Nicolaus Copernicus was the first to publish a full-fledged theory
that the earth was not the center of the universe (as was the
current thought in the 1500's) and that the earth actually revolved
around the sun. Copernicus also theorized that the earth rotated
on its axis, which accounted for the daily movement of the stars.
Since 150 AD to the 1500's, the Ptolemy's theory prevailed that
the earth was the flat center of the universe that did not rotate
or revolve. This theory was well accepted by both scientific and
religious communities. Nicolaus Copernicus did not publish his
theory right away but chose to publish De revolutionibus orbium
coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres) near
his death in 1543.
It has been reported that Nicolaus Copernicus delayed in publishing
his theories for fear of persecution from both the religious and
scientific communities. As a modest man, he once stated, "For
I am not so enamored of my own opinions that I disregard what others
may think of them." One account states that Copernicus published
his revolutionary work near his death in 1543, awoke from a stroke-induced
coma clutching his opus vitae (life's work) and then died peacefully.
Nicolaus Copernicus was truly a Renaissance Man in the original
and truest sense of the word. He was a physician, mathematician,
astronomer, governor, jurist, diplomat, classical scholar, economist,
administrator, and soldier. Nicolaus Copernicus was born on February
19, 1473 in Toru?, Royal Prussia. He Died on May 24, 1543 in Frombork,
Rumor Has It …
Rumor has it that as a Renaissance Man, Nicolaus Copernicus discovered
many unique and delightful things and invented the precursors to
both the Popeil's Pocket Fisherman and the Ginsu Knives.
Another unsubstantiated, outrageous and ridiculous account states
that Nicolaus Copernicus in his leisure time used to like to travel
among the Italian hillsides, confront goats and tickle them underneath
their chins, saying "Hey, Kiddo, who's yer daddy?"
Written by Kevin Lepton