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Translated from the original French by Bernard Sheehan; Edited and with an introduction by Dr. William Sheehan, a neuroscientist and amateur astronomer who is also a research fellow of the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona
Presents the life and work of the French astronomer Le Verrier who discovered the planet Neptune and became famous
Provides a comprehensive picture of astronomy in France and to some extent the whole world at the middle of the 19th century
Explains all important scientific points in simple terms for the non-specialist
Le Verrier was a superb scientist. His discovery of Neptune in 1846 made him the most famous astronomer of his time. He produced a complete theory of the motions of the planets which served as a basis for planetary ephemeris for a full century. Doing this, he discovered an anomaly in the motion of Mercury which later became the first proof of General Relativity. He also founded European meteorology. However his arrogance and bad temper created many enemies, and he was even fired from his position of Director of the Paris Observatory.
Content Level »Research
Keywords »19th century astronomy - French celestial mechanics - Le Verrier astronomer - Mercury anomaly discovery - Neptune discovery - Paris observatory director - history of astronomy - planet hunting techniques - solar system history