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First Venus Transit.

  • Kerry Stargazer
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First Venus Transit. was created by Kerry Stargazer

Here’s one for the history buffs. The first observed Venus transit happened today in 1639 when a man called Jeremiah Horrocks observed the passage of Venus in front of the sun.

Horrocks focused the image of the Sun through a simple telescope onto a piece of card, where the image could be safely observed. From his location in Much Hoole near Preston, he calculated that the transit was to begin at approximately 3:00 pm on December 4.

The weather was cloudy, but he first observed the tiny black shadow of Venus crossing the Sun on the card at about 3:15 pm, and observed for half an hour until sunset. The 1639 transit was also observed by his friend and correspondent, William Crabtree, from his home in Salford.

Horrocks then tried to use this data to calculate the distance from the sun to the earth but had little success.
Chairman of Kerry Astronomy Club.
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16 years 1 month ago #36614

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Replied by dmcdona on topic Re: First Venus Transit.

Me auld man lives in Preston - I must tell him. Thanks for that - very informative!
16 years 1 month ago #36616

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Replied by albertw on topic Re: First Venus Transit.

www.vt-2004.org/Background/Infol2/EIS-F1.html has the vt-2004 infosheet on the 1639 observation.

Horrocks only observed the start of the transit as he went to church during the transit and missed the last contacts.
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
16 years 1 month ago #36668

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Replied by Frank Ryan on topic Re: First Venus Transit.

I remember seeing a bit about this on TV before...
It was the grey haired guy in England who does the programmes
'what the Victorians did for us'
or
'what the Romans did for us'

anyway.....
The programme he did about this was fantastic.

They re-inacted the time frame of the day he set up to observe the event.
It was hella fun to see the actor guy pretend to be him...
dashing thru fields and leapin' over stone walls to get to his
house to confirm his results......

kinda reminds me of when I was a kid on sundays
tryin to leg it outta mass to go watch a 'match' or whatever.....
My Astrophotography
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16 years 1 month ago #36677

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Replied by dave_lillis on topic Re: First Venus Transit.

Yip, I say that also.
Dave L. on facebook , See my images in flickr
Chairman. Shannonside Astronomy Club (Limerick)

Carrying around my 20" obsession is going to kill me,
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16 years 1 month ago #36680

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