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Humans have gazed at the night sky for thousands of years, and found it pretty interesting. They learned that you could navigate using the celestial map and, over time, also learned that certain events could be predicted. These learned people were quite prized by their brethren, and their endeavors helped advance our understanding of the world.
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Cross-listed in Clergy

David Fabricius

bornactivedied
1564, Mar 91584-16171617, May 7
a German pastor who made two major discoveries in the early days of telescopic astronomy, jointly with his eldest son, Johannes Fabricius. Fabricius discovered the first known periodic variable star (as opposed to cataclysmic variables, such as novas and supernovas), Mira, in August 1596.
Timeline (1)Links (1)


Johannes Fabricius

aka: Johann Goldsmid
bornactivedied
1587, Jan 81611-16161616, Mar 19
a Frisian/German astronomer and a discoverer of sunspots (in 1610), independently of Galileo Galilei. Copies of a map he made of Frisia in 1589 are still extant.
Timeline (1)Links (1)


Fearon Fallows

bornactivedied
1788, Jul 41816-18301831, Jul 25
an English astronomer to King George IV. Between 1821 and 1829 he worked to site, plan and develop the observatory, which was the first astronomical observatory in the southern hemisphere, and catalogued over 300 stars from his observatory in South Africa.
Links (1)


Herve Faye

aka: Hervé
bornactivedied
1814, Oct 11834-18971902, Jul 4
a French astronomer, who studied comets, discovering several. His work covered the entire field of astronomical investigation. It comprised the determination of comet periods, the measurement of parallaxes, and the study of stellar and planetary movements. He also studied the physics of the sun.
Links (1)


Cross-listed in ArtistsWritersInventors

James Ferguson [3]

bornactivedied
1710, Apr 251720-17731776, Nov 17
a Scottish astronomer, instrument and globe maker. It is, as the inventor and improver of astronomical and other scientific apparatus, that he claims a place among the most remarkable men of science of his country. In 1734 he went to Edinburgh, where he began to make portraits in miniature, by which means, while engaged in his scientific studies, he support...
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James Ferguson [4]

bornactivedied
1797, Aug 311847-18601867, Sep 26
an American astronomer and engineer (he helped build the Erie canal) born in Scotland who made the first discovery of an asteroid from North America (31 Euphrosyne). Starting in 1847, he worked at the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington, DC. The asteroid 1745 Ferguson, discovered from the same observatory, was later named in his honour.
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John Flamsteed

bornactivedied
1646, Aug 191662-17191719, Dec 31
an English astronomer and the first Astronomer Royal. Flamsteed accurately calculated the solar eclipses of 1666 and 1668. He catalogued over 3000 stars.
Timeline (4)Links (1)


Honore Flaugergues

aka: Honoré
bornactivedied
1755, May 161809-18131830, Nov 20/1835, Nov 26
a French astronomer. He discovered the "Great Comet of 1811" (C/1811 F1), and independently co-discovered the "Great Comet of 1807" (C/1807 R1). In attempting to measure the rotation period of Mars, he noted inconsistencies in timing of yellow-colored features and concluded he was seeing atmospheric features rather than surface features. Therefore, some cred...
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Joseph von Fraunhofer

bornactivedied
1787, Mar 61801-18261826, Jun 7
a German optician, known for discovering the dark absorption lines known as Fraunhofer lines in the Sun's spectrum, and for making excellent optical glass and achromatic telescope objectives.
Links (1)


Cross-listed in Writers

Jean Frederic Frenet

aka: Jean Frédéric
borndied
1816, Feb 71900, Jun 12
a French mathematician, astronomer, and meteorologist. He was born and died in Périgueux, France. He is best known for being an (independent) co-discoverer of the Frenet–Serret formulas. He also was director of an astronomical observatory at Lyon. He wrote six out of the nine formulas, which at that time were not expressed in vector notation, nor using li...
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Cross-listed in ClergyWriters

David Friesenhausen

borndied
17561828, Mar 23
a German-Hungarian astronomer, maskil, mathematician, and rabbi. Friesenhausen was one of the first proponents of Torah im Derech Eretz, a philosophy of Orthodox Judaism that formalizes a relationship between traditionally observant Judaism and the modern world. He proposed a dual curriculum of Jewish and secular studies for all rabbinic candidates, a radica...
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