Info: Friends & Family of Astronomers

There are a lot of minor planets named after astronomers. There are perhaps as many named after the spouses, parents, children, and personal friends and acquaintances of astronomers, which this page lists. This makes a lot of sense; there is hardly a better anniversary present than an eternal point in the sky forever named after you. Well, other than perhaps a nice piece of jewelry. The latter doesn't require a telescope to show off, at least.

In a lot of cases, nothing is known about the referents of these minor planets other than that they are related to some astronomer. This is rather unfortunate, for someone who is interested in accessing the deeper meaning of minor planet names. An astrohistoriographer, if you like made-up words. In any case, due to the dearth of information of these people, I am often left with little choice other than to derive these symbols from the symbols of the astronomer with whom they are connected.

Wives of astronomers

Bunch of these. The symbols for minor planets named after wives of astronomers consist of the monogram that appears in that astronomer's minor planet symbol, with the lower circle-in-star element replaced with a Venusian cross, in its role as the female symbol.

Minor planet named after wife Astronomer husband Symbol head
207 Hedda Friedrich August Theodor Winnecke
225 Henrietta Pierre Jules César Janssen, or J. Janssen
229 Adelinda Edmund Weiss
237 Coelestina Theodor von Oppolzer vO
251 Sophia Hugo von Seeliger vS
253 Mathilde Moritz Loewy
352 Gisela M. F. Wolf MW
355 Gabriella Camille Flammarion F
476 Hedwig Elis Stromgren ES
510 Mabella David P. Todd D
674 Rachele E. Bianchi (?)
696 Leonora Arthur Snow
725 Amanda Richard Schorr RS
734 Benda Johann Palisa JP
751 Faïna G.N. Neujmin ГH
805 Hormuthia August Kopff
907 Rhoda Edward Emerson Barnard EB
933 Susi Kasimir Romuald Graff
954 Li K. Reinmuth KR
955 Alstede K. Reinmuth, again KR, extra Venusian cross
965 Angelica Johannes Franz Hartmann
966 Muschi Walter Baade WB
986 Amelia J. Comas i Sola CiS

Husbands of astronomers

Fewer of these, but not none. The symbols of these minor planets consist of the astronomer's monogram, with a Martian downward arrow below, representing the male symbol.

Non-binary spouses of astronomers

I don't know if there are any minor planet named after astronomer's spouses who do not conform the gender binary, or actually if there are any minor planets named after non-binary people at all. Nevertheless, symbols of minor planets named after such people would consist of the astronomer's monogram, with a crossed downward arrow, a combination of the male and female symbols.

Mothers of astronomers

The symbols of these minor planets consist of the astronomer's monogram, with a Junonian starburst below, referencing Juno's role as the mother goddess. I do not include mothers-in-law in this category.

Minor planet named after mother Astronomer offspring Symbol head
320 Katharina J. Palisa
412 Elisabetha M. F. Wolf
503 Evelyn Raymond Smith Dugan
789 Lena G. N. Neujmin
801 Helwerthia M. F. Wolf (again, same mom)
956 Elisa K. Reinmuth
1022 Olimpiada V. A. Albitskij
1055 Tynka Emil Buchar
1252 Celestia F. L. Whipple
1265 Schweikarda F. Kaiser
1285 Julietta Eugène Joseph Delporte
1413 Roucarie Louis Boyer
1843 Jarmilla Luboš Kohoutek
2130 Evdokiya Lyudmila Zhuravleva
2166 Handahl Daniel W. E. Green
2254 Requiem* N. S. Chernykh
2364 Seillier H. Debehogne
2525 O'Steen B. A. Skiff
2558 Viv N. G. Thomas
2567 Elba O. Pizarro and G. Pizarro
2764 Moeller N. G. Thomas (again)
2821 Slavka Z. Vavrova

Fathers of astronomers

The symbols of these minor planets consist of the astronomer's monogram, with a tiny Saturnian crook below, referencing Saturn's role as the father of the first Olympian gods. I do not include fathers-in-law in this category.

Children, other relations, and acquaintances of astronomers

This category of minor planet symbol generally has the astronomer's monogram as the top part, and a different letter or monogram representing the individual as the bottom part.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License