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    Re: Universe of the ancient Greeks.
    From: Bill B
    Date: 2006 Mar 13, 17:05 -0500

    Lu wrote
    > Given the level of scientific knowledge, inquiry, and downright genius
    > among the ancient Greeks, I'm rather surprised that the idea of a
    > heliocentric universe didn't occur to one of them.
    It did indeed occur to one or more of them, Aristarchus of Samos. (Approx.
    300BC if memory serves--learned initially in a book obtained for me by
    Alex.)  Long story short, the body politic was enamored with Plato et al so
    that was "wrong" in so many ways. That whole circle/sphere/uniform motion
    ran through Copernicus, and partially through Kepler et al.  Problem being,
    no math or physics, and only approximate measurements, to prove/disprove
    theories.  Not dissimilar to the state we can still find "advanced" physics
    in, IMHO.
    Ken of Celestaire mentioned Arthur Koestler's "The Sleepwalkers" on the list
    a while back.  I find it a tough read, as I feel it plays to a well-rounded
    and highly-educated audience, but then takes certain liberties the intended
    reader might (should IMHO) find suspect.  But if you can wade through the
    psychoanalysis ad nauseum and leaps, there is a good view of the history of
    astronomy, as well as other interesting information to be gleaned.

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