as·​tron·​o·​mer ə-ˈsträ-nə-mər How to pronounce astronomer (audio)
: a person who is skilled in astronomy or who makes observations of celestial phenomena

Examples of astronomer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The origin of dust in elliptical galaxies, therefore, has perplexed astronomers until this point. Jack Knudson, Discover Magazine, 9 Feb. 2024 Solar eclipses occur because the moon’s orbital path intercepts what astronomers call the ecliptic—the apparent path the sun takes through our daytime sky. Jamie Carter, Forbes, 9 Feb. 2024 Introduction To calculate the Hubble constant, astronomers need to know how far away things are. Quanta Magazine, 19 Jan. 2024 While astronomers have examined neighboring galaxies for decades, the new views from Webb show their stars, gas and dust in the highest resolution ever captured in near- and mid-infrared images, according to a statement from the telescope team. Will Sullivan, Smithsonian Magazine, 30 Jan. 2024 Some astronomers say the phenomenon occurs when the moon is within 90% of perigee — its closest approach to Earth in orbit. Wire Service, The Mercury News, 25 Jan. 2024 As astronomers made more precise observations of the universe across the sweep of cosmic time, cracks began to appear in the standard model. Quanta Magazine, 19 Jan. 2024 The Crab Nebula is an example of a supernova that was observed exploding by some Chinese astronomers nearly on millennium ago. Joshua Rapp Learn, Discover Magazine, 10 Jan. 2024 It was first reported by German astronomer William Herschel, who said it was discovered by his sister, Caroline Herschel, in 1787. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, 8 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'astronomer.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, "one versed in astronomy or astrology," from astronomie astronomy + -er -er entry 2

Note: Alternatively, Oxford English Dictionary, third edition, and Middle English Dictionary see the English word as derived from Medieval and Late Latin astronomus "astronomer" (borrowed from Greek astronómos) plus the agent suffix -er.

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of astronomer was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near astronomer

Cite this Entry

“Astronomer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2024.

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