From Françoise LAUNAY
® . . . . . . . . .Date: Tue, 09 Mar 2004 21:51:41 +0100
Many, many thanks for your long message and the beautiful images !
am especially happy to learn that the stone small shrine that Janssen
photographed in 1874 at
have been in touch with a very kind lady at Nuits St Georges, and I have now got the pamphlet with the photo of
Janssen's team. I also know the address of Tisserand's
grandson and I shall write to him to know whether he has other documents. I am
a bit surprised that the photo is dated 8 May, the day before the transit that
is, and to see people who were observing in
I am also very happy that we have both identify Makoto Shimizu without any doubt. Many thanks for all the information about him !
> Yes, Janssen wrote he was an ancien élève, but it is known
> Chimizou (Shimidzu) was allowed to enter the École Central des Arts
> et Manufactures in 1873
(he went to
> must have been improbable for him to have graduated.
I shall get in touch with the Association des anciens élèves, to know whether they have documents dealing with him.
> Recently here it is widely known
> that an interesting photo was
> nicely preserved by what's-his-name
> Ishiguro family (Ishigouro in
> French). Please find two images attached
>here. Full and part. It is said it shows
>the site of French expedition working at the
> Suwa-yama, Kobé. Do you identify the
>telescopes as well as persons
> (including a sailor)? (cf the "part")
retired teacher who lives in
> The content between a meeting of Janssen and the
> Foreign Minister Terashima is well known recorded in Japanese.
> Ministry of Education put forward an interpreter called Koga to the
> French team, and Foreign Ministry thought one person was enough. But
> Ministry of Education thought one more interpreter was needed, and
> so the Foreign Ministry offered another called Tsuruda (maybe
> Tourouda in French. In
> to write ru in a French sense, we write ryu).
Very interesting ! I understand now why Janssen wrote both Japanese names in his notebook...
> As you know, Janssen at
> to dispatch a subgroup
> dismal weather, and Tsuruda followed back to
> documents were not yet found
hope you'll find them some day...
> there are preserved several useful
> documents written by Tsuruda, and they are sometimes detailed (about
> a detailed schedule of
their trip from
> and the places at
> three Japanese naval officers and two policemen
it must be easy to know whether Janssen, Tisserand
> Finally I should tell you that I shall visit
> April. It's partly because the Annual Convention of the Oriental
> Astronomical Association (OAA) will be held on 24 and 25 April
> there, but partly because I want to see the Monumental Pyramid as
> well as other sites related with the Venus Transit in 1874. I shall
> make a further survey about the shrine, and take more images by
> myself and will readily communicate the results to you. I hope I
> will take also good pictures of the surface of the Pyramid where the
EXECUTE PAR CE GOUVERNEMENT AMI DE LA
ETANT PRESIDENT DE LA COMMISION
>should have been engraved. The names others here are
> known to be Janssen, Tisserand, Picard, Arents, D'Almeida, Vacher.
> There have been found a base near it several years ago, but as far
> as I compared the reported size, its size was not identical with
> anyone Tisserand described, and so I will make a further survey.
Of course I am especially interested in d'Almeida, a Bresilain who was operating the revolver, and I am looking for a portrait of him in order to identify him on the team photo. Maybe Tisserand's family will help.
> Recently William Sheehan, an American S&T writer, informed me that he
> and John Westfall already published a book on a history of the Venus
> Transit. He was once very interested in the Janssen Revolver, and
> so I suppose they wrote also something about Janssen.
Yes I am in touch with Bill who will
> Janssen sometimes alluded to
> be very pleased if you could find a complete list of evaluations
I shall try and find it for you.
With very best wishes and thanks again
Françoise LAUNAY (
Observatoire de Paris-Meudon
5 Place Jules JANSSEN