An Edition and Translation with Accompanying Essays
Miguel A. Granada, Adam Mosley and Nicholas Jardine
Robert Alan Hatch
the learned? Why did the Copernican view prevail? And most telling, how were the two questions linked? In this brief essay, I examine a dramatic controversy to argue that the shared territory between the Astrology Question and the Copernican Question determined the legitimate victor. No historical
The Poetics of Early Modern Astronomy
Ladina Bezzola Lambert
Copernican theory redefined the role and importance of the imagination even as it implied the moment of its crisis. Based on this claim, Ladina Bezzola Lambert analyzes seventeenth-century astronomical texts – particularly descriptions of the moon and treatises written in support of the theory of the plurality of worlds – to show how early modern astronomers questioned the role of the imagination as a tool to visualize the unknown, but also how, pressed by the need to support their theories with convincing descriptions of other potential worlds, they sought to overcome the limitations of the imagination with a sophisticated rhetoric and techniques more commonly associated with poetic writing. The limitations of the imagination are at once a problem that all of the texts discussed struggle with and their recurrent theme.
In the first and last chapter, the focus shifts to a more explicitly literary context: Ariosto’s Orlando furioso and the work of Italo Calvino. The change of focus from science to literature and from the narratives of the past to contemporary ones serves to emphasize that the issues relating to the imagination, its limitations and creative means, are basically the same both in science and literature and that they are still relevant today.
According to Ptolemy, Copernicus and Reinhold
In particular, this work analyses the geocentric distances of the sun and moon as found in Ptolemy's Almagest, in both the manuscript version and the Nuremberg edition of Copernicus' De Revolutionibus, in Reinhold's commentary on the Almagest, and in Reinhold's commentary on this section of De Revolutionibus. Chapter one contains a detailed analysis of the lunar distance, and chapter two concerns the apparent diameters of the sun, moon and shadow. The Ptolemaic method, which is the model for Copernicus and Reinhold, requires the determination of these quantities as a preliminary to the calculation of the solar distance, which is treated in chapter three. The fourth chapter is a brief analysis of the relative magnitudes of the sun, moon and earth, which Ptolemy, Copernicus and Reinhold discuss after they have reached values of the lunar and solar distances. The final chapter concerns an application of the distances - the solar and lunar parallaxes and diameters.
Reception, Legacy, Transformation
Pietro Daniel Omodeo
Robert Westman has been a leading scholar of early modern astronomy for many decades. In particular, his work has decisively influenced the ideas on the early reception of Copernicus’ work. Several of his articles have become standard references. The Copernican Question , his long-awaited book on
PIETRO DANIEL OMODEO
GIORDANO BRUNO AND NICOLAUS COPERNICUS T H E M O T I O N S OF THE EARTH IN T H E A S H WEDNESDAY SUPPER PIETRO DANIEL OMODEO ABSTRACT Explaining the Copernican doctrine in a concise passage of The Ash Wednesday Supper (La cena de le Ceneri, London, 1584), Giordano Bruno ascribed four motions to