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Herschel's discovery of Uranus, 1781

Herschel's discovery of Uranus, 1781

C014/5295

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Credit

ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Discovery of Uranus on Tuesday 13 March 1781, recorded in written notes by the German-born British astronomer William Herschel (1738-1822). The notes record that he looked at the region around the star Pollux (Beta Geminorum), and noticed a 'curious either nebulous star or perhaps a comet'. Herschel, working in Bath at the time, reported this object to others, and further observations determined it was a new planet. This made Herschel famous. He received the Copley Medal, was elected to the Royal Society, and was appointed King's Astronomer by George III. For the full page of notes, see image V700/0161.

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