William Herbert Steavenson

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William Herbert Steavenson (26 April 1894 – 23 September 1975) was a British amateur astronomer.

He lost the vision in his right eye in a childhood accident. In September 1911, while still a schoolboy at Cheltenham College, he independently discovered the comet C/1911 S2, but unfortunately for him he did not check his photograph quickly enough and credit went to Ferdinand Quénisset. Nevertheless, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society in January 1912 whilst still at school. He is believed to have been the youngest Fellow.

He chose medicine as his profession and became a surgeon, but pursued astronomy his entire life and was a skilled observer. He concentrated on variable stars, planets and their satellites, and comets, and also observed the remnants of old novae like Nova Persei 1901.

From 1957–1959 he served as president of the Royal Astronomical Society, one of the few amateur astronomers to do so. He was also professor of astronomy at Gresham College.

He worked for 30 years as astronomy correspondent for The Times and won the Jackson-Gwilt Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1928.

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