Lost Discoveries

  • by Dick Teresi
  • Narrated by Peter Johnson
  • 14 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In the tradition of Daniel Boorstin, the co-founder of Omni delivers an original work of history that demonstrates why modern science rests on a foundation built by ancient and medieval non-European societies.Lost Discoveries explores the mostly unheralded scientific breakthroughs from the ancient world - Babylonians, Egyptians, Indians, Africans, New World, and Oceanic tribes, among others, and from the non-European medieval world. By example, the Egyptians developed the concept of the lowest common denominator and the Indians developed the use of zero and negative numbers. The Chinese observed, reported, and dated eclipses between 1400 and 1200 B.C. The Chinese also set the stage for later Hindu scholars, who refined the concept of particles and the void. Five thousand years ago, Sumerians were able to assert that the earth was circular. Islamic scientists fixed problems in Ptolemy's geocentric cosmology. The Quechuan Indians of Peru were the first to vulcanize rubber.This first comprehensive, authoritative, popularly written, multicultural history of science fills in a crucial gap in the history of science.Lost Discoveries is also available in print from Simon and Schuster.

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What the Critics Say

"If you think that modern science is rooted in the golden age of Greece, you owe it to yourself to [hear this] book." (Library Journal)
"A reliable and fascinating guide to the unexplored field of multicultural science." (Amazon.com)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A worthwhile challenge

This is definately one of the more challenging audio books I've encountered and probably not meant for someone with simply a passing interest in the history of math and science. It took me months to finish, if only because I found myself going back and listening again to parts that required tremendous concentration. This is one of those selections that I really enjoyed, but probably should have opted for the text so that I could underline!
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- Kevin

Not for the faint of heart

This book is not for those who merely have a general interest in science and/or archaeology. The author gets extremely technical at times. I have two Master's degrees and at a couple of points he totally lost me. The author is repetative and loves to belabor the obvious. The book reads like a textbook but some of the conclusions are so far outside academic norms they stretch credulity. I wish I hadn't made the choice
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- Carl

Book Details

  • Release Date: 11-15-2002
  • Publisher: Random House Audio