BornLondon, England, 2 August 1890
DiedHull, England, 4 September 1978
A professional astronomer, Herbert Dingle retrained himself as a historian at the University of London during the early evolution of the history of science as a profession. Spectroscopy, astrophysics, relativity, and cosmology were his main interests as an astronomer. He served a number of years as a Royal Astronomical Society [RAS] council member, secretary, and finally as RAS president from 1951 to 1953. His presidential address in 1953 was a satirical attack on the notion of a “perfect cosmological principle” (the underlying idea of the steady-state cosmological model of Hermann Bondi, Thomas Gold, and Fred Hoylethat the Universe should look the same to observers at all times as well as in all places). In 1956, Dingle triggered a substantial debate with William McCrea, soon joined by others, on the Twin or Clock paradox in Albert Einstein’s discussion of special relativity. Dingle never accepted the reality...