DAVID A. HARDY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID A. HARDY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Copernican Solar System. Artwork showing the Copernican Solar System. Nicolas Copernicus (1473- 1543) was a Polish astronomer. He noted that the standard Ptolemaic model of the universe (with the Earth at the centre) had many inaccuracies. He developed a much simpler model in which the Sun became the centre of the universe, with all of the planets orbiting in circular motions. The planets Uranus, Neptune and Pluto do not appear on this diagram as they had not been discovered when Copernicus put forward his ideas. His book De Revolutionibus Orbium Caelestium, banned by the Catholic Church from 1616 to 1835, is now considered the first of the Age of Science.
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