India's contribution to the science of astronomy is priceless. From Aryabhata to Bhaskara to Chandrasekhara Samanta, Indian astronomers and astronomy raconteurs can be credited with interesting theories and discoveries. The detailed mathematical treatment of the science of astronomy can be traced back to around 400 A.D, but the origin of the science itself can be traced back to a much earlier period. Some references regarding nakshatras, solar and lunar months etc., are available in the Vedas, and more details are available in the puranas. The earliest astronomical text available is the 'Vedanga-Jyothisham ' (1200 BC). As the name itself suggests, this text is a part of the Vedic literature.
The calendar given in this text had been in use for some period. This period is known as the 'Vedanga-Jyothisha period'. This period is followed by the 'Siddhantic period' (500 A.D). During this period an entirely different class of astronomical texts called as the 'Siddhantas' were composed. Siddhanta means final/correct conclusion in Sanskrit. These texts contain detailed and more precise mathematical solutions to astronomical problems, namely calculation positions [sun, moon, mercury, Venus (sukra), mars, Jupiter, Saturn (sani)] and other related quantities like the duration of the day, sunrise and sunset, eclipses so on.
'Aryabhateeyam' of Aryabhata composed around 499 A.D is the one of the early texts available to us. The Siddhantic text which is most commonly studied is 'Surya-siddhanta'.
Some of the great astronomers and their related works are given below:
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