READ Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom

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List of notable or famous astronomers from the United Kingdom, with bios and photos, including the top astronomers born in the United Kingdom and even some popular astronomers who immigrated to the United Kingdom. If you're trying to find out the names of famous British astronomers then this list is the perfect resource for you. These astronomers are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known astronomer from the United Kingdom is included when available.

Stephen Hawking and Arthur Stanley Eddington are included on this list along with many more.

This historic astronomers from the United Kingdom list can help answer the questions "Who are some British astronomers of note?" and "Who are the most famous astronomers from the United Kingdom?" These prominent astronomers of the United Kingdom may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected British astronomers.

Use this list of renowned British astronomers to discover some new astronomers that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. (102 items)

1
Adolph Friedrich Lindemann is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Adolph Friedrich Lindemann Died at 81 (1846-1927) Adolph Friedrich Lindemann was a German-born, British engineer, businessman, and amateur astronomer.

2
Alastair Reynolds is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Alastair Reynolds age 52 Alastair Preston Reynolds is a British science fiction author. He specialises in dark hard science fiction and space opera. He spent his early years in Cornwall, moved back to Wales before going ...more

3
Alfred Fowler is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Alfred Fowler Died at 72 (1868-1940) Alfred Fowler, CBE FRS was an English astronomer. Not to be confused with American astrophysicist William Alfred Fowler. He was born in Wilsden, Yorkshire and educated at London's Normal School ...more

4
Andrew Ainslie Common is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Andrew Ainslie Common Died at 62 (1841-1903) Andrew Ainslie Common FRS was an English amateur astronomer best known for his pioneering work in astrophotography.

5
Andrew Claude de la Cherois Cr... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Andrew Claude de la Cherois Crommelin Died at 74 (1865-1939) Andrew Claude de la Cherois Crommelin was an astronomer of French and Huguenot descent. He was educated in England at Marlborough College and Trinity College, Cambridge. He worked at the Royal ...more

6
Andrew Graham is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Andrew Graham Died at 93 (1815-1908) Andrew Graham, born in County Fermanagh, Ireland, was an Irish astronomer/computer. He discovered the asteroid 9 Metis in 1848 whilst employed at Markree Observatory in County Sligo. He later ...more

7
Annie Scott Dill Maunder is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Annie Scott Dill Maunder Died at 79 (1868-1947) Annie Scott Dill Maunder, née Russell was an Irish astronomer and mathematician.

8
Antony Hewish is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Antony Hewish age 93 Antony Hewish FRS is a British radio astronomer who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1974 for his work on the development of radio aperture synthesis and its role in the discovery of pulsars. ...more

9
Arthur Stanley Eddington is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Arthur Stanley Eddington Died at 62 (1882-1944) Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington, OM, FRS was a British astronomer, physicist, and mathematician of the early 20th century who did his greatest work in astrophysics. He was also a philosopher of ...more

10
Arthur Stanley Williams is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Arthur Stanley Williams Died at 77 (1861-1938) Arthur Stanley Williams was an English solicitor and amateur astronomer. He dedicated himself to the telescopic observation of the planets. He also was enthusiastic about yachting, winning the ...more

11
V. A. Firsoff is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
V. A. Firsoff Died at 69 (1912-1981) Valdemar Axel Firsoff was known principally as an amateur astronomer. He was born in 1912 of Swedish descent, and died on 19 November 1981. He lived in Lochearnhead, Scotland, before moving to ...more

12
Bertrand Meigh Peek is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Bertrand Meigh Peek Died at 74 (1891-1965) Bertrand Meigh Peek M.A. F.R.A.S. was a British astronomer. Peek used an observatory at Solihull, Birmingham, England, from 1923 until 1947 to make a series of observations The observatory was ...more

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Brian G. Marsden is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Brian G. Marsden Died at 73 (1937-2010) Brian Geoffrey Marsden was a British astronomer and the longtime director of the Minor Planet Center at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

14
Brian G. W. Manning is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Brian G. W. Manning age 92 Brian G. W. Manning was an English astronomer who discovered several asteroids. He was born in 1926 in Birmingham. He constructed his first mirror from a piece of glass that a World War II bomb ...more

15
Chandra Wickramasinghe is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Chandra Wickramasinghe age 79 Nalin Chandra Wickramasinghe is a Sri Lankan-born British mathematician, astronomer and astrobiologist. He is currently Professor and Director of the Buckingham Centre for Astrobiology at the ...more

