aboard the BeagleThere is a problem however I don't think the modern reader would enjoy this book I came to it with a lifelong love of geography and astronomy I found it fascinating because I could compare what Humboldt thought with what we now know from further research on the many subjects covered He was on the right track far often than not One glaring oversight is his failure to consider the volume of ice as a factor in the level of the oceans though admittedly the polar regions were still unknown His prose is verbose in keeping with the time it was written and he goes on at great length never letting go a subject until he has exhausted all he can say about it 2017 readers are not patient particularly when they can say but we KNOW all of this stuff now Humboldt uses many unfamiliar words The typeface in this book is very tiny and too freuently flawed letters clipped or broken and some pages are almost entirely even tinier footnotesThat said let me close with an extended uote from Humboldt that knocked me over for the enlightened mind that it shows the mind of a man that let reason transcend the time in which he lived a time when racism was rampant and it was generally accepted that white Europeans like Humboldt were of the superior race He writes While we maintain the unity of the human species we at the same time repel the depressing assumption of superior and inferior races of men There are nations susceptible of cultivation highly civilized ennobled by mental cultivation than others but none in themselves noble than others All are in like degree designed for freedom; a freedom which in the ruder conditions of society belongs only to the individual but which in social states enjoying political institutions appertains as a right to the whole body of the community then uoting his brother Wilhelm Humboldt If we would indicate an idea which throughout the whole course of history has ever widely extended its empire or which than any other testifies to the much contested and still decidedly misunderstood perfectibility of the whole human race it is that of establishing our common humanity of striving to remove the barriers which prejudice and limited views of every kind have erected among men and to treat all mankind without reference to religion nation or color as one fraternity one great community fitted for the attainment of one object the unrestrained development of the physical powers This is the ultimate and highest aim of society identical with the direction implanted by nature in the mind of man toward the indefinite extension of his existenceHe regards the earth in all its limits and the heavens as far as the eye can scan their bright and starry depths as inwardly his own given to him as the objects of his contemplation and as a field for the development of his energies Even the child longs to pass the hills or the seas which enclose his narrow home; yet when his eager steps have borne him beyond those limits he pines like the plant for his native soil; and it is by this touching and beautiful attribute of man this longing for that which is unknown and this remembrance of that which is lost that he is spared from an exclusive attachment to the present Thus deeply rooted in the innermost nature of man and even enjoined upon him by his highest tendencies the recognition of the bond of humanity becomes one of the noblest leading principles in the history of mankind

  • Hardcover
  • 941
  • Kosmos Entwurf einer physischen Weltbeschreibung
  • Alexander von Humboldt
  • German
  • 05 July 2018
  • 9783821847443

About the Author: Alexander von Humboldt

Wilhelm von Humboldt 1767 1835 Humboldt's uantitative work on botanical geography was foundational to the field of biogeographyBetween 1799 and 1804 Humboldt traveled extensively in Latin America exploring and describing it for the first time in a manner generally considered to be a modern scientific point of view His description of the journey was written up and published in an enormous set of volumes over 21 years He was one of the first to propose that the lands bordering the Atlantic Ocean were once joined South America and Africa in particular Later his five volume work Kosmos 1845 attempted to unify the various branches of scientific knowledge Humboldt supported and worked with other scientists including Joseph Louis Gay Lussac Justus von Liebig Louis Agassiz Matthew Fontaine Maury and most notably Aimé Bonpland with whom he conducted much of his scientific exploration