25 Mar, Saturday, 16:00–17:00 (English)
Galileo, Newton and the Quest for Longitude
Conservator, Hong Kong Maritime Museum
voyages, the preservation of ships, and the lives of men…” The Longitude Act, 1714
In 1714 the British government offered a prize of £20,000 to one of the world’s greatest unsolved problems – how to accurately determine a ship’s longitude. Crucially important for navigating east or west, an accurate way to calculate longitude whilst at sea was still unknown in the eighteenth century. In this talk, HKMM’s conservator, Paul Harrison, will explore the history of longitude and the solutions posed over four decades by John Harrison, a self-educated English carpenter and clock-maker to the centuries-old problem.