Ptolemy, Greek-Egyptian astronomer

Ptolemy, Greek-Egyptian astronomer

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Credit: SHEILA TERRY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Ptolemy, Greek-Egyptian astronomer. This woodcut was made by Albrecht Durer (1471-4582) in 1515. Ptolemy (Claudius Ptolemaeus, AD90-170) wrote four major books, the most influential being Almagest. In this work he collated over 500 years of Greek astronomical thinking. Almagest lays out the universe with the Earth at its centre and all bodies revolving around it. This view persisted until Copernicus' theories some 1300 years later. Ptolemy's other books were concerned with geography and cartography, optics and astrology. These too remained important scientific texts until the scientific revolution of the 16th and 17th centuries. Taken from The Complete Woodcuts of Albrecht Durer by Dr Willi Kurth 1936.

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