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Script for 'The Night Sky in December', 1959-12

Reference Code: GBR/0180/RGO 45/353

Scope and Contents

Two copies of Porter's script for 'The Night Sky in December' on the stars of Christmas, Orion, Sirius, Castor, Pollux, Procyon, Taurus and Aldebaran; Betelgeuse and Bayer's star atlas and the atlases of Flamsteed and Bode; Camille Flammarion on the winter constellations, the size and brightness of the various stars and the centenary of spectroscopy in astronomy; the work of Father Secchi and William Huggins; Secchi's division of stellar spectral types into four groups, the development of this classification subsequently by Harvard astronomers, with each classification given a letter according to surface temperature, the range of such temperatures within these groups, and the groups of stars in Orion and the Pleiades; Betelgeuse and Rigel, the dimensions of Rigel, and type A stars (Sirius, Vega, Altair, Castor and Deneb) and metallic elements in their spectra; metallic elements increasing with spectral group; Procyon, the Sun and Capella G type stars; Aldebaran, Arcturus and Pollux, class K; class M, including some supergiants such as Betelgeuse; nuclear fusion being the source of the energy in stars, the age of stars being related to spectral group and the implications of these findings in theories of stellar evolution; and galactic spiral arms being the place where new stars are born. The second copy of the script is annotated.


  • Creation: 1959-12


Conditions Governing Access

From the Management Group:

Unless restrictions apply, the collection is open for consultation by researchers using the Manuscripts Reading Room at Cambridge University Library. For further details on conditions governing access please contact Information about opening hours and obtaining a Cambridge University Library reader's ticket is available from the Library's website (


10 page(s)

Language of Materials


Finding aid date

2007-04-13 12:44:24+00:00

Includes index.

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

Cambridge University Library
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Cambridge CB3 9DR United Kingdom