Georg Merz

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Georg Merz
portrait of Georg Merz
Born26 January 1793
Died12 January 1867
Known forMerz astronomical telescopes

Georg Merz (26 January 1793 – 12 January 1867) was a Bavarian optician and manufacturer of astronomical telescopes and other optical instruments.


Merz was born on 26 January 1793 in Bichl, in Bad Tölz-Wolfratshausen, now in Bavaria, Germany.[1] At the age of 15 he went to work in the glassworks recently set up by Joseph von Utzschneider [de] in the nearby deconsecrated monastery of Benediktbeuern. There he became the assistant of Joseph Fraunhofer.[2] From 1826, when Fraunhofer died, Merz was in charge of the optical division of the business. On the death of von Utzschneider in 1839 Merz, in partnership with Joseph Mahler, bought the firm.[3] After Mahler's death he ran the business in partnership with his sons Ludwig and Sigmund. When Ludwig died in 1858 the name was changed to G. & S. Merz.[3]

Georg Merz died in Munich on 12 January 1867.[1] In 1882 the firm passed to Jacob and Matthias Merz, Sigmund's cousins,[3] and in 1884 the Benediktbeuern works was closed. The company moved to Munich, and closed in 1903.[2]

Illustration of the 11 inch "Merz and Mahler" refracting telescope (from "Smith's Illustrated Astronomy" 1848), Cincinnati Observatory
Refraktor Merz 160/1790 at the baron Artur Krause's Observatory in Pardubice, 1912-1930



  1. ^ a b Carl Preyß (1994). Merz, Georg (in German). In: Neue Deutsche Biographie, Volume 17. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot. ISBN 3428001982. p. 199.
  2. ^ a b John Hearnshaw (2014). The Analysis of Starlight: Two Centuries of Astronomical Spectroscopy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9781107031746. p. 20.
  3. ^ a b c [s.n.] (2010). G. & S. Merz firm. Museo Galileo – Institute and Museum of the History of Science, Florence, Italy. Accessed March 2015.
  4. ^ "Cincinnati Observatory – about". Retrieved 15 February 2015.
  5. ^ a b Group, CfA Web Services (11 December 2023). "Harvard College Observatory: Great Refractor".
  6. ^ "Kleine koepel: 6-duims kijker – Werkgroep Leidse Sterrewacht". (in Dutch). Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  7. ^ The HUT Observatory
  8. ^ "The Royal Observatory Greenwich". Retrieved 20 December 2014.
  9. ^ Telescopio equatoriale di Merz: Georg Merz, Sigmund Merz - Monaco (Germania) - 1863 (in Italian). Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte: Museo degli Strumenti Astronomici.
  10. ^ Cupola Schiaparelli e Telescopio Merz Archived 22 March 2015 at the Wayback Machine (in Italian). Università degli Studi di Milano: Museo Astronomico e Orto Botanico di Brera. Accessed April 2015.
  11. ^ Andrea Bernagozzi, Antonella Testa, Pasquale Tucci (2004). Observing Mars with Schiaparelli's telescope. In: Proceedings of the Third European Workshop on Exo-Astrobiology, 18 – 20 November 2003, Madrid, Spain. Noordwijk, Netherlands: ESA Publications Division. ISBN 9290928565. ESA SP-545: 157 - 158. Accessed April 2015.
  12. ^ sciencephoto
  13. ^ Archived 8 April 2015 at the Wayback Machine Sydney Observatory
  14. ^ "WFS History". 24 September 2015. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2021.