Thursday, October 27, 2016

United Kingdom trip (part 7)-Greenwich


From the Tower of London we decided to go to Greenwich to visit the Royal Observatory. We took the train and reached the Greenwich station. The observatory was very near to the station. Located at the Southeast part of London, it was very quiet place unlike London. Greenwich means green village. It was very much green indeed.



 We reached the underground station, and came upstairs , and could see an old time ship. The ship could be a model, I don’t know. My w]son wanted to visit that, but our plan was different. We wanted to see the Royal Observatory only. At that time my son was desperately wanted to drink water. However, the bottle I was carrying was already empty. We searched for a shop, and we saw Greenwich Market. 


To out disappointment, there was not a single shop where we could get a bottle of ager. Then we walk through the bylines, alleys and reached the main rod road. We found a shop, and bought a bottle of water. Then we started walking towards the royal observatory. 


The Royal Observatory was situated on the top a hill in the Greenwich Park. Once there was castle, then it turned into Palace of Placentia during King Henry VIII.It was his one of the favorite places for hunting.  Then it converted into queen’s house, then royal navy hospital. Then in 1675 the Royal Observatory was built on the ruins during the time rein King Charles II, who was at the greatest patron of arts of astronomy.


I read the little history written there on various walls of the observatory. It was written that the  observatory was built with spare bricks from Tilbury fort, recycled lead, iron and timber from Tower of London under very tight budget. Sir Christopher Wren, famous architect also a professor of astronomy suggested using the ruin of Greenwich castle to make the Observatory.

The observatory
Prime Meridian


During that time the Europeans started voyage around the world, and they needed more accurate time during their voyage. At that time almost every town had their own meridian, which made difficult to calculate time. King Charles II who was the greatest patronage of Arts of Astronomy took initiative on the matter. 
Flamsteed house was first built. Over the years it was the home of the astronomers and their families. Before the prime  meridian, almost every town maintain their local time. There were no national or international conventions to set how time should be measured. James Bradley, third Astronomer royal, observed with accuracy sung telescope that first defied the line in 1750/.owing to the unequal length of solar days, astronomers measure the line using distant starts. Stars cross the meridian around every 23 hr. 56 minutes. 

However, as the communication grows, world needed an international standard time. The Greenwich meridian was chosen Prime meridian in 1884. 

What is Prime meridian?
Greenwich meridian is an imaginary line used to indicate 0° longitude that passes through Greenwich, London, and terminates at the North and South poles. An international conference held in Washington, D.C., in 1884 designated “the meridian passing through the centre of the transit instrument at the Observatory of Greenwich as the initial meridian for longitude.”
This north-south line at Greenwich is used as the reference for all other meridians of longitude, which are numbered east or west of it. The Greenwich meridian also serves as the basis for the world’s standard time zone system. The mean solar time at Greenwich is now called Universal Time and was formerly called Greenwich Mean Time.— Source Encyclopedia Britannica



6 comments:

  1. Such a lovely place and beautiful photos! xx

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  2. That is fascinating history. I always wondered why that was chosen for the prime meridian and also find it amazing that some other country didn't challenge it.

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  3. Gorgeous photos! Thank you for sharing all this history! Thank you for coming by my blog! Hugs!

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  4. These posts of England have been fascinating, thanks so much for giving context and history with them. Love it, Sandi

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  5. Oh yes this owl cup is really cute =)

    I've never been to UK but I want :D This loosk really great =)

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  6. Neat write-up.. It was like a visual trip to my eyes and mind!! Hats off :)

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