Vatican astronomers name asteroid after Pope, author of Gregorian calendar

The Vatican Observatory named the asteroid after Pope Gregory XIII. It is reported by the Associated Press.

The celestial body is now called 560974 Ugoboncompagni, because in the world of Gregory the name was Hugo Boncompagni. At the same time, three more names were given to the asteroids in honor of the Jesuits associated with the Vatican Observatory. As a result, the number of asteroids named after representatives of this order exceeded 30.

Gregory, who lived from 1502-1585, along with a number of other astronomers and mathematicians, corrected the Julian calendar and introduced a new method for calculating leap years, resulting in the Gregorian calendar. According to the old calendar, for example, the Russian Orthodox Church continues to live .

It is from the pontificate of Gregory and the reform of the Gregorian calendar in 1582 that the Vatican Observatory itself traces its origins. It is located in the papal summer residence at Castel Gandolfo in the hills south of Rome , where a dozen priests and brethren now study the universe. They are led by the Jesuit brother Guy Consolmagno.

The right to name an asteroid in honor of a person appears with the discoverer after the asteroid was observed for the second time. You can read about why this cannot be done right away in  the material of Gazeta.Ru.

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