Astronomical Images : Arrangement of the spheres of the World according to Copernicus

Johannes Kepler

Astronomical Images

<p style='text-align: justify;'>This figure illustrates Rheticus's account of 'The Arrangement of the Universe' in his <i>Narratio prima</i>. It is one of those designed by Michael Maestlin for his edition (the fourth) of Rheticus's <i>Narratio prima</i>, appended to Kepler's <i>Mysterium cosmographicum</i> (Tuebingen, 1596). It differs in significant respects from its prototype in Copernicus's <i>De revolutionibus</i> (Nuremberg, 1543, f. 9v). Unlike the diagram in <i>De revolutionibus</i> (but like Copernicus's holograph for it), it makes it clear that the planets move in the areas between the circumferences, not along them, and it represents the sphere of the fixed stars as bounded. Further, unlike the diagram in <i>De revolutionibus</i>, it makes explicit the 'immense gap between Saturn and the fixed stars'.</p>


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