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Nicolaus Copernicus

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Nicolaus Copernicus The sixteenth and seventeenth centuries were known as the Scientific Revolution. During these centuries, science was starting to answer many questions about the earth. Scientists all around the world were making their assumptions on how the universe worked. Nicolaus Copernicus was a Polish astronomer that also had a theory. The Copernican Theory changed many views and had a great effect on society. Copernicus lived his life in Poland. When he was nineteen, he decided to study at the University of Cracow. At the university he was required to study grammar, rhetoric and logic, arithmetic, geometry, music and astrology or astronomy. Edward Rosen is the author of, Copernicus and the Scientific Revolution. He says, "The subjects offered during his years there are known form university records that are still preserved. The names of the professors who taught those courses are also known. But the students’ records are missing."1 The grades that he received in college are unknown. However, it is known that he did not stay long enough to earn a bachelor’s degree.2 After Copernicus left school he returned home to his uncle, Lucas Waczendrode, who was the bishop of Ermeland.3 His uncle suggested that he enter the canonry n Frauenburg. The canonry is a group of clergymen that belong to a cathedral or other church. Entering the canonry would give Copernicus a stable and secure income for the rest of his life. While he waited for an opening, his uncle sent him for training at the University of Bologna.4 While there he studied mathematics and Greek language for three and half years. He also became more familiar with astronomy. In 1501 Copernicus returned to Frauenburg where he became apart of the canonry. He left quickly and started to study in Italy at the University of Padua. There he studied law and medicine.5 After a lifetime of studying, he is said to have mastered the concepts of math, medicine, theology and astronomy.6 As Copernicus began to study astronomy more, he came to strongly disagree with the Ptolemaic system of astronomy. This system was based on the idea that the earth was fixed in the center and all the other heavenly bodies moved around it. Astronomers believed that the earth was in the center because it was heavy. Copernicus saw many problems associated with this system of astronomy. For example, sometimes the planets appeared to be going in the opposite direction and the brightness of the planets would tend to change as well.
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