Lecture4 - Quiz 2: Signature Course UGS 303 (Fall 2009)...

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1 The History and Philosophy of Astronomy (Lecture 4: Antiquity II) Instructor: Volker Bromm The University of Texas at Austin Department of Astronomy Signature Course UGS 303 (Fall 2009) Quiz 2: • Question: According to Aristotle, there can only be one Earth (Earth is unique). In particular, this implies that Earth cannot be a planet, because the Greeks knew that there are many planets. Explain why the Earth must be unique within the Aristotelian system of thought! Quiz 2: • Answer: Imagine that there were 2 Earths! What would happen? Center of Universe= center of gravity Would merge into one! Astronomy and Cosmology in Antiquity: Two Threads of Thought • Mainstream (orthodoxy) Antiquity I (Sep. 8) - Plato, Eudoxus, Aristotle, Hipparchus, Ptolemy - Two-sphere-universe - Earth-centered (geocentric) - Planetary motion: in circles, deferent-epicycle • Dissent (heterodoxy) Antiquity II (Sep. 10) - Pythagoras, Democritus, Epicurus, Stoics, Aristarchus - Democritus (atomism) and Aristarchus (Sun-centered) - close to modern world view - but forgotten (suppressed) for 1,400 years
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2 Great Thinkers of Antiquity Zeno (Stoa) Democritus Pythagoras Pythagoras: A Universe governed by Numbers • Pythagoras (c. 580-500 BC) • founder of school/sect (Pythagoreans) • mathematical structure of reality / universe
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Lecture4 - Quiz 2: Signature Course UGS 303 (Fall 2009)...

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