Navigation and Astronomy Teachers in Scotland Outside the Universities

By David Gavine, published February 1990


In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century, Scottish day-schools, mercantile establishments and universities taught astronomy.  Almost every coastal town would have had someone to teach coastal navigation to seafarers; other college courses covered up to finding longitude by lunar distances. Old exercise books illustrate the astronomical problems set for students and the instruments studied.  Some two hundred private teachers or schools have been identified in the four major Scottish cities alone.  There was a gradual decline in the numbers of private teachers of navigation following 1850-55 Acts.

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Filed under: Eighteenth Century | Nineteenth Century
Subjects include: Science & Exploration

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