George Airy, British astronomer

George Airy, British astronomer

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Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Sir George Biddell Airy (1801-1892), British astronomer. Sir Airy's writings were divided between mathematical physics and astronomy, such as his observations of differences in the planetary motions of Earth and Venus that had gone unnoticed in previous astronomical calculations. His achievements, which also include establishing the Prime Meridian at Greenwich, were highly regarded by his 19th century peers. He was appointed Astronomer Royal in 1836 as well as being elected president to the Royal Astronomical Society, Royal Society and British Association for the Advancement of Science. Airy died aged 91, in his family cottage in Suffolk, England. This portrait was painted by his granddaughter Anna Airy, a well known landscape artist.

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