Nicolas Copernicus

Here we listed out important facts about famous scientist Nicolas Copernicus, with his Biography, Profile, Facts, Timeline, Awards, Achievement, etc.,

Born: 19 February 1473, Torun, Poland
Died: 24 May 1543, Frombork, Poland
Education: University of Padua (1501–1503)
Fields: Astronomy, Canon law, Economics, Mathematics, Medicine Politics
Known for: Heliocentrism, Gresham’s law, Copernican principle


  • Copernicus is said to be the founder of modern astronomy. He was born in Poland, and eventually was sent off to Cracow University, there to study mathematics and optics; at Bologna, canon law.
  • Returning from his studies in Italy, Copernicus, through the influence of his uncle, was appointed as a cannon in the cathedral of Frauenburg where he spent a sheltered and academic life for the rest of his days.
  • Because of his clerical position, Copernicus moved in the highest circles of power; but a student he remained.
  • For relaxation Copernicus painted and translated Greek poetry into Latin.
  • His interest in astronomy gradually grew to be one in which he had a primary interest.
  • His investigations were carried on quietly and alone, without help or consultation.
  • He made his, celestial observations from a turret situated on the protective wall aroud the cathedral, observations were made “bare eyeball,” so to speak, as a hundred more years were to pass before the invention f the telescope.
  • In 1530, Copernicus completed and gave to the world his great work De Revolutionibus, which asserted that the earth rotated on its axis once daily and traveled around the sun once yearly- a fantastic concept for the times.
  • Up to the time of Copernicus the thinker of the western world believed in the Ptolemaic theory that the universe was a closed space bounded by a spherical envelope beyond which there was nothing.
  • Copernicus was in no burry to publish his theory, though parts of his work were circulated among a few of the astronomers that were giving the matter some thought; indeed, Copernicus work might not have ever reached the printing press if it had not been for a young man who sought out the master in 1539.
  • George Rheticus was a 25 year old German mathematics professor who was attracted to the 66 year old cleric, having read one of his papers. Intending to spend a few weeks with Copernicus, Rheticus ended up staying as a house guest for two years, so fascinated was he with Copernicus and his theories.
  • Now, up to this time, Copernicus was reluctant to publish, not so much that he was concerned with what the church might say about his novel theory, but rather because he was a perfectionist and he never thought, event after working on it for thirty years, that his complete work was ready, there were, as far as Copernicus was concerned, observations to be checked and rechecked.
  • Copernicus die in 1543 and was never to know what a stir his work had caused.
  • Copernicus theories might well lead men to think that they are simply part of nature and not superior to it and that ran counter to the theories of the politically powerful churchmen of the time.
  • Two other Italian scientists of the time, Galileo and Burno, embraced the Copernican theory.
  • Giordano Burno had the audacity to even go beyond Copenicus, and dared to suggest, that spacewas boundless and that the sun was and its planets were but one of any number of similar systems: Why! there even might be other inhabited worlds with rational beings equal or possibly superior to ourselves.
  • The most important aspect of Copernicuc work is that it forever changed the place of man in the cosmos; no longer could man legitimately think his significance greater than his fellow creatures.
  • Copernicus work, man could now take his place among that which exists all about him, and not of necessity take that premier position which had been assigned immodestly to him by the theologians.
  • “Of all discoveries and opinions, none may have exerted a greater effect on the human spirit than the doctrine of Copernicus.


Nicolas Copernicus

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