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Astronomers Royal


12 People in group

Astronomer Royal is the title awarded by the Royal Household to a prominent scientist working in the field of astronomy. John Flamsteed was the first Astronomer Royal, appointed by King Charles II in 1675 'to apply himself with the most exact care and diligence to the rectifying of the tables of the motions of the heavens, and the places of the fixed stars, so as to find out the so much desired longitude of places for the perfecting of the art of navigation'. Until 1972, the Astronomer Royal was also Director of the Royal Observatory, Greenwich. Today, it is a largely honorary post with a stipend of £100. The appointment has led to much advancement in the area, including Edmund Halley's discovery of the periodic nature of comets.

Sir George Biddell Airy

Sir George Biddell Airy

1801-1892
Astronomer Royal
Sitter associated with 24 portraits
John Flamsteed

John Flamsteed

1646-1719
The first Royal Astronomer
Sitter in 8 portraits
Edmond Halley

Edmond Halley

1656-1742
Astronomer
Sitter in 13 portraits
Martin John Rees, Baron Rees of Ludlow

Martin John Rees, Baron Rees of Ludlow

1942-
Professor of Astronomy and Cosmology and President of the Royal Society
Sitter in 3 portraits
Sir Martin Ryle

Sir Martin Ryle

1918-1984
Radio astronomer
Sitter in 1 portrait
James Bradley

James Bradley

1693-1762
Astronomer Royal
Sitter in 4 portraits
Sir William Henry Mahoney Christie

Sir William Henry Mahoney Christie

1845-1922
Astronomer
Sitter in 3 portraits
Sir Frank Watson Dyson

Sir Frank Watson Dyson

1868-1939
Astronomer
Sitter in 6 portraits
Harold Spencer Jones

Harold Spencer Jones

1890-1960
Astronomer Royal, 1933-1955
Sitter in 13 portraits
Nevil Maskelyne

Nevil Maskelyne

1732-1811
Astronomer Royal
Sitter in 4 portraits
Sir Arnold Whittaker Wolfendale

Sir Arnold Whittaker Wolfendale

1927-
Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of Durham and Astronomer Royal
Sitter in 1 portrait
Sir Richard van der Riet Woolley

Sir Richard van der Riet Woolley

1906-1986
Astronomer
Sitter in 10 portraits