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Aristarchos, Copernicus, Bruno, Galilei and the truth

Greek astronomer Aristarchos of Samos hypothesized in the 3rd century BC that earth is not the center of the universe but revolves around the sun, a concept that was not accepted at the time. Cleanthes, the philosopher, declared that Aristarchos should be indicted for impiety.

In 1530, Nikolaus Copernicus completed his great work De Revolutionibus, which asserted that the earth rotated on its axis once daily and traveled around the sun once yearly. Copernicus, the ever perfectionist, was reluctant to publish the work, distributing only portions of it among astronomers. His concept would be promoted by Giordano Bruno, Galileo Galilei and Johannes Kepler. For his beliefs, Bruno was put to death by burning in 1600 by the Roman Inquisition. In 1633, Galilei was brought before the Inquisition, charged with heresy and made to publicly renounce his beliefs in the Copernicus theory. In 1992, Pope John Paul said the church’s denunciation of Galileo’s work had been a tragic error and in 2008 Pope Benedict XVI paid tribute to Galilei.

Here’s to the great believers of truth!

22/12/2008. Category: People. Topic: .

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