Tycho Brahe

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Brahe was a Danish astronomer, and of enormous importance to map-makers. He produced his own star catalogue to replace Ptolemy’s ‘Almagest’, which was eventually published by Johannes Kepler, recording the positions for 1,006 stars. It also inspired him to consider the theory of concentric “heavenly spheres”, which were imagined to be hard, clear, and crystalline. With the patronage of the King of Denmark, in 1580 Brahe built an observatory named Uraniaborg, after the ancient goddess Urania, the Muse of Astronomy. The Blaeu family published detailed images of the observatory and Brahe’s instruments in the atlases. In Andreas Cellarius’s celestial atlas, Brahe is seated with his famous observatory visible behind him. Brahe maintained a geocentric model of the universe throughout his career.

Painted portrait of Tycho Brahe, dressed in fine clothes and holding a pair of gloves in his left hand.