Discovery of Halley's Comet, 1705

Discovery of Halley's Comet, 1705

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Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Discovery of Halley's Comet. Table of orbital data for 24 comets observed between 1337 and 1698, and published in A Synopsis of the Astronomy of Comets (1705), by the English astronomer Edmond Halley (1656-1742). It was in this paper that Halley announced his theory that the comets seen in 1456, 1531, 1607 and 1682 (the last three are shown in this table) were the same object. In the same paper, he made his successful prediction of its return in 1758. The comet was subsequently named Halley's Comet in his honour. The original paper was published in Latin in Philosophical Transactions, the journal of the Royal Society. At the time, Halley was Savilian Professor of Geometry at Oxford University.

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