We’ll also have poetry about the stars from Rab Wilson from Burns Birthplace Museum. Poems like Ayont the Sun and The Star o’ Hope are part of a new book produced in collaboration with Scotland’s Astronomer Royal, Prof. John C. Brown. Together they’ll look at the lives of Scottish astronomers like Mary Somerville and Williamina Fleming, and show images of misty nebulas and blazing supernovas.
We’ll look back to one of Prof. Brown’s predecessors – Scotland’s 2nd Astronomer Royal, Charles Piazzi Smyth, born 200 years ago. He pioneered mountaintop astronomy and carried out a comprehensive study of the Great Pyramid of Egypt, with detailed measurements and astronomical alignments.
And in Orkney Magnus Spence, who died 100 years ago, surveyed the alignments of Maeshowe and the standing stones. That makes him one of the pioneers of modern archaeoastronomy and , as we’ll hear, his botanical work included the compiling of Flora Orcadiensis.