Tag Archives: english astronomer

This Day in the Yesteryear: WILLIAM HERSCHEL DISCOVERS URANUS (1781)


William Herschel Discovers Uranus (1781)

For many years, astronomers mistakenly believed that the planet Uranus, which is sometimes visible to the naked eye, was a star. Herschel, a German-born English astronomer, originally believed that it was a comet. It soon proved to be, indeed, a verifiable planet—the first to be discovered in modern times with the aid of a telescope. The planet was only named Uranus—for the Greek personification of heaven—after the original name of Herschel’s choosing proved unpopular. What was it? More… Discuss