By M. T. Brück
Born in eire within the mid-nineteenth century, Agnes Mary Clerke accomplished repute because the writer of A background of Astronomy in the course of the 19th century. via her quarter-century profession, she grew to become the major commentator on astronomy and astrophysics within the English-speaking global. This biography describes not just the existence and paintings of this remarkable girl, but additionally chronicles the advance of astronomy within the final a long time of pre-Einstein technological know-how. alongside the way in which, it introduces a number of the nice figures in astronomy of that age, together with Huggins, Lockyer, Holden, and Pickering.
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Summers were spent in the spa resort of Bagna di Lucca near the Mediterranean Coast, a favourite retreat of the large English colony in Florence. 27 They include descriptions of traditional religious festivities in Florence, celebrations of Christmas in Rome and of Easter in Naples, and village life and wine-making in the Tuscan Appennines. 29 As far as is known, neither sister recorded her personal experiences of the dramatic public events of the unification of Italy or of the First Vatican Council convened by Pope Pius IX in 1870.
In 1855 he stood for Parliament in a by-election and was elected a Liberal Member for his native county of Cork. He held his seat by large majorities in successive general elections in 1857 and 1859. In the case of Irish members of Parliament at Westminster the description Liberal applied to all those who were reformers, though their allegiances were not all identical. Daniel O’Connell, representing the Catholic and Nationalist cause, had achieved Catholic Emancipation in 1829 (which applied to Catholics in the whole of Great Britain) as part of a campaign which included the Repeal of the Union of Great Britain and Ireland.
The book was written in an attractive style, enlivened by engaging biographical sketches of the principal players in the saga. ‘There are many reasons’ she said ‘for preferring a history to a formal treatise on astronomy. In a treatise, what we know is set forth. A history tells us, in addition, how we came to know it. The story to be told leaves the marvels of imagination far behind and requires no embellishment from literary art or highflown phrases. ’ Like Grant’s book, there were no illustrations or diagrams.
Agnes Mary Clerke and the Rise of Astrophysics by M. T. Brück