cosmology (old style) - 1500 A.D.

Discussion in 'History' started by mathman, Sep 11, 2014.

  1. mathman Valued Senior Member

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    Before Copernicus the western world thought that the earth was the center of the universe. He placed the sun at the center and changed (slowly) how the west viewed the universe. What I am wondering is what sort of cosmology the rest of the world, China, India, Ottoman empire, and in the Western hemisphere, Incas and Aztecs had at that time (~1500).
     
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  3. mathman Valued Senior Member

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    So far - no replies. It looks like an interesting topic for students of the history of science.
     
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  5. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

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    "It is impossible to date when Copernicus first began to espouse the heliocentric theory. Had he done so during his lecture in Rome, such a radical theory would have occasioned comment, but there was none, so it is likely that he adopted this theory after 1500. Further, Corvinus, who helped him print his Latin translation in 1508–09, expressed admiration for his knowledge of astronomy, so that Copernicus's concept may have still been traditional at this point." http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/copernicus/

    Considering that the ancient proposals of Aristarchus were ignored during the centuries before, there would be no heliocentric ripple in that year traveling to other cultures to shake-them up in that particular area. Accordingly, many of their earlier cosmological beliefs (supposed examples below) were probably still in vogue by 1500 [depending upon the cautious traditionalism or speculative inertia of a local population]. Especially since much of their cosmology [in some regions] often had little to do with celestial structure and dynamics, anyway; or pertained to theogony / deity affairs, creation/annihilation sagas, etc. Islamic astronomy treated as a subcategory of it, however, was more subject to development from inventions, reasoning / re-interpretations, etc.

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    An Introduction to Islamic Cosmological Doctrines: http://books.google.com/books/about/An_Introduction_to_Islamic_Cosmological.html?id=IgVtq3kNCrYC

    "...Ptolemy's model of an earth-centered universe formed the basis of Arab and Islamic astronomy, but several Islamic astronomers made observations and calculations which were considerably more accurate than Ptolemy's." http://www.starteachastronomy.com/arab.html

    "During the European Middle Ages, the Islamic world was the center of astronomical thought and activity. During the ninth century several aspects of Ptolemy's solar theory were recalculated. Ibn al-Haytham in the tenth-eleventh century wrote a scathing critique of Ptolemy's work: 'Ptolemy assumed an arrangement that cannot exist, and the fact that this arrangement produces in his imagination the motions that belong to the planets does not free him from the error he committed in his assumed arrangement, for the existing motions of the planets cannot be the result of an arrangement that is impossible to exist'.

    "Swerdlow and Neugebauer stressed that the thirteenth-century Maragha school was also important in finding errors and correcting Ptolemy: 'The method of the Maragha planetary models was to break up the equant motion in Ptolemy's models into two or more components of uniform circular motion, physically the uniform rotation of spheres, that together control the direction and distance of the center of the epicycle, so that it comes to lie in nearly the same position it would have in Ptolemy's model, and always moves uniformly with respect to the equant.'

    "They found that Copernicus used devices that had been developed by the Maragha astronomers Nasir al-Din Tusi (1201-1274), Muayyad al-Din al-Urdi (d. 1266), Qutb al-Din al-Shirazi (1236-1311), and Ibn al-Shatir (1304–1375). In addition, Ragep, 2005, has shown that a theory for the inner planets presented by Regiomontanus that enabled Copernicus to convert the planets to eccentric models had been developed by the fifteenth-century, Samarqand-trained astronomer Ali Qushji (1403–1474). The problem is, as Goddu (476–86) has pointed out, we have no proof of their transmission from east to west. Nevertheless, it is highly unlikely that so many similar techniques were invented independently in the west."
    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/copernicus/

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    Chinese Cosmologies: http://science.jrank.org/pages/8851/Cosmology-Asia-Chinese-Cosmologies.html
    "...the cosmos is often understood as consisting of a dome-shaped heaven (represented as a circle) and a square earth..."

    ...This geocentric model served as the predominant cosmological system in many ancient civilizations [...including...] ancient China." https://www.princeton.edu/~achaney/tmve/wiki100k/docs/Geocentric_model.html

    "...The ancient Chinese people believed that there were actually 10 suns. The sun had such a powerful light and effect on their lives that they felt it must come from more than one source." http://westudent.tripod.com/sunhistory.html

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    Cosmic Cycles of Hindu Cosmology: http://journalofcosmology.com/AncientAstronomy122.html

    "[...] the Indian astonomer and mathematician Aryabhata described elliptical orbits around the Sun at the end of of the 5th Century A.D.; as did the Muslim astronomer Ja'far ibn Muhammad Abu Ma'shar al-Balkhi in the 9th Century. [...] Brahmanda (Cosmic Egg) Universe - The Hindu Rigveda, written in India around the 15th - 12th Century B.C., describes a cyclical or oscillating universe in which a “cosmic egg”, or Brahmanda, containing the whole universe (including the Sun, Moon, planets and all of space) expands out of a single concentrated point called a Bindu before subsequently collapsing again. The universe cycles infinitely between expansion and total collapse.... http://www.physicsoftheuniverse.com/cosmological.html

    Buddhist Cosmologies: http://science.jrank.org/pages/8850/Cosmology-Asia-Buddhist-Cosmologies.html

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    "Cosmology is as old as humankind. Once primitive socal groups developed language, it was a short step to making their first attempts to understand the world around them. Very early cosmology, from Neolithic times of 20,000 to 100,000 years ago, was extremely local. The Universe was what you immediately interacted with. Cosmological things were weather, earthquakes, sharp changes in your environment, etc. Things outside your daily experience appeared supernatural, and so we call this the time of Magic Cosmology." http://abyss.uoregon.edu/~js/ast123/lectures/lec01.html

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    Andean Cosmology: http://www.jqjacobs.net/andes/cosmology.html

    "The astronomers recognized the planet Venus as the same whether it appeared as the morning or evening star. They believed that Venus was a servant of the Sun and was ordered to go ahead of or behind the Sun, but always remain close." http://www.starteachastronomy.com/incan.html

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    "In the Aztec tradition, the universe was not permanent or everlasting. Like all living things it would someday have to come to an end. But the Aztec cosmos doesn't have a single destruction. They pictured time as a cycle of births, destruction, and rebirths. But this cycle couldn't continue for ever; there would only be five ages or "Suns." Each of these ages had its own name, sign, and ruling divinity. Much of the mythology and ritual revolving around this legend took root in Aztec society and thought." http://www.spiritpathways.com/5suns.html

    Astronomy in Ancient Mesoamerica- An Overview: http://journalofcosmology.com/AncientAstronomy101.html

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    Last edited: Sep 16, 2014
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  7. mathman Valued Senior Member

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    It appears that the only civilization outside of Europe to have an evolving development of cosmology was the Arab. When did the rest of the world (particularly India and China) become aware of and adopt the heliocentric model?
     
  8. madethesame Banned Banned

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    india had advanced cosmology :
    http://ajitvadakayil.blogspot.in/2011/11/vedic-cosmology-of-india-5000-bc-capt.html
     

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