Today in Religion – Jules Janssen

Jules Janssen

Jules Janssen flew in a hot air balloon in order to study a solar eclipse in 1870.

Jules Janssen did not let a childhood accident keep him from learning. Though lame, he started working in banking at the age of sixteen and studied mathematics. Eventually, he graduated from the University of Paris with a doctorate. Following his graduation, he taught as a physics professor and studied eclipses.

Despite his infirmity, Janssen traveled to the best places to observe eclipses. In 1870 during the Franco-German War, with Paris under siege, Janssen still found a way to accomplish his goal. He escaped in a hot air balloon. He planned to fly it to Algeria where he could see a total eclipse. Unfortunately, the clouded skies prevented him from observing that eclipse.

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