URBAIN JEAN JOSEPH LEVERRIER (1811-1877), French astronomer, was born at St Lb in Normandy on the II th of March 1811.
The place of teacher of that science at the Ecole Polytechnique falling vacant in 1837, it was offered to and accepted by Leverrier, who, "docile to circumstance," instantly abandoned chemistry, and directed the whole of his powers to celestial mechanics.
Faye in November 1843, the other by Francesco de Vico a year later, were minutely investigated by Leverrier, with the result of disproving the supposed identity of the first with Lexell's lost comet of 1770, and of the other with Tycho's of 1585.
1910) at Berlin, within one degree of the spot Leverrier had indicated (see Neptune).
Academies vied with each other in enrolling Leverrier among their members; the Royal Society awarded him the Copley medal; the king of Denmark sent him the order of the Dannebrog; he was named officer in the Legion of Honour, and preceptor to the comte de Paris; a chair of astronomy was created for his benefit at the Faculty of Sciences; he was appointed adjunct astronomer to the Bureau of Longitudes.
Leverrier placed it on a totally new footing, freed it from the control of the Bureau of Longitudes, and raised it to its due rank among the observatories of Europe.
The Annales de l'Observatoire de Paris, the publication of which was set on foot by Leverrier, contain, in vols.
On the 27th of June 1878 he succeeded Urbain Leverrier as director of the National Observatory of Paris, and was raised to the rank of rear-admiral.