Nevil Maskelyne

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Maskelyne, Nevil


Born Oct. 6, 1732, in London; died Feb. 9, 1811, in Greenwich. English astronomer.

Maskelyne graduated from Cambridge University in 1754. Beginning in 1765 he was director of the Greenwich Observatory. Maskelyne conducted observations of stars, the sun, and the planets; he also studied the moon for the purpose of determining longitudes. He selected 36 bright stars, now called Maskelyne stars, in order to relate observations of the stars to observations of the sun and planets. In 1766 he founded the English astronomical yearbook Nautical Almanac. In 1774, Maskelyne attempted to determine the density of the earth.


Tables for Computing the Apparent Places of the Fixt Stars and Reducing Observations of the Planets. London, 1774.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The culprit in this case was Nevil Maskelyne, a magician.
It appeared in the Royal Society's Philosophical Transactions as part of an investigation by England's Astronomer Royal, Nevil Maskelyne, titled "An Account of an Appearance of Light, like a Star, Seen in the dark Part of the Moon, on Friday the 7th of March, 1794." Here Maskelyne writes that soon after he learned about Wilkins, his own relation Sir George Booth and his wife paid him a visit at the Royal Observatory grounds in Greenwich.
Among the Magic Circle's founders were illusionists David Devant, its first president, and John Nevil Maskelyne.
In 1775 Nevil Maskelyne read the results to the Royal Society to confirm the effect of mountain mass.
Nevil Maskelyne died; appointed Astronomer Royal in 1765; founder of the Nautical Almanac; measured the density of the Earth.
The first person to note it was a British stage musician named Nevil Maskelyne. In 1908 he recorded dolefully that no matter how small the risk involved in performing a trick, that risk had a horrible tendency to become a likelihood on stage.
Indeed, it was endorsed by no less of an authority than John Nevil Maskelyne, perhaps the most noted British magician of the time.
I was also pleased to see a reference to David Cartwright's wonderful 1969 study of the tides at the island of Saint Helena in the South Atlantic, 208 years after Charles Mason (of Mason-Dixon fame) assisted Nevil Maskelyne in measuring sea level changes there; the project compensated for the cloudiness that prevented them from achieving their primary objective of observing the transit of Venus across the face of the Sun.
Nevil Maskelyne. Logic (and cloudy nights) should have put an end to this exercise in futility.