Ptolemy's observatory, 2nd century AD

Ptolemy's observatory, 2nd century AD

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Claudius Ptolemy (AD c100-170), Greek-Egyptian astronomer, geographer and mathematician at his observatory in Alexandria, Egypt. Among the instruments seen here are Ptolemy's rulers (lower centre) and a copper disc (far right), which he used to demonstrate the law of reflection. At this observatory Ptolemy made the observations that supported Earth-centred models of solar and planetary motion. This view dominated astronomical thinking until the mid 16th century. Engraving from Vies des Savants Illustres (1877).

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