Maskelyne's plumb line experiment, 1774

Maskelyne's plumb line experiment, 1774

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Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Maskelyne's plumb line experiment. Map of Schiehallion mountain (centre), in Scotland, and its surroundings, the location for Maskelyne's plumb line experiment of 1774, to determine the density of the Earth. Nevil Maskelyne (1732-1811), was the British Astronomer Royal. He measured the deflection of a plumb line towards the mountain from observatories to the north and south (marked on map). Maskelyne was awarded the Copley Medal by the Royal Society for this work. Map published in Philosophical Transactions (Volume 68, 1778), the journal of the Royal Society.

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