Giovanni Domenico Cassini

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Cassini, Giovanni Domenico


(Jean Dominique Cas-sini). Born June 8, 1625, in Perinaldo; died Sept. 14, 1712, in Paris. Astronomer. An Italian by birth. Member of the Paris Academy of Sciences (1669). Director of the Paris Observatory (from 1669).

Cassini discovered the rotation of Jupiter (1665) and Mars (1666), four new satillites of Saturn (1671–84), and the division of Saturn’s rings into an inner ring and an outer ring by a dark gap (the Cassini division). He also investigated the optical liberation of the moon. Cassini made the first reliable determination of the sun’s parallax from joint observations of Mars with the French astronomer J. Richer (9.5“-10.0”; modern value, 8.8”).

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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The observatory, founded in 1667 (pre-dating the Royal Observatory, Greenwich), whose first director was Jean-Dominique Cassini, is not merely a museum, like our ROG, but combines a similar educational and cultural function with that of a working, major research establishment employing 900 people at its sites in central Paris, the suburb of Meudon, and Nancay.
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