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Ships, Clocks & Stars: The Quest for Longitude


To the National Maritime Museum to see this excellent exhibition, which takes a highly complex historical and scientific story and brings it to life. Many people have read Dava Sobel’s Longitude, published in 1995, which told the story of the ‘lone genius’ John Harrison inventing a chronometer to enable longitude to be established accurately at sea. Of course, the story is significantly more complex than Sobel presents it. Harrison did not work alone, and the project was a great deal more collaborative than she implies. The exhibition also presents the story in its wider context of Britain’s growing trade and naval power and I really recommend a visit. It runs until 4 January.


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