Cambridge CB2 1RF, UK
After attending grammar schools at Bury St. Edmunds and Ipswich, Temple, Chevallier proceeded to Pembroke College, Cambridge.
After attending grammar schools at Bury St. Edmunds and Ipswich, Temple, Chevallier proceeded to Pembroke College, Cambridge, where he was successively Bell scholar (1814), second wrangler and second Smith’s prizeman (1817), and fellow of Pembroke College and Catharine Hall.
Chevallier was ordained in 1818, remaining in Cambridge until 1835 when he moved to Durham, where he held various offices in the cathedral and university. He was made a professor of mathematics (1835), professor of astronomy (1841), and reader in Hebrew (1841). His wide learning enabled him to publish translations from authors such as Clement of Rome, Polycarp, Ignatius, Justin Martyr, and Tertullian, besides many sermons and religious works, and his Halsean Lectures (1827) are said to have suggested to Whewell the idea of his Bridgewater Treatise. Chevallier wrote about thirty astronomical papers.
The observatory at Durham University was largely planned by him. He made use of its facilities, including the Fraunhofer equatorial telescope, in his work on the sun’s diameter, solar eclipses, the planets, and meteorological phenomena. Chevallier seems to have enjoyed calculating the elements of the orbits of objects within the solar system, and some of his most useful writings, although very brief, concern simple graphical and other approximative computing methods. He showed little research interest in physics, although he offered a paper “On an Analogy Between Heat and Electricity” to the British Association (1855). His Easy Lessons on Mechanics (written for the Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge) is perhaps a better guide to Chevallier’s merits than his more strictly scientific writings, for he was fervent in wishing to introduce science into education.
Chevallier founded a class at Durham for mining and civil engineering in 1838, and later a department of physics. In the year of his retirement (1871), he helped to found the College of Science at Newcastle (Armstrong College), which was long associated with the University of Durham. The college has since become part of the University of Newcastle.
Physical Characteristics: Chevallier is portrayed in the Great Hall of Durham Castle (University College, Durham) as a large, imposing man, with a heavy beard.
Chevallier had married, in 1825, Catherine, daughter of American Loyalist Charles Apthorpe Wheelwright. She died in 1858. He had three children: Catherine Temple, Alicia Temple and Temple (who died as a child).