Biography of Paul Neale Astronomer 1613-1686

In 1613 Paul Neale Astronomer was born to Richard Neale Archbishop (age 50).

On 31 Oct 1640 [his father] Richard Neale Archbishop (age 78) died.

Evelyn's Diary. 08 May 1656. I went to visit Dr. Wilkins (age 42), at Whitehall [Map], when I first met with Sir P. Neal (age 43), famous for his optic glasses. Greatorix, the mathematical instrument maker, showed me his excellent invention to quench fire.

On 28 Nov 1660 Paul Neale Astronomer (age 47) was elected Fellow of the Royal Society; one of the twelve founder members.

Pepy's Diary. 02 Mar 1661. Early with Mr. Moore about Sir Paul Neales' (age 48) business with my uncle and other things all the morning. Dined with him at Mr. Crew's (age 63), and after dinner I went to the Theatre [Map], where I found so few people (which is strange, and the reason I did not know) that I went out again, and so to Salsbury Court, where the house as full as could be; and it seems it was a new play, "The Queen's Maske", wherein there are some good humours: among others, a good jeer to the old story of the Siege of Troy, making it to be a common country tale. But above all it was strange to see so little a boy as that was to act Cupid, which is one of the greatest parts in it. Then home and to bed.

Pepy's Diary. 10 Jan 1662. To White Hall, and there spoke with Sir Paul Neale (age 49) about a mathematical request of my Lord's to him, which I did deliver to him, and he promised to employ somebody to answer it, something about observation of the moon and stars, but what I did not mind. Here I met with Mr. Moore, who tells me that an injuncon is granted in Chancery against T. Trice, at which I was very glad, being before in some trouble for it.

Pepy's Diary. 15 Feb 1665. Thence with Creed to Gresham College, where I had been by Mr. Povy (age 51) the last week proposed to be admitted a member1 and was this day admitted, by signing a book and being taken by the hand by the President, my Lord Brunkard (age 45), and some words of admittance said to me. But it is a most acceptable thing to hear their discourse, and see their experiments; which were this day upon the nature of fire, and how it goes out in a place where the ayre is not free, and sooner out where the ayre is exhausted, which they showed by an engine on purpose. After this being done, they to the Crowne Taverne, behind the 'Change [Map], and there my Lord and most of the company to a club supper; Sir P. Neale (age 52), Sir R. Murrey, Dr. Clerke, Dr. Whistler, Dr. Goddard, and others of most eminent worth. Above all, Mr. Boyle (age 38) to-day was at the meeting, and above him Mr. Hooke (age 29), who is the most, and promises the least, of any man in the world that ever I saw. Here excellent discourse till ten at night, and then home, and to Sir W. Batten's (age 64), where I hear that Sir Thos. Harvy intends to put Mr. Turner out of his house and come in himself, which will be very hard to them, and though I love him not, yet for his family's sake I pity him. So home and to bed.

Note 1. According to the minutes of the Royal Society for February 15th, 1664-65, "Mr. Pepys was unanimously elected and admitted". Notes of the experiments shown by Hooke and Boyle are given in Birch's "History of the Royal Society", vol. ii., p. 15.

Pepy's Diary. 16 Dec 1666. So we parted, and I with Lord Bruncker (age 46) to Sir P. Neale's (age 53) chamber, and there sat and talked awhile, Sir Edward Walker being there, and telling us how he hath lost many fine rowles of antiquity in heraldry by the late fire, but hath saved the most of his papers. Here was also Dr. Wallis (age 50), the famous scholar and mathematician; but he promises little.

Pepy's Diary. 15 Apr 1668. After playing a little upon my new little flageolet, that is so soft that pleases me mightily, betimes to my office, where most of the morning. Then by coach, 1s., and meeting Lord Brouncker (age 48), 'light at the Exchange [Map], and thence by water to White Hall, 1s., and there to the Chapel, expecting wind musick and to the Harp-and-Ball, and drank all alone, 2d. Back, and to the fiddling concert, and heard a practice mighty good of Grebus, and thence to Westminster Hall [Map], where all cry out that the House will be severe with Pen; but do hope well concerning the buyers, that we shall have no difficulty, which God grant! Here met Creed, and, about noon, he and I, and Sir P. Neale (age 55) to the Quaker's, and there dined with a silly Executor of Bishop Juxon's, and cozen Roger Pepys (age 50). Business of money goes on slowly in the House.

In Feb 1686 Paul Neale Astronomer (age 73) died.