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Cometographia - Study of Comets by Hevelius

Cometographia - Study of Comets by Hevelius Astronomy Famous People Social Studies Aviation & Space Exploration STEM Visual Arts

This image depicts the frontispiece of Cometographia, a famous 1688 work by Johannes Hevelius.  The illustration tells us a story. What is it?

Three different, highly respected individuals have three different ideas about comets:

  • Aristotle, the ancient Greek philosopher, is on the left. He believes that comets are sublunar (meaning they orbit between the Earth and its Moon).
  • Hevelius is in the middle, sitting at a table. He believes that comets originate from either Saturn or Jupiter, then they follow parabolic orbits around the Sun.
  • Johannes Kepler is on the right. He believes that comets move in a straight line.

In addition to the three scientists, we see a rooftop observatory.  It has telescopes and sextants which are used to observe a comet (appearing at the picture’s top-left).

Click on the image for a much-larger view.


Media Credits

Image, described above, online via Sotheby's.

 

PD

 

To cite this story (For MLA citation guidance see easybib or OWL ):

"Cometographia - Study of Comets by Hevelius" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Dec 10, 2017.
       <http://www.awesomestories.com/asset/view/Cometographia-Study-of-Comets-by-Hevelius/1>.
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