• An unsigned article on Nordlyset (1840) by Hans Christian Ørsted
    Vol 10 (2020)

    The tenth volume in the series presents a hitherto overlooked item in the oeuvre of the famous discoverer of electromagnetism, Hans Christian Ørsted (1777–1851). A highly influential figure in cutting-edge science internationally, Ørsted was also active as a populariser of various kinds of academic discoveries and theories within nineteenth-century Denmark. However, no separate publication on the aurora borealis by Ørsted has been known until now. It is in one of the many contemporary collections of miscellanies for the general public – namely, in Dansk Folkekalender for the year 1841 (printed 1840) – that Kira Moss has discovered his unsigned article on “Nordlyset” [The Northern Light]. In her introduction, Moss presents evidence of Ørsted’s authorship, contextualises the place of the northern lights in Denmark in the period known as Romanticism, and presents a detailed summary of his own theory. As a supplement, she provides a complete English translation of Ørsted’s article.

  • Adam Oehlenschläger: Biergtrolden (1803 / 1861)
    Vol 9 (2020)

    The ninth volume in the series derives from an MA course in Scandinavian literature entitled ‘Dem Polarlicht auf der Spur. Wissenschaftshistorische und kulturwissen­schaftliche Erkundigungen’, given by Marie-Theres Federhofer at Humboldt University Berlin in 2019. In her introduction, MA student Laura Massini Nielsen analyses the role of the aurora borealis in Biergtrolden (The Mountain Troll), the very first poem of the seminal debut collection of Digte (Poems) by the Danish Romantic author Adam Oehlenschläger. As a supplement, a prose translation of the poem is included.

  • Sneedronningen (1844 / 1849), written by Hans Cristian Andersen, illustrated by Thomas Vilhelm Pedersen
    Vol 8 (2020)

    The eighth volume in the series derives from an MA course in Scandinavian literature entitled ‘Dem Polarlicht auf der Spur. Wissenschaftshistorische und kulturwissen­schaftliche Erkundigungen’, given by Marie-Theres Federhofer at Humboldt University Berlin in 2019. Course participants wrote content summaries of selected texts as part of their exam, some of which were selected for the Aurorae Borealis Studia Classica series. The first student text edited and adapted for publication in the series is by Franziska Runge. She has written about one of the most cherished fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen, Sneedronningen (The Snow Queen), first published in 1844 and then reissued with illustrations by Thomas Vilhelm Pedersen in December 1849 (official year of publication: 1850). As demonstrated in Runge’s introduction, Andersen was well aware of the theories of electromagnetism promoted by the physicist Ørsted at precisely this time. Although a Romantic author, Andersen not only endows the aurora with a symbolic role in the narrative, he also alludes to contemporary scientific debates regarding the properties and origin of the phenomenon.

  • Erich Pontoppidan: The aurora borealis as described in Norges Naturlige Historie (1752) / Natürliche Historie von Norwegen (1753) / Natural History of Norway (1755)
    Vol 7 (2019)

    The seventh volume in the series consists of extracts from Erich Pontoppidan's Natural History of Norway, originally published in Danish in 1752 and soon followed by a German (1753) and an English edition (1755). All three editions are included, with extracts covering Pontoppidan's treatment of the aurora borealis and closely related subjects. They are introduced by a biographical essay and summaries of contents by Per Pippin Aspaas from UiT The Arctic University of Norway.

  • Sophus Tromholt: Under Nordlysets Straaler (1885) / Under the Rays of the Aurora Borealis (1885)
    Vol 6 (2017)
    The sixth volume in the series consists of Sophus Tromholt's monograph Under Nordlysets Straaler, first published in Danish in 1885 and then in a slightly different English version (Under the Rays of the Aurora Borealis, in two vols.) later in the same year. Both editions are included here. They are introduced by a biographical essay and summaries of contents by Kira Moss from UiT The Arctic University of Norway.
  • Jens Christian Spidberg: Historische Demonstration und Anmerckung über die Eigenschafften und Ursachen des so genandten Nord-Lichts (1724) / (1728)
    Vol 5 (2017)
    The fifth volume in the series is introduced by a biographical essay and summary of contents by Per Pippin Aspaas from UiT The Arctic University of Norway. It consists of the following digitized texts: Jens Christian Spidberg's short monograph Historische Demonstration und Anmerckung über die Eigenschafften und Ursachen des so genandten Nord-Lichts ('Historical Demonstration of, and Commentary on, the Properties and Causes of the so-called Northern Light'), published in 1724; a reprint of the same text, accompanied by a critical article by Johann Kanold, both from 1728; and a newspaper article that Spidberg wrote in 1738.
  • Maximilianus Hell: Lucis Boreæ Theoria nova (MS, c. 1770) / Aurorae Borealis Theoria Nova (1776) / Neue Theorie des Nordlichtes (1792)
    Vol 4 (2016)
    The fourth volume in the series consists of Maximilianus (Maximilian) Hell's monograph on the Aurora Borealis, first written as a paper for the Royal Society of Sciences in Copenhagen (MS, c. 1770), then published in a slightly enhanced Latin edition (1776) and finally in a German edition by L.A. Jungnitz (1792). Both printed editions, as well as the original manuscript, are included here. They are introduced by a biographical essay and summaries of contents by the classical scholar and historian of science Per Pippin Aspaas from UiT The Arctic University of Norway.
  • Selim Lemström: L'Aurore Boréale (1886) / Om polarljuset eller norrskenet (1886)
    Vol 3 (2016)
    The third volume in the series consists of Selim Lemström’s monograph on the Aurora Borealis, published in the year 1886 in both a French and a Swedish edition (titled L'Aurore Boréale and Om polarljuset eller norrskenet, respectively). Both editions have been digitized from copies kept at the University Library in Tromsø. They are introduced by a biographical essay and summaries of contents by the historian of science Päivi Maria Pihlaja from Helsinki University.
  • Sophus Tromholt: Om Nordlysets Perioder / Sur les périodes de l'aurore boréale (1882)
    Vol 2 (2016)
    The second volume in the series consists of Sophus Tromholt’s bilingual article Om Nordlysets Perioder / Sur les périodes de l'aurore boréale ['On the Periods of the Aurora Borealis'], originally published in the Yearbook of the Danish Meteorological Institute for the year 1880 (published in 1882). The article has been digitized from a copy kept at the University Library of the University of Bergen. It is introduced by a biographical essay and a summary of contents by the Copenhagen-based, independent scholar Kira Moss.
  • Sophus Tromholt: Catalog der in Norwegen bis Juni 1878 beobachteten Nordlichter (1902)
    Vol 1 (2016)

    The first volume in the series consists of Sophus Tromholt’s Catalog der in Norwegen bis Juni 1878 beobachteten Nordlichter ['Catalogue of northern lights observed in Norway until June 1878'], which was published posthumously by J. Fr. Schroeter in 1902. The book has been digitized from a copy kept at the University Library in Tromsø. It is introduced by a biographical essay and a summary of contents by the Copenhagen-based, independent scholar Kira Moss.