Astronomers: Carmarthanshire


Evans, David, Rev. (1858-1910), amateur observer, possessed 18-inch telescope
at Cynwyl Elfed.

Daniell, Alfred, Dr. (1853-?), DSc, FRSE, amateur observer orignally
from Llanelli.

Davies, Tegfan, Rev. Dr. (1883-1968), amateur observer and popular lecturer, born Abergwili, later lived in Ammanford.

Evans, John Silas, Canon (1864-1953) amateur astronomer, popular
lecturer and author, originated from Pencarreg and returned to
Pencarreg in old age.

Harries, Thomas (1871-?), amateur observer, Llanelli.

Lower, William, Sir (c.1570-1615), Trefenty, early telescopic observer.

Mee, Arthur Butler Phillips (1860-1926), amateur astronomer and
author, spent his early years in Llanelli.

Prydderch, John  (or John Protheroe) (c.1582-c.1624), Nantyrhebog,
early telescopic observer.

Wilkins, Hugh Percival [Percy] (1896-1960), born in Carmarthen and lived his early life in Llanelli, Wales. He joined the BAA in 1918. Director BAA Lunar Section 1945-56. He rebuilt the Section, with a team of outstanding observers, among a Section strength by 1952 of more than 130. But instead of a move towards scientific analysis, he adopted the ‘new selenography’ of W.H. Pickering, Elger and Goodacre, which emphasised mapping in fine detail, searching for lunar change, and belief in the volcanic origin of most features. Wilkins was “perhaps the last of the classical Moon-mappers, producing successive charts of 100 inches, 200 inches, and, finally, 300 inches diametre”. He used an 18-inch Newtonian. However he was not sufficiently cautious in questioning detail, which led him to extravagant claims about changes and unusual phenomena. His reputation was damaged, and he resigned in 1956. See: Bill Leatherbarrow, ‘The Amateur’s Moon’, JBAA, 123, 3 (June 2013), pp. 148-9.

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