Turner, Herbert Hall (1861–1930)
English astronomer generally credited with coining the term "parsec"
and being partly responsible for naming the ninth planet. Having served
as chief assistant at the Royal
Greenwich Observatory for nine years, he spent most of his career as
Savilian professor of astronomy at Oxford. A leader in the worldwide effort
to produce an astrographic chart of the sky, he developed improved methods
for obtaining both positions and magnitudes from photographic plates, and
was adept at training unskilled workers to take part in this project. Most
of his later work was in seismology; he compiled and published worldwide
earthquake data starting in 1918, and discovered the existence of deep-focus
earthquakes in 1922. He was responsible for forwarding to the Lowell
Observatory discoverers of the ninth planet the suggestion of an 11-year-old
Oxford resident, Venetia Phair, that
the new-found world be christened Pluto.