The Middle East is the birthplace of astronomy and the centre for its development during the medieval period. In this brief introduction John Steele offers an intriguing insight into Middle Eastern achievements in astronomy and their profound influence on the rest of the world. Amongst other things, the book traces the Late Babylonians' ingenious schemes for modelling planetary motion. It also reveals how medieval Islamic advances in the study of the heavens, and the design of precise astronomical instruments, led to breakthroughs by Renaissance practitioners such as Copernicus and Kepler. An invaluable introduction to one of the oldest sciences in the world.