Franz Xaver, Baron von Zach - Encyclopedia




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FRANZ XAVER ZACH, BARON VON (1754-1832), German astronomer, was born at Pesth on the 4th of June 17 54. He served for some time in the Austrian army, and afterwards lived in London from 1783 to 1786 as tutor in the house of the Saxon minister, Count Brihl. In 1786 he was appointed by Ernest II. of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha director of the new observatory on the Seeberg at Gotha, which was finished in 1791. From ,806 Zach accompanied the duke's widow on her travels in the south of Europe. He died in Paris on the 2nd of September 1832.

Zacli published Tables of the Sun (Gotha, 1792; new and improved edition, ibid., 1804), and numerous papers on geographical subjects, particularly on the geographical positions of many towns and places, which he determined on his travels with a sextant. His principal importance was, however, as editor of three scientific journals of great value: Allgemeine Geographische Ephemeriden (4 vols., Gotha, 1798-99), Monatliche Correspondenz zur Beforderung der Erdand Himmels-Kunde (28 vols., Gotha, 1800-13, from 1807 edited by B. von Lindenau), and Correspondance astronomique, geographique, hydrographique, et statistique (Genoa, 1818-26, 14 vols., and one number of the 15th suppressed at the instigation of the Jesuits).

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