BOOKS in English

The cover of the second edition of "A Breathtaking Window on the Universe"
January 18, 2015

A Breathtaking Window on the Universe: A guide to the observatory at the Roque de los Muchachos SECOND EDITION” (Non-Fiction).   by Sheila M. Crosby Paperback, 164 pages A5 (16 more than the first edition) Welcome to the Roque de Los Muchachos, where 16 telescopes from 19 nations use the best night sky in Europe to explore the cosmos. Find out what it’s like to work in this strange world…


Happy Birthday Copernicus

  Nicolaus Copernicus was born in Torun, Poland on February 19, 1473. From the ancient Greeks, everyone in Europe believed that the Earth was the centre of the universe. The great work of Copernicus De revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres), published in 1543, showed that the sun was at the center. You can see evidence of this yourself with binoculars or a small telescope. Both…

February 19, 2013

St. Catherine’s Fort (Castillo de Santa Catalina)

In 1553 French pirates attacked Santa Cruz de La Palma, so they built a small fort to defend the town from future attacks. This was just a platform with a tower, and it was destroyed by flooding during a storm in 1671. In 1676 work started on the current fort, and it was finished in 1701. It’s nothing like the tower of London, but then it didn’t need to be….

January 29, 2013

Local history: The Tazacorte Martyrs

In 1570, a party of Jesuit missionaries were on their way from Portugal to Brazil. They broke their journey in Puerto de Tazacorte. It was an unplanned stop: they’d been heading for Santa Cruz de la Palma, but the winds were against them. On arrival in Tazacorte, Fr. Acevedo was amazed to find that the owner of the estate was an old friend from Oporto, don Melchor de Monteverde y…

July 10, 2012

Happy Birthday PrincipiaCumpleaños Feliz a Principia Alles Gute zum Geburtstag Principia

Newton's Pincipia
July 5, 2012

Isaac Newton’s Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica, (Latin for “Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy”) was published 325 years ago today, on 5 July 1687. This is the book that laid out Newtonian Physics. It’s an astonishing book.  In the section on the orbit of the planets and their moons, Newton showed that gravity depends on the square of the distance between massive bodies, and that the gravity acts as though it’s…


Happy Birthday, Teneguia!

The eruption of Teneguía, Fuencaliente, 1971
October 28, 2011

  The oldest rocks on La Palma are 2,000,000 years old, which is very young for geology. But the youngest rocks are just 40 years old, and it’s their birthday this month. The Teneguía volcano erupted during October and November of 1971. My husband was a teenager at the time, and he remembers going to see it from the San Antonio volcano, and he remembers hearing the deep rumbles at…