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Johannes Kepler, German astronomer Featured Caricatures Print

Johannes Kepler, German astronomer

Johannes Kepler (1571-1630), German astronomer, holding a divider used to plot distances. Kepler devised three fundamental laws of planetary motion. These laws were based on detailed observations of the planets made by himself and the Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe. Kepler's first law states that the planets orbit the Sun in elliptical paths, with the Sun at one focus of the ellipse. The second law states that the closer a planet comes to the Sun, the faster it moves. Kepler's third law states that the ratio of the cube of a planet's mean distance from the Sun to the square of its orbital period is a constant. Newton used these ideas to formulate his theory of gravity

© GARY BROWN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

1874 Monkey Darwin cartoon by Faustin Featured Caricatures Print

1874 Monkey Darwin cartoon by Faustin

"Prof. Darwin" coloured lithograph by Faustin Betbeder, with original Shakespeare quotes in text below. Front page of the "Figaro" paper N. 475, London Wednesday February 18th 1874. It appeared there as an advert for the sister paper, the more expensive London Sketch-Book of the same month. The colour lithograph sample was clipped and stuck on for that purpose. Charles Darwin owned a copy of this version in his own collection (Darwin Archive 140.4). He also kept the associated text clipping which notes "with rare humility (Darwin) owns that his ancestors were apes. It appears that one person believed in the Darwinian theory, which we hold to be evidence that man is descended from a certain long eared quadruped" (donkey). Charles Darwin published The Descent of Man in 1871. This caricature of Charles Darwin as an ape also appeared in the London Sketch Book in 1874 as a souvenir print

© This image is Paul D. Stewart 2009. Do not reproduce without permission of the photographer at Stewartpauld@aol.com.

Charles Babbage, caricature Featured Caricatures Print

Charles Babbage, caricature

Charles Babbage (1791-1871). Caricature of the English mathematician Charles Babbage. Babbage is best known for his pioneering work on programmable computers. Believing that a machine could calculate and produce numerical tables more quickly and reliably than the human computers of the time, Babbage designed the Difference Engine to compute values of polynomial functions. After this, Babbage drew plans for an Analytical Engine which could be programmed using punch cards. Neither engine was built to completion until 1991, when London's Science Museum build a Difference Engine from Babbage's plans. Despite this, Babbage was awarded the Royal Astronomical Society's Gold Medal for his Difference Engine, which would have been able to generate mathematical

© GARY BROWN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY