The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers

2007 Edition
| Editors: Thomas Hockey, Virginia Trimble, Thomas R. Williams, Katherine Bracher, Richard A. Jarrell, Jordan D. MarchéII, F. Jamil Ragep, JoAnn Palmeri, Marvin Bolt

Maury, Antonia Caetana de Paiva Pereira

Reference work entry

BornCold Springs, New York, USA, 21 March 1866

DiedHastings‐on‐Hudson, New York, USA, 8 January 1952

American spectroscopist Antonia Maury discovered a way of recognizing supergiant stars from their spectra, even when their distances could not be measured. She was the granddaughter of John William Draper , the first person to photograph the Moon, the niece of Henry Draper , another keen amateur astronomer, and the daughter of Mytton and Virginia (née Draper) Maury. Her father, an Episcopalian priest, edited volumes in natural history; a sister became a paleontologist and a cousin an oceanographer. Maury was taught largely by her father and uncle, going on to Vassar College, New York, where she was one of the last students of Maria Mitchell , and received a BA in 1887.

In 1888, Maury was employed by Edward Pickeringat Harvard College Observatory as part of a program to determine the spectral types of stars. The program was funded by a memorial contribution from Henry Draper's...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Selected References

  1. Gingerich, Owen (1974). “Maury, Antonia Caetana de Paiva Pereira.” In Dictionary of Scientific Biography, edited by Charles Coulston Gillispie, Vol. 9, pp. 194–195. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons.Google Scholar
  2. Hoffleit, Dorrit (1952). “Antonia C. Maury.” Sky & Telescope 11, no. 5: 106.Google Scholar
  3. ——— (2002). “Pioneering Women in the Spectral Classification of Stars.” Physics in Perspective 4: 370–398.ADSGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

There are no affiliations available