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  1. Book Excerptise: A More Perfect Heaven: How Copernicus Revolutionised the Cosmos by Dava Sobel
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Book Excerptise: A More Perfect Heaven: How Copernicus Revolutionised the Cosmos by Dava Sobel

On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres consisted of 6 Books discussing the movements of the Sun and planets in the solar system. The most famous, of course, was Book One, in which Copernicus demonstrated his findings and proved that the Earth moved, thus refuting the geocentric model of the universe that had been accepted before it. This edition of On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres: Book One is specially formatted with a Table of Contents and pictures of Copernicus, his life and work, including pages and illustrations from the original manuscript. Product Details. Average Review.

7. The Source of the Scientific Revolution - Truth Matters - Vishal Mangalwadi

Write a Review. The Englishman John Wilkins published his Discovery of a World in the Moone , a curious work that drew together many of the findings of Kepler and Galileo into an imaginative landscape.


Aimed at what might be called the general reader, Wilkin's book perhaps like Kepler's The Dream lays claim to one of the earliest writings in 'science fiction'. Few others offered observations of this telling event, as sky conditions were not favorable on the continent, certainly not in France. The problem was addressed by a number of members of the Cimento and challenges to explain the phenomenon were sent to others outside of Italy. The large folio volume is widely cited for promoting acquaintance with Kepler's elliptical planetary paths.

For all that, Boulliau roundly rejected Kepler's peculiar mix of ideas concerning the physical causes of the planetary motions. Michael Florentz van Langren published a short work that presented one of the first engraved lunar maps accompanied by a system of nomenclature mostly aimed at obtaining patronage and gaining friendships. Unlike van Langren, Hevelius chooses to avoid naming lunar features in honor of those still living.

Otto von Guericke constructed was it believed to be the first air pump. Blaise Pascal's New Experiments Concerning the Void describes observations concerning the Torricelli mercury tube, arguing that the presence of matter above certain liquids spirits cannot be detected, that is, that the existence of a void cannot be demonstrated by experiment. Oxford Philosophical Society meets for the first time; the group is experimental in approach, and by tradition this group may have been instrumental in establishing the Royal Society of London.

Famously, Hobbes held human life 'solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short'. A competent astronomer, the Jesuit Giovanni Battista Riccioli published his massive New Almagest , a work that treated the efforts of both Copernicus and Kepler but which sought to show that the earth does not move. The group evolved rapidly under its patron, 'Montmor the Rich', H.

Habert de Montmor c. Christiaan Huygens applies the sine law of refraction to spherical lenses.

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It now seems likely that this is the major source of Newton's information about Gassendi's work on atomism and the Frenchman's views on the probable character of knowledge. Otto von Guericke demonstrates the pressure of air by showing that teams of horses could not pull apart two metal hemispheres from which air had been removed, the outside air, he concluded, pressed the two hemispheres immovably together.

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Publication of a detailed exposition of Epicurean philosophy by Pierre Gassendi which incorporates Christian elements and aspects of atomism. The result has been called Gassendi's 'baptism of Epicurus'. Controversy continued regarding how the appearances were to be explained and, perhaps more importantly, concerning the details of Saturn's inclination and the periodicity of its cycle. Malpighi showed in fine detail that blood circulates. In his Sceptical Chymst Robert Boyle argues for experiment against Aristotelian and Paracelsian practitioners, and distinguishes acids and bases.

Descartes distinguishes between light 'as body' and light that we 'see' by suggesting that two different explanations be provided for the same phenomenon. The first publication of the Philosophical Transactions of London , were initiated as a private venture by Henry Oldenburg.

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  • In optics, Francesco Maria Grimaldi describes diffraction of light and proposes a theory to account for how light fails to move in a straight line, most notably as it passes the edge of certain bodies. Robert Hooke publishes his famous Micrographia , which includes useful and stunning etchings of his microscopic observations, the most famous, perhaps, Hooke's flea. Unlike the Royal Society of London, the French academy is based on funded appointments rather than by paying members who propose and elect new members. Robert Boyle in his Origines of Formes and Qualities seeks to explain chemical change by means of "corpuscularianism" small bodies , thereby extending the influence of the mechanical philosophy.


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    Isaac Barrow , first to occupy the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at Cambridge University, resigns, by tradition, in favor of young Isaac Newton. Jan Swammerdam's microscopical work on insects leads him to reject spontaneous generation and to speculate whether organisms are fully formed before fetal development. Jean Picard publishes his seminal work, Mesure de la terre Measure of the Earth , which provides a lucid account and precise measurements for the length of a meridian; Picard's work with the pendulum clock later proved of great importance to Newton in speculating about the shape of the earth.

    Color as a quality was, according to tradition, a quantifiable degree of refrangibility. Marcello Malpighi made rigorous microscopic observation of the embryonic development of the chick and the early formation of organs. Gian Domenico Cassini discovers a gap in the ring system of Saturn, demonstrating that the ring is not a uniform and flat disk. Robert Boyle proposes in his Experiments and Notes about the Mechanical Origin and Production of Electricity that electrical effects can be explained by the emission and refraction of electrical effluvia.

    In London Thomas Shadwell's The Virtuoso satirizes the work of the Royal Society as silly and impractical, thereby rivaling scorn for that institution delivered by Jonathan Swift.

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    Edmond Halley presents a catalogue of the stars in the Southern Hemisphere. The Curator of Experiments presents "Hooke's Law" which states that the "power" of a spring is proportional to its tension. Edme Mariotte c. Robert Hooke wrote a legendary letter asking Newton's opinion on the possibility of explaining the motions of the planets on the assumption of inertia and an attractive power from the sun. This heroic exchange of letters led to a legendary series of events see Halley, below resulting, according to tradition, in Newton's Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy Thomas Burnet's Sacred Theory of the Earth treats the changing character of the earth's surface while following the basic lines of biblical chronology.

    In mathematics, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz's publishes his first paper which supplies forms of notation for the calculus of infinitesimals. Notably, the conversation that unfolds in a garden is between a man and a woman. William Petty's pioneering Political Arithmetic develops mathematical methods as a foundation for political economy. In his Treatise on Light Christiaan Huygens proposes a wave theory against Newton's particulate theory for the propagation of light.