Reference numberMS/279
TitleCatalogue of nebulae observed by William Herschel, compiled by Caroline Lucretia Herschel
CreatorHerschel, Caroline Lucretia (1750–1848), astronomer
DescriptionTables of nebulae organised in zones by degrees of North Polar distance. The nebulae are numbered and classified, their observation by William Herschel is dated, and locations are provided in relation to neighbouring stars, including right ascensions and polar distance.

Headed: 'A Catalogue of the Nebula which have been observed by Wm. Herschel in a Series of Sweeps; brought into Zones of N.P. Distance and order of R.A. for the year 1800, by applying to the determining stars the variations given in Wollaston's of Bode's Catalogues.' Below this, a later inscription by Sir John Frederick William Herschel: 'By Carolina Lucretia Herschel (JFWH)'. The volume is prefaced by a key to the information contained in the tables with comments on how the observations were originally compiled.

The data has been checked and annotated in pencil throughout by John Frederick William Herschel, each page corrected where necessary and initialled. This document is referred to in Sir John Herschel's explanation of Herschel family manuscripts on nebulae. See pp.6-7 of 'Catalogue of nebulae and clusters of stars', by John Frederick William Herschel, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, v.154 (1864) pp.1-137. 'In presenting to the Royal Society this Catalogue, it will be accompanied by the following series of records and documents...6th. A catalogue in zones of P.D. of all the said nebulae and clusters, arranged in each zone in order of R.A., and reduced to the year 1800 by Miss C.L. Herschel, exhibiting the reduced result of each separate observation of each nebula; together with the determining star or stars in each case, and the differences in R.A. and P.D from each star, with references to the current number of the sweep in which the observation is contained.'

The volume contains a loosely inserted circular letter, Charles Richard Weld, Royal Society, Somerset House, to Sir John Frederick William Herschel, Collingwood, Hawkhurst, Kent, 6 July 1847, requesting his attendance at a meeting of the Society's Committee on Mathematics.The letter is annotated verso with a table, '30 years Precession in RA'.
Extent128p. [pp.106-126 blank] and 2p.
Physical descriptionOn paper. Half bound in brown leather, brown marbled paper boards. The spine has been inscribed in ink: 'Caroline Herschel''.
Digital imagesView item on Science in the Making
Access statusOpen
Related materialDOI: 10.1098/rspl.1800.0060
Related records in the catalogueMS/339
Fellows associated with this archive
NA8060Herschel; Sir; William (1738 - 1822); astronomer1738 - 1822
NA8238Herschel; Sir; John Frederick William (1792 - 1871); astronomer1792 - 1871
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