Charles Piazzi Smyth

(1819-1900)
Charles Piazzi Smyth Ibrahaim, the Cook 1865

Biography

Charles Piazzi Smyth was Astronomer Royal for Scotland, working in the Observatory on Calton Hill in Edinburgh, where he found the city's smoke and cloud did not allow him to view the stars properly. In 1856, he led an expedition to Teneriffe to discover how far observation improved without the lower third of the atmosphere. Photography was to him a tool for accurate scientific record of natural phenomena. Piazzi Smyth, who was fascinated by the mathematical and mystical riddles of the Great Pyramid in Egypt, was himself buried in a pyramid, apparently with a camera beside him.