A More Perfect Heaven: How Copernicus Revolutionized the Cosmos

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In , a young German mathematician, Georg Joachim Rheticus, drawn by rumors of a revolution to rival the religious upheaval of Martin Luther's Reformation, traveled to Poland to seek out Copernicus. Two years later, the Protestant youth took leave of his aging Catholic mentor and arranged to have Copernicus's manuscript published, in , as "De revolutionibus orbium coelestium " "On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres" -the book that forever changed humankind's place in the universe.

"A More Perfect Heaven - How Copernicus Revolutionized the Cosmos" with Dava Sobel - Mar. 20, 2014

In her elegant, compelling style, Dava Sobel chronicles, as nobody has, the conflicting personalities and extraordinary discoveries that shaped the Copernican Revolution. At the heart of the book is her play "And the Sun Stood Still," imagining Rheticus's struggle to convince Copernicus to let his manuscript see the light of day. As she achieved with her bestsellers "Longitude" and "Galileo's Daughter," Sobel expands the bounds of narration, giving us an unforgettable portrait of scientific achievement, and of the ever-present tensions between science and faith.

Sobel is an elegant stylist, a riveting and efficient storyteller, a writer who can bring the dustiest of subjects to full-blooded life — poignant, in the case of Galileo; cautious but also loving, loyal and feisty in the case of Copernicus. By Dava Sobel. Description By , the reclusive cleric Nicolaus Copernicus had written and hand-copied an initial outline of his heliocentric theory-in which he defied common sense and received wisdom to place the sun, not the earth, at the center of our universe, and set the earth spinning among the other planets.

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She lives in East Hampton, New York. Praise For… "Ms. Sobel is an elegant stylist, a riveting and efficient storyteller, a writer who can bring the dustiest of subjects to full-blooded life--poignant, in the case of Galileo; cautious but also loving, loyal and feisty in the case of Copernicus. Sobel certainly brings Copernicus to life, perhaps better than any other author.


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Sobel presents a thoroughly researched and eminently readable account of a major scientist who celebrated the sun yet lurks in the shadows. The haunting final paragraph of this beautiful book, combining science and a sort of poetic awe, is emblematic of her work as a whole.

Dava Sobel discusses and signs A More Perfect Heaven: How Copernicus Revolutionized the Cosmos

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