Being Short Doesn't Stop You From Reaching The Stars!

By Eleni Karanicolas


Caroline Lucretia Herschel was born on 19th March 1750 in Hanover in Germany. Her parents were Ann Iss Moritzen and Issac Herschel. Caroline had 6 siblings including Sir William Herschel. Her Dad, Issac, wanted all of his children to be educated but her Mum, Ann, preferred that Caroline stay at home and learn house chores. Caroline became the housemaid for her family.

At the young age of 10 Caroline was diagnosed with Typhus which permanently stunted Caroline’s growth. Typhus is a bacterial disease that is spread by lice or fleas. Some of the most common symptoms are joint pain, back pain, very high fevers, severe headaches and bad cough. At this point of her life her parents decided she would never get married and live her life as an old house maid.


In 1772, at the age of 22, Caroline moved to England to become her brother, William’s house keeper. Her brother was a composer and had a hobby of studying stars. Astronomy became more serious for William and he quit his job of being a composer.  After that Caroline started writing down William’s observations. On her own she discovered a comet in 1786 and found seven more between 1787 and 1797.
In 1828 Caroline was awarded a gold medal from the Royal Astronomical Society for noting William’s observations. Sadly, a few years after in 1832 William’s life ended and he went to heaven.

Caroline's Discoveries And How They Affect Our Lives!

Caroline went down a successful path and located nebulae and stellar systems. Nebulae is a hazy cloud that produces stars and stellar system is a scientific words for constellation. Caroline’s discoveries help us know what causes stars to produce. Her other discovery helped lost people find a way back using the stars as a map.
Caroline’s fame was because she was the first female astronomer to discover a comet. On Caroline’s 96th birthday in 1846 she was presented a King of Prussia’s Gold Medal of Science. Caroline’s life ended on the 9th of February 1848, at an impressive age of 97!


  • Caroline Herschel. Retrieved from