Diagram of the 1761 transit by James Ferguson

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Diagram of the 1761 transit by James Ferguson

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This is a detail from a large folding plate in James Ferguson's Astronomy explained upon Sir Isaac Newton?s Principles. First published in 1756, Ferguson subsequently added material on the 1761 transit. This is from the edition of 1811, edited by David Brewster.

The full engraving shows the geometry of the transit with the orbits of the Earth and Venus. This detail shows Venus at both ends of its path across the solar disc, at the two moments of internal contact with the limb of the sun.


Object contributed by Museum of the History of Science, University of Oxford

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