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It was not just the Church that resisted the heliocentrism of Copernicus. Many prominent figures, in the decades following the 1543 publication of De Revolutionibus, regarded the Copernican model of the universe as a mathematical artifice which, though it

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Jul 14, 2020

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Random Person of the Day: Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe, born Tyge Ottesen Brahe (December 14, 1546 - October 24, 1601), was a Danish nobleman famed for his accurate and comprehensive astronomical observations. Hailing from Scania, now part of modern-day Sweden, Brahe was well known in his lifetime as an astrologer and alchemist.

The Latinized name Tycho Brahe is usually pronounced [ˈtaɪ.kəʊ ˈbɹɑː.hi] or [ˈtaɪ.kəʊ ˈbɹɑː.ə] in English. The original Danish name Tyge Ottesen Brahe is pronounced in Modern Standard Danish as [ˈtˢyː.y ˈʌ.d̥ə.sn̩ ˈb̥ʁɑː.ʊ].

Tycho Brahe was granted an estate on the island of Hven and the funding to build the Uraniborg, an early research institute, where he built large astronomical instruments and took many careful measurements. As an astronomer, Tycho worked to combine what he saw as the geometrical benefits of the Copernican system with the philosophical benefits of the Ptolemaic system into his own model of the universe, the Tychonic system. From 1600 until his death in 1601, he was assisted by Johannes Kepler, who would later use Tycho's astronomical information to develop his own theories of astronomy. He is universally referred to as "Tycho" rather than by his surname "Brahe", as was common in Scandinavia.

He is credited with the most accurate astronomical observations of his time, and the data were used by his assistant Kepler to derive the laws of planetary motion. No one before Tycho had attempted to make so many redundant observations, and the mathematical tools to take advantage of them had not yet been developed. He did what others before him were unable or unwilling to do — to catalogue the planets and stars with enough accuracy so as to determine whether the Ptolemaic or Copernican system was more valid in describing the heavens.

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