Anders Celsius

1701 (Uppsala, Sweden) – 1744 (Uppsala)

Although Celsius is best known for the temperature scale bearing his name, he was primarily an astronomer. Having visited the main centres of astronomy in Europe, meeting Cassini among others, he was instrumental in the expedition led by Maupertuis going to Swedish (now Finnish) Lapland rather than to Norway; Clairaut was a companion on this difficult journey to establish the Earth’s true shape, which led to Cassini’s obstinate defiance of their findings. Celsius gave short shrift to Swedenborg’s ideas about magnetic declination. Linnaeus, a correspondent, recommended the flipping of the temperature scale shortly after Celsius’ death.

Anders Celsius knew…