City Seductions

This weekend the Nürnberg Stadt(ver)führungen 2009 are taking place and I am involved. The name is a play on words in German, combining the words Stadt (city) Verführung (seduction) and Führung (guided tour). The principle is actually quite simple, over a period of three days literally thousands of themed guided tours of the city are offered for a minimal charge to the general public.

As this is the International Year of Astronomy (IYA) my friends and I are involved (not for the first time) in a small way. On Saturday morning we are presenting four half hour lectures together with the town library on individual aspects of the history of astronomy in Nürnberg. My friend Hans is holding two lectures, one on Albrecht Dürer’s star map and one on Doppelmayr’s Celestial Atlas from 1742, my friend Günther is lecturing on astrolabes (Nürnberg was the main European centre for their production in the 16th century) and I shall lecture on the globe maker Johannes Schöner, who will at a later date be one of my local heroes here on my blog, as will Dürer. In the Afternoon Hans and I are both offering guided tours of our astronomy trail, his in German, mine in English for the tourists.

Last time we took part in the Stadt(ver)führungen the response was very positive so I’m looking forward to Saturday. However as I still haven’t formulated my lecture I wont have much time for my blog and so activity will probably be fairly low this week. Don’t worry I haven’t given up yet and will be back next week.


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