Copernicus Essay

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Copernicus has been named one of the most influential people this millennia by Time Magazine; in part for his movements in though during the scientific revolution; creating a basis for modern astronomy and challenging the Church (of the 15th century) to lead the way to a reform in thinking. He did so by disproving (mathematically) a theory of the heavens that had existed for almost 14 centuries, established by a man named Charles Ptolemy in 250 AD. Copernicus revolutionized astronomy by creating a solid basis for it to stand on, discovering that "The Earth was not the centre of the cosmos, but rather one celestial body among many, as it became subject to mathematical description." He compiled a manuscript of his theories, …show more content…
Any students who had heard his lectures or read his theories were immediately fascinated and learned to follow his research. Copernicus wrote De revoltionibus in six sections, as a mathematical reinterpretation of the Ptolemaic System.

In the first section, he gave some basic mathematical rules, countering old arguments about the fixity of the Earth, and discussed the order of the planets from the sun. He could no longer accept the old arrangement - Earth, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn - since this had been a consequence of a geocentric system. He found it necessary to adapt it to his heliocentric system and adopted the following order from the stationary Sun: Mercury, Venus, Earth with the Moon orbiting around it, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn.Not only was Copernicus correct in his theories, but many of his observations and notions about the functions of our heavens still hold true today. The Copernican theory demanded two important changes in outlook. The first had to with the apparent size of the universe.

The stars always appeared fixed in precisely the same position, but if the Earth orbited around the Sun, they should display a small periodic change. Copernicus explained that the star was far too distant for the change to be detected. His theory thus led to the belief in a much larger universe than previously conceived and, in England, where the theory was openly accepted with enthusiasm, to the idea of an