the friend online
02 November 2007

Arthur Stanley Eddington - preview

Simon Risley looks at Eddington’s life

Arthur Stanley Eddington – Stanley, as he was known to his family – was born in Kendal on 28 December 1882, the son of the Quaker headmaster of Stramongate School
  • He soon showed promise of what was to come, having learnt the twenty-four times table before he could read, and showing an early fascination for the night sky – this latent interest being given a further focus by the loan of a three-inch telescope when he was ten

  • The death of his father in the 1884 typhoid epidemic left the family in straitened circumstances and his mother, Sarah Ann Stout, took the family to live with her mother-in-law in Weston-super-Mare
  • There the young Eddington made rapid progress in mathematics, despite the limitations of his prep school

  • Simon Risley

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    Roger Plenty, 30 November
    I've found it on the net. Here it is.

    "This house was the boyhood home of Arthur Stanley Eddington, one
    of the foremost scientists, not only of the twentieth century,
    but of the entire history of the human species. His achievements
    include, but are not limited to, the integration of modern astrophysics,
    major advances in the early history of relativistic cosmology,
    major additions to modern astronomical advancements, a
    superior exposition of the philosophy of physical science, and
    authorship of many books and articles making science most meaningful,
    not only to scientists, but to all rational and curious individuals.
    His achievements will radiate for the duration of
    the human species."

    Roger Plenty, 02 November
    A plaque was placed on Arthur Eddington's childhood home in Weston some years ago. No mention of his Quakerism, as far as I remember, but it listed his scientific achievements. Could a Friend in Weston provide a photo, or at least the text of this, to be published in The Friend?


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