Weather Fundamentals

Early Weather History

Who wrote the Meteorologica?

The Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 B.C.E.) released his Meteorologica around 340 B.C.E. It was this work that gave us the term “meteorology”; in Aristotle’s time, the word meteor referred not just to extraterrestrial rocks entering the atmosphere but rather to anything up in the sky, including clouds, rain, snow, etc. Meteorologica is the first comprehensive text written on the subject, at least in the Western world. Many of the theories expressed in Aristotle’s work, however, are based on mythology and other misplaced notions of what causes weather. For instance, the philosopher believed that hurricanes resulted from a “moral conflict” between “evil” and “good” winds.


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