Gill Medal

The Gill Medal, which is struck in silver, is awarded by Council for services to astronomy with special consideration to services in southern Africa. It was established in 1955 April and was first awarded in 1956 to Harold Knox Shaw. The most recent recipient (2011) is Dr Darragh O’Donoghue.

The Gill Medal commemorates Sir David Gill, HM Astronomer at the Cape (1879–1907), renowned for his numerous researches, especially in positional and mathematical astronomy and geodesy, and for his part in consolidating astronomical science in Southern Africa. Gill was selected as he represents an astronomer of outstanding genius who carried out his major work in South Africa.

The medal was designed by Dr P Kirchhoff, President of the Society at the time (1955) and a professional sculptor. The obverse carries a bas-relief portrait of Gill; the reverse incorporates a representation of the heliometer with which Gill undertook much of his positional work including a determination of the solar parallax.

Gill Medalists

  1. D O’Donoghue (2011)
  2. L Cross (2010)
  3. B Monard (2004)
  4. I S Glass (1999) [1999MNSSA..58..101A]
  5. G Nicholson (1997) [1997MNSSA..56…83A]
  6. B Warner (1992) [1992MNSSA..51..106A]
  7. D S Evans (1988) [1988MNSSA..47…90A]
  8. M D Overbeek (1984) [1984MNSSA..43…41A]
  9. M W Feast (1983) [1983MNSSA..42…16A]
  10. C Papadopoulos (1981) [1982MNSSA..41…92A]
  11. A D Thackeray (1976)
  12. J C Bennett (1970) [1970MNSSA..29..123S]
  13. W S Finsen (1967)
  14. R H Stoy (1965) [1965MNSSA..24…55A]
  15. A W J Cousins (1963) [1963MNSSA..22…85A]
  16. W H van den Bos (1960) [1960MNSSA..19…77A]
  17. J Jackson (1958) [1958MNSSA..17…59A]
  18. W P Hirst (1957) [1957MNSSA..16…63A]
  19. H Knox Shaw (1956) [1956MNSSA..15…53A]


  1. Proposal for the Establishment of a Medal [1954MNSSA..13…64.]
  2. The Gill Medal [1955MNSSA..14…24.]
  3. First Award of the Gill Medal: to H. Knox-Shaw [1956MNSSA..15…53.]
  4. Second award of the Gill Medal (W P Hirst) [1957MNSSA..16…63.]
  5. The Gill Medal 1958 (Dr John Jackson) [1958MNSSA..17…59.]
  6. Fourth Gill Medal [1960MNSSA..19Q..77.]
  7. Fifth Gill Medal – A W J Cousins [1963MNSSA..22…85.]
  8. Gill Medal (1965) [1965MNSSA..24…55.]
  9. Presentation of the Gill Medal to Mr J C Bennett [1970MNSSA..29..123S]
  10. The Tenth Gill Medalist: Christos Papadopoulos [1982MNSSA..41…92.]
  11. The Presentation of the 1981 Gill Medal [1982MNSSA..41…94G]
  12. The Eleventh Gill Medallist (M W Feast) [1983MNSSA..42…16.]
  13. The 12th Gill Medallist (M D Overbeek) [1984MNSSA..43…41.]
  14. Award of Gill Medal to Prof D S Evans [1988MNSSA..47…90.]
  15. Award of Gill Medal to Brian Warner [1992MNSSA..51..106.]
  16. Gill Medalist: George Duncan Nicolson [1997MNSSA..56…83.]
  17. Gill Medal award to Ian Stewart Glass [1999MNSSA..58..101.]