16
Charles Green is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Charles Green Died at 36 (1735-1771) Charles Green was a British astronomer, noted for his assignment by the Royal Society in 1768 to the expedition sent to the Pacific Ocean in order to observe the transit of Venus aboard James ...more

17
Charles Piazzi Smyth is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Charles Piazzi Smyth Died at 81 (1819-1900) Charles Piazzi Smyth FRSE FRS FRAS FRSSA, was Astronomer Royal for Scotland from 1846 to 1888, well known for many innovations in astronomy and his pyramidological and metrological studies of ...more

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David C. Jewitt is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
David C. Jewitt age 60 David C. Jewitt is a professor of astronomy in the Earth, Planetary, and Space Science Department of UCLA.

19
David Gill is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
David Gill Died at 71 (1843-1914) Sir David Gill FRS was a Scottish astronomer who is known for measuring astronomical distances, for astrophotography, and for geodesy. He spent much of his career in South Africa.

20
David J. Asher is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
David J. Asher age 52 David J. Asher is a British astronomer, who works at the Armagh Observatory in Northern Ireland. He studied mathematics at Cambridge and received his doctorate from Oxford. He is known for the ...more

21
Donald Lynden-Bell is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Donald Lynden-Bell age 83 Donald Lynden-Bell CBE FRS is an English astrophysicist, best known for his theories that galaxies contain massive black holes at their centre, and that such black holes are the principal source ...more

22
Duncan Steel is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Duncan Steel age 62 Duncan I. Steel FRAS, is a British scientist born in Midsomer Norton, Somerset. Currently he lives in Wellington, New Zealand, but holds visiting positions as a Professor of Astrobiology at the ...more

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23
Edmond Halley is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Edmond Halley Died at 86 (1656-1742) Edmond Halley, FRS was an English astronomer, geophysicist, mathematician, meteorologist, and physicist who is best known for computing the orbit of the eponymous Halley's Comet. He was the ...more

24
Edward Arthur Milne is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Edward Arthur Milne Died at 54 (1896-1950) Edward Arthur Milne FRS was a British astrophysicist and mathematician.

25
Edward James Stone is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Edward James Stone Died at 66 (1831-1897) Edward James Stone was an English astronomer. He was born in Notting Hill, London to Edward and Sarah Stone. Educated at the City of London School, he obtained a studentship at King's College ...more

26
Edward Sabine is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Edward Sabine Died at 95 (1788-1883) General Sir Edward Sabine KCB FRS was an Irish astronomer, geophysicist, ornithologist,explorer, soldier and the 30th President of the Royal Society. Two branches of Sabine's work are notable: ...more

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Edward Walter Maunder is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Edward Walter Maunder Died at 77 (1851-1928) Walter Maunder was an English astronomer best remembered for his study of sunspots and the solar magnetic cycle that led to his identification of the period from 1645 to 1715 that is now known ...more

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Edwin Holmes is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Edwin Holmes Died at 81 (1838-1919) Edwin Holmes was an English amateur astronomer. He discovered the periodic comet 17P/Holmes on 6 November 1892, and his discovery was confirmed within days at the Royal Observatory Greenwich.

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Ernest William Brown is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Ernest William Brown Died at 72 (1866-1938) Ernest William Brown FRS was a British mathematician and astronomer, who spent the majority of his career working in the United States. His life's work was the study of the Moon's motion and the ...more

30
Frederick John Marrian Stratto... is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Frederick John Marrian Stratton Died at 79 (1881-1960) Lieutenant-Colonel Frederick John Marrian Stratton DSO OBE TD DL FRS PRAS was a British astrophysicist, Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Cambridge from 1928 to 1947 and a decorated ...more

31
Francis Baily is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Francis Baily Died at 70 (1774-1844) Francis Baily was an English astronomer. He is most famous for his observations of 'Baily's beads' during an eclipse of the Sun. Bailey was also a major figure in the early history of the Royal ...more

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Frank Watson Dyson is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Frank Watson Dyson Died at 71 (1868-1939) Sir Frank Watson Dyson, KBE, FRS was an English astronomer and Astronomer Royal who is remembered today largely for introducing time signals from Greenwich, England, and for the role he played ...more

