Ernst Wilhelm Leberecht Tempel (December 4, 1821 - March 16, 1889)

Born December 4, 1821 in Niedercunnersdorf, Saxony, Germany in poor conditions, he left his hometown in 1837, became trained as a lithographer in Meissen and worked in this profession in Copenhagen, Christiania (now Oslo) and Venice, where he lived 1850-60. In March 1860 he went to Marseille to work at the Observatory. In January 1871 he had to leave France and went to Milan, where he worked with Schiaparelli at Brera Observatory. In 1874, he was employed at Arcetri Observatory. In 1886 he caught several health problems and died on March 16, 1889 in Arcetri.

Tempel discovered the Merope Nebula (NGC 1435) in the Pleiades on October 19, 1859. Later he discovered many more nebulous objects: A total of 156 NGC entries goes back to him, of which at least 123 belong to real deepsky objects. He is also quoted for 13 original comet discoveries and 5 independent co-discoveries, as well as 8 first rediscoveries of periodic comets; his original discoveries include 4 short-periodic comets (9P/Tempel 1, 10P/Tempel 2, 11D/Tempel-Swift and the Leonid comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle).


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