(1800–67), 3rd earl of Rosse, astronomer and politician. Born in York, he was brought up at the ancestral home in Birr, Co. Offaly. After Trinity College, Dublin, and Oxford (where he excelled in mathematics) he entered Parliament as member for King's County (Offaly) (1821–34); from 1831 he was lord lieutenant of King's County, and in 1841 entered the House of Lords. His intellectual passion was astronomy, particularly the design of large telescopes in which regard he expanded on the work of William Herschel. In 1842 he constructed at Birr the famous 72-inch telescope (‘Leviathan’) with which he made many important observations, principally of nebulae.
From The Oxford Companion to Irish History in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: European History.