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33
Fred Hoyle is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Fred Hoyle Died at 86 (1915-2001) Sir Fred Hoyle FRS was a famous English astronomer noted primarily for the theory of stellar nucleosynthesis and his often controversial stances on other scientific matters—in particular his ...more

34
George Alcock is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
George Alcock Died at 88 (1912-2000) George Eric Deacon Alcock was an English astronomer. He was one of the most successful visual discoverers of novae and comets. Initially, his interest in astronomy involved observation of ...more

35
George Biddell Airy is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
George Biddell Airy Died at 91 (1801-1892) Sir George Biddell Airy, KCB, PRS was an English mathematician and astronomer, Astronomer Royal from 1835 to 1881. His many achievements include work on planetary orbits, measuring the mean ...more

36
George Darwin is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
George Darwin Died at 67 (1845-1912) Sir George Howard Darwin KCB FRS was an English astronomer and mathematician.

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George Parker, 2nd Earl of Mac... is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
George Parker, 2nd Earl of Macclesfield Died at 74 (1690-1764) George Parker, 2nd Earl of Macclesfield, PRS was an English peer and astronomer. Styled Viscount Parker from 1721 to 1732, he was Member of Parliament for Wallingford from 1722 to 1727, but his ...more

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38
Harold Spencer Jones is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Harold Spencer Jones Died at 70 (1890-1960) Sir Harold Spencer Jones KBE FRS was an English astronomer. He became renowned as an authority on positional astronomy and served as Astronomer Royal for 23 years. Although born ...more

39
Heather Couper is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Heather Couper age 68 Heather Anita Couper CBE CPhys, is a British astronomer who popularized astronomy in the 1980s and also the 1990s on British television, and was president of the British Astronomical Association ...more

40
Herbert Dingle is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Herbert Dingle Died at 88 (1890-1978) Herbert Dingle was an English physicist and natural philosopher, who served as president of the Royal Astronomical Society from 1951 to 1953. He is best known for his opposition to Albert ...more

41
Herbert Hall Turner is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Herbert Hall Turner Died at 69 (1861-1930) Herbert Hall Turner FRS was a British astronomer and seismologist.

42
Isaac Roberts is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Isaac Roberts Died at 75 (1829-1904) Isaac Roberts was a Welsh engineer and business man best known for his work as an amateur astronomer, pioneering the field of astrophotography of nebulae. He was a member of the Liverpool ...more

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43
James Bradley is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
James Bradley Died at 69 (1693-1762) James Bradley FRS was an English astronomer and served as Astronomer Royal from 1742, succeeding Edmond Halley. He is best known for two fundamental discoveries in astronomy, the aberration of ...more

44
James Carpenter is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
James Carpenter Died at 59 (1840-1899) James Carpenter was a British astronomer at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich. During the 1860s he performed the first observations of stellar spectra at the observatory, under the direction of ...more

45
James Hopwood Jeans is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
James Hopwood Jeans Died at 69 (1877-1946) Sir James Hopwood Jeans OM FRS MA DSc ScD LLD was an English physicist, astronomer and mathematician.

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James South is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
James South Died at 82 (1785-1867) Sir James South was a British astronomer. He helped found the Astronomical Society of London, and it was under his name as president of the society from 1831 to 1832 that a petition was ...more

47
Jeremiah Horrocks is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Jeremiah Horrocks Died at 23 (1618-1641) Jeremiah Horrocks, sometimes given as Jeremiah Horrox, was an English astronomer. He was the first person to demonstrate that the Moon moved around the Earth in an elliptical orbit; and he was ...more

48
Jocelyn Bell Burnell is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Jocelyn Bell Burnell age 74 Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, DBE, FRS, PRSE FRAS is a Northern Irish astrophysicist. As a postgraduate student, she discovered the first radio pulsars while studying and advised by her thesis ...more

49
Joe Silk is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
Joe Silk age 75 Joseph Ivor Silk FRS was the Savilian Chair of Astronomy at the University of Oxford from 1999 to September 2011. He was educated at Tottenham County School and went on to study Mathematics at ...more

50
John Carroll is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list Famous Astronomers from the United Kingdom
John Carroll Died at 75 (1899-1974) John Anthony Carroll was a British astronomer and physicist. In the 1920s he worked at the Solar Physics Observatory, Cambridge, UK with F.J.M. Stratton and Richard van der Riet Woolley.