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Antoniadi, Eugène Michael

Born Istanbul, (Turkey), 1 March 1870

Died Paris, France, 10 February 1944

Eugène Antoniadi was one of the leading visual observers of the planets in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Born of Greek parents, Antoniadi became interested in astronomy during his boyhood. His talent for beautiful draftsmanship became evident at an early age; it appears he received at least some formal training in architecture. When he was only 17, Antoniadi began making drawings of sunspots and the planets with a 3‐in. refractor at Constantinople and on the island of Prinkipio in the Sea of Marmara. He began submitting his work to the Société Astronomique de France, which had been founded in 1887 by Camille Flammarion. At this time, conditions in the Ottoman Empire were worsening under Sultan Abdülhamid II - the Red Sultan - and Antoniadi was eager to escape his disordered homeland. He accepted an invitation to become assistant observer at Flammarion's private observatory,