300 years ago, amidst growing frustration from the naval community and pressure from the increasing importance of international trade, the British government passed the 1714 Longitude Act. It was an attempt to solve one of the most pressing problems of the age: how to determine a ship’s longitude (east-west position) at sea. With life-changing rewards on offer, the challenge captured the imaginations and talents of astronomers, skilled craftsmen, politicians, seamen and satirists.
Published by HarperCollins, in association with the National Maritime Museum, Finding Longitude explores the history of the Longitude problem, the people involved and how its solution changed our understanding of the world forever.
- Foreword by the fifteenth Astronomer Royal, Martin Rees.
- Specially commissioned photographs of the National Maritime Museum’s collection.