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Caroline Herschel
Caroline Herschel
Caroline Herschel was a singer, mathematician and astronomer!

Caroline Herschel was born in Germany in 1750. She was one of six children. Caroline's father was a musician. He wanted all of his children to study French, mathematics and music. Caroline's mother thought it was a waste of time for a girl to become educated. She made Caroline do most of the housework.

When she was ten, Caroline became sick from a disease called typhus. The disease stopped her from growing. She never grew taller than four foot three.

When she was twenty-two Caroline went to live with her brother in England. Caroline's brother, William, trained her in singing and in mathematics. William was very interested in astronomy and he trained Caroline in that science also. Caroline Herschel helped her brother with his work. She even learned how to grind the glass to make powerful telescopes. She began using the telescopes to make discoveries by herself.

Caroline Herschel discovered three new nebulae (the place where stars form). She was also the first woman to discover a comet. Caroline Herschel lived to be ninety-eight years old. Before she died, she had discovered eight comets.

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A Question

Why was Caroline Herschel such a small woman?

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The Answer
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The StarChild site is a service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC), Dr. Alan Smale (Director), within the Astrophysics Science Division (ASD) at NASA/GSFC.

StarChild Authors: The StarChild Team
StarChild Graphics & Music: Acknowledgments
StarChild Project Leader: Dr. Laura A. Whitlock
Responsible NASA Official: Phil Newman

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