Read Time by Alexander Waugh Online


In the vein of popular science successes such as THE CALENDAR and FERMAT'S LAST THEOREM, TIME looks at man's obsessive and ingenious efforts to measure and label the dimension that dominates our lives. Waugh looks at every aspect of time - from the Big Bang, through clock time and calendars to the end of time. Drawing on Waugh's polymathic knowledge of art, music, literatuIn the vein of popular science successes such as THE CALENDAR and FERMAT'S LAST THEOREM, TIME looks at man's obsessive and ingenious efforts to measure and label the dimension that dominates our lives. Waugh looks at every aspect of time - from the Big Bang, through clock time and calendars to the end of time. Drawing on Waugh's polymathic knowledge of art, music, literature, science and social history, this is a hugely entertaining examination of the big questions about time: how were seconds, minutes and hours agreed; how were the various calendars arrived at and why are there twelve months in a year and seven days in a week?...

Title : Time
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780747259886
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 575 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Time Reviews

  • Pam
    2019-03-12 16:33

    Very interesting subject matter which the author Alexander Waugh handles with a literary style of writing. This is a style I do not like nor one that I think fits scientific based subjects. I found Waugh's wordy delivery bogged down the great information he had to present.

  • Ryn McAtee
    2019-03-25 11:35

    Fascinating book. Waugh was able to take a complex, fairly dry subject and present it as entertaining, as well as informative. The one thing that disappointed me though was the lack of women present in the text. Yeah yeah, I know about women's historic role in the Church and in science, but I feel there were some real missed opportunities to have said, "Maybe a man didn't do this." A perfect example would have been for the chapter entitled "Menses" (for God's sake). The Ishango bone was a tool from the Upper Paleolithic era; it's characterized by tally marks in three columns. It's not really known exactly what it was used for, but take this quote from Claudia Zaslavsky: "Originally described as a record of prime numbers and doubling, Alexander Marshack later concluded, that it represented a six-month lunar calendar. The dating of the Ishango bone has been reevaluated, from about 8000 perhaps 20,000 B.C. or earlier. Similar calendar bones, dating back as much as 30,000 years, have been found in Europe. Thus far the oldest such incised bone, discovered in southern Africa and having 29 incisions, goes back about 37,000 years. Now, who but a woman keeping track of her cycles would need a lunar calendar? When I raised this question with a colleague having similar mathematical interests, he suggested that early agriculturalists might have kept such records. However, he was quick to add that women were probably the first agriculturalists." It just feels like a huge missed opportunity not to include this. Perhaps Waugh will publish a revised edition one of these days.

  • Dillon
    2019-03-05 14:24

    Alexander Waugh has written a book about a topic which is grand in scope and he has done a good job of exploring such a common, but at the same time barely understood concept. From the point of view of History TIME is a well-written book. He entertainingly explores the concept of time through history with many enjoyable anecdotes and examples. The Science is well-explained, allowing those of us without PhDs to grasp the more esoteric ideas relating to Time. Waugh is prone to wandering off-topic on an aside which is usually interesting and sometimes distracting. But his greatest failing is his thinly veiled antipathy towards religion - especially Christianity. Waugh takes every opportunity (and sometimes forces the issue) to ridicule religious beliefs, from ancient pagans to modern Catholics, be seems to discuss the pagans with a small hint of respect that is absent when he discusses Christians. At times he seems to go out of his way to share his opinion on the foolishness of Christianity, an opinion which often seems to be based upon ignorance and misunderstanding. This left me with a sour taste after reading this book, which is a shame because if TIME had been written without this bitterness it would have been a very entertaining read.

  • Peter
    2019-03-14 10:33

    One of those books you can read again and again!: ...The sort of book you want to read again and again!The is is an extraordinary book - not just because of all the fascinating things that it tells you about time, but because of the way the author plays the reader. He lets you suppose one thing and changes tack, telling you that what you had just learned was not in fact true. The reader needs to stay on his toes, not be fooled by this ingenious method, the author seems to be telling us not to take anythnng for granted. The style is witty and entertaining, but the book also manages to impart a huge amount of condensed information and makes this complicated subject extremely interesting in all of its cultural, historical and scientific dimensions. I was so impressed that I have read it now three times. I have read twenty or so books on time but this one is by far and away the most appealing. Waugh's theory on the derivation of the seven-day week beats them all!

  • Ron
    2019-03-19 11:18

    A strange way to talk about how our time systems came to exist the way they are now. With the exception of the Day, Month and Year, all of our other time frames are human manufactured, and the way that they came to exist is fascinating. This book describes in minute detail every time component from the second up to the Millenium, and then jumps into some high-level physics and talkes about relativity and quantum mechanics.

  • Dan
    2019-03-25 15:09

    A witty history of time... everything from how we ended up with a 7-day week, and why our fascination with decades is just as absurd as the Gnostic's belief in the spirituality of numbers... to how physicists define space-time. The writer's smart and conversational. It's also a good book to read in stages... I read it in fits and starts over the course of several months.

  • Sherwood Smith
    2019-02-26 14:39

    This sprightly, delightful book is just the sort of read for an idle afternoon, running through the history of time keeping, with some side jaunts into the mathematics of time. There are also reveries on time according to various individuals, as well as cultures. (I would have loved more of this, and less of the math, which just taxes my dyslexic brain, but others might relish the number talk.)

  • Amanda Witt
    2019-03-08 12:19

    Well written, with a chapter devoted to each of the units of time that we know now - starting with seconds, and going all the way up to a millenium. The last few chapters deal with complex time and eternity.

  • Brittany
    2019-03-22 13:16

    If this book was not filled with Waugh's very unfunny attempts at humour this book would have been worth 5 stars.

  • Kent
    2019-03-03 11:36

    incomplete - got halfway through it, but cant read much any more - buh-bye book

  • Russell L
    2019-03-21 15:21

    Interesting discussion of the history of the measurement of time with some discussion of the philosophy of time

  • Abel Caine fiji
    2019-03-27 16:32

    Totally enjoyable book about humanity's attempts to measure and try to stop time

  • Charlie Schroeder
    2019-03-03 14:18

    What wit and research. The historical parts are fascinating, the science was hard to grasp. Probably just my small frontal lobe that couldn't grasp it.

  • Eric Bruen
    2019-02-26 12:12

    I give up - I'm bored, I don't care and I don't care for his writing style. I need fiction. I'm still giving it three stars because it isn't bad, just isn't for me.