The Second Reign (1873–1877)

  • James Lequeux
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 397)


The death of Delaunay plunged the Minister of Public Instruction into confusion. Who should replace him? None of the astronomers at the Observatory were eager to take on the responsibility. Finally, it was the president of the Republic, Adolphe Thiers, who decided the matter. Thiers had maintained contact with Le Verrier, and decided to bring him back. The latter was therefore nominated director on 13 February 1873, 6 months after the drowning of Delaunay. His family didn’t seem to be in a hurry to move back to the Observatory, fearing, no doubt, a cold reception there. Though several astronomers, including Wolf, had hoped for his return, Le Verrier never forgave them for having signed the infamous manifesto of 1870 which ended in his dismissal, and in the end Wolf and Le Verrier would no longer be friends.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • James Lequeux
    • 1
  1. 1.Paris ObservatoryParisFrance

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