Huggins, Margaret Lindsay

  • B. J. BeckerEmail author
Living reference work entry


Accounts of the life and work of English amateur astronomer William Huggins (1824–1910) always mention that he was assisted in his research by his wife, the former Margaret Lindsay Murray (1848–1915). Most descriptions of the nature and value of her contributions have been based on information gleaned from the Hugginses’ published scientific papers, but their observatory notebooks and correspondence show that Margaret was more than an able assistant, amanuensis, and illustrator. Working with her husband as a complementary collaborative partner, she not only strengthened but also shaped the research agenda of the Tulse Hill Observatory.


Margaret Lindsay Huggins née Murray was born in Dublin on 14 August 1848. Little is known about her life before she wed English amateur astronomer William Huggins (1824–1910) of Tulse Hill, London, in 1875. From that time until William’s death in 1910, the couple worked as complementary collaborative partners on pioneering...


William Huggins Norman Lockyer Astronomy Astrophysics Astrophotography Collaboration Controversy Nebulae Photography Royal Society Spectroscopy 
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  1. Becker, B.J. 1996. Margaret and William Huggins at work in the Tulse Hill Observatory. In Creative couples in science: Multidisciplinary perspectives, ed. P. Abir-Am et al., 98–111. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press.Google Scholar
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  7. ———. 1909. The scientific papers of Sir William Huggins. London: William Wesley and Son.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.History DepartmentUniversity of California, IrvineIrvineUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Emily Morris
    • 1
  1. 1.St. Thomas More College, University of SaskatchewanSaskatoonCanada