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John Fredrick William Herschel
(1792 - 1871) U.K.

John Fredrick Herschel

Astronomer and scientist


Son of the astronomer William Herschel, besides his father and mother Mary, he was educated by his aunt Caroline Herschel. John spent long periods with his aunt during the vacations and was greatly influenced by Caroline. She saw him educated at Cambridge, make a name for himself as a mathematician, become elected to the Royal Society. John joined his father in research in astronomy and was awarded the Copley Medal of the Royal Society for his achievements.

John became director of of the Cape of Good Hope observatory in South Africa in 1834, where he discovered thousands of close double stars, clusters and nebulae, reported in 1847. His inventions include astronomical instruments, sensitized photographic paper, and the use of sodium hyposulfite for fixing it.


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