- Until the 16th century most people thought the Earth was the center of the Universe and that everything – the Moon, Sun, planets and stars – revolved around it.
- Nicolaus Copernicus was the astronomer who first suggested that the Sun was the center, and that the Earth went round the Sun. This is called the heliocentric view.
- Copernicus was born on 19 February 1473 at Torun in Poland, and died on 24 May 1543.
- Coperincus had an extensive education at the best universities in Poland and Italy. He studied astronomy and astrology, medicine and law.
- Copernicus described his iadeas in a book called De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (‘On the revolutions of the heavenly spheres’).
- The Roman Catholic Church banned Copernicus’s book for almost 300 years.
- Copernicus’s ideas came not from looking at the night sky but from studying ancient astronomy.
- Copernicus’s main clue came from the way the planets, every now and then, seem to perform a backward loop through the sky.
- The first proof of Copernicus’s theory came in 1609, when Galileo saw (through a telescope) moons revolving around Jupiter.
- The change in ideas that was brought about by Copernicus is known as the Copernican Revolution.
The information for Science Saturdays is obtained from a fun book we found in a thrift store in New Zealand. It has 8 sections of 1,000 detailed topics each. They are Space, Planet Earth, Wild Animals, Human Body, Science, Buildings and Transport, World Geography, and Plants. While the version we found is older, they do have updated versions. Much of the information has not changed since it’s publish date. We have found it a very fun book with bitesized bits of data.
8000 things you should know. (2006). Great Bardfield, Essex, Essex: Miles Kelly Pub. doi:10: 1-84236-804-4