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Royal Observatory Greenwich Drawings and Paintings : Illustrated letter from Richarda Airy to her husband, George Biddell Airy

Royal Observatory Greenwich Drawings and Paintings

<p style='text-align: justify;'>In this letter, written while her husband was away from the Royal Observatory, Richarda Airy discusses the 1851 eclipse and J. Nasmyth and C. Piazzi Smyth’s work on solar prominences, carried out at the Observatory in his absence. She describes her own observations, comparing the solar prominences (or ‘red flames’) to those she had witnessed during the eclipse of 1842. She ends the letter with a series of illustrations showing the prominences in various stages of development.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>The letter demonstrates Richarda’s keen interest in and understanding of her husband’s work. Her affectionate tone suggests that theirs was a close and loving relationship.</p>

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