Ptolemaic Astronomy, Islamic Planetary Theory, and Copernicus's Debt to the Maragha School - Research Article from Science and Its Times

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Ptolemaic Astronomy, Islamic Planetary Theory, and Copernicus's Debt to the Maragha School

Overview

Ptolemy's (100?-170?) Almagest was first translated into Arabic during the early ninth century. Islamic astronomers initially accepted and worked within the Ptolemaic framework, isolating and correcting erroneous parameters. Objections were later raised concerning Ptolemy's failure to reconcile the mathematical models of the Almagest with the physical spheres they were intended to represent. A group of thirteenth-century Islamic astronomers, known as the Maragha school, revolutionized medieval theoretical astronomy by developing planetary models that resolved the Ptolemaic difficulties. The chief concerns and technical solutions of the Maragha school are evident in the later work of Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543).

Background

Plato (428?-347 B.C.) first challenged astronomers to explain the apparently irregular movements of celestial bodies in terms of uniform circular motions. Eudoxus (408?-355? B.C...

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This section contains 1,751 words
(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Ptolemaic Astronomy, Islamic Planetary Theory, and Copernicus's Debt to the Maragha School Encyclopedia Article
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Science and Its Times
Ptolemaic Astronomy, Islamic Planetary Theory, and Copernicus's Debt to the Maragha School from Science and Its Times. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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