Edmond Halley

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Related to Edmond Halley: Charles Messier, John Flamsteed

Halley, Edmond

Halley, Edmond (hălˈē, hôˈlē), 1656–1742, English astronomer and mathematician. He is particularly noted as the first astronomer to predict the return of a comet and the first to point out the use of a transit of Venus in determining the parallax of the sun. In 1676 he went to St. Helena to observe the southern skies and as a result made a catalog of 341 stars of the Southern Hemisphere. In 1677 he made the first complete observation of a transit of Mercury. He financed the publication of Isaac Newton's Principia and helped to prepare it for the press. On the basis of Newton's theory, Halley calculated the orbit of the great comet of 1682—since known as Halley's comet—and predicted its return in 1758. In 1698–1700 he made one of the first studies of compass variations in the North Atlantic. He was made astronomer royal in 1720. He observed the moon through the complete revolution of its nodes; this took 18 years. Other discoveries of Halley's are the proper motions of the stars and the acceleration of the moon's mean motion. His noted synopsis of known comets appeared in 1705; his Tabulae astronomicae (1749, tr. 1752) was published posthumously.


See his Correspondence and Papers (repr. 1975); biography by C. A. Ronan (1970); L. Baldwin, Edmond Halley and His Comet (1985).

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Halley, Edmond

(1656–1742) British mathematician and astronomer; calculated orbit of comet named after him. [Br. Hist.: EB, IV: 860]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The film concludes by examining the professional relationship between Isaac Newton and Edmond Halley, who were inspired by the work of Galileo and Kepler.
Discovered by the Portuguese in 1502, and settled by the British in 1659, famous visitors include Captain Cook, Charles Darwin, Captain Bligh, Edmond Halley, Napoleon's adversary the Duke of Wellington, Mason and Dixon, and the real William Hickey.
Over the years, the island has received many distinguished visitors, including the astronomer Edmond Halley in 1677, who came to study the stars of the Southern Hemisphere, Captain Cook, who stopped at St Helena in May 1775, on his second circumnavigation, and, in 1836, Charles Darwin, who on landing from the Beagle, reported `I so much enjoyed my rambles among the roads and mountains of St Helena'.
(I recommend all those not conversant with the salient details of the great man's life to spend a few minutes with the Encyclopaedia Britannica before embarking on this volume.) Three hundred and fifteen years have passed since Isaac Newton, thanks to considerable financial and moral support from Edmond Halley (of comet fame), published his Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica and, ever since, what is meant by the word 'science', our perceptions of 'genius' and the very image of Isaac Newton have all undergone a process of metamorphosis.
The author provides an extended analysis of the thought of Isaac Newton and Edmond Halley and argues convincingly that they appropriated many aspects of traditional comet lore into the new science.
He in turn appointed scientist and astronomer Edmond Halley, who lent his name to the famous comet, to oversee the mint at Chester Castle.
No systematic astronomical observations of the far southern skies were made, however, until the English astronomer Edmond Halley (1656-1742) traveled to the island of St.
You look up and see Halley's Comet--through a pair of binoculars, perhaps--and you are looking at the same comet (or very nearly the same comet: the nucleus has lost many meters of ice since the perihelion passage of 1682) that Edmond Halley saw the summer after he and Mary Tooke were first wed.
The successful forecast made Halley the first comet internationally recognized as someone's property it was Edmond Halley's comet.
Science writer Wakefield describes Edmond Halley's greatest achievement, which was not predicting the course of the comet that bears his name, but accurate navigation involving the determination of true v.