The Data Fit the Model but the Model is Wrong: Kepler and the Structure of the Cosmos

  • David R. Topper


Planetary Motion Uniform Rotation Platonic Solid Elliptical Path Dwarf Planet 
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  1. David Topper, “The Neutrino and the Sydney Opera House,” Leonardo 30, No. 2 (1997), pp. 81–83.Google Scholar
  2. Kepler’s Mysterium Cosmographicum has been translated as The Secret of the Universe, by A.M. Duncan (New York: Abaris Books, 1981), material quoted from pp. 63–69, 105, and 157. I should point out that this is a translation of the second revised edition of 1621. See also, J.V. Field, Kepler’s Geometrical Cosmology (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1988), and Eric Aiton, “Johannes Kepler and the ‘Mysterium Cosmographicum,”’ Sudhoffs Archiv, vol. 61, No. 2 (1977), pp. 173–194.Google Scholar
  3. The Harmonice Mundi by Kepler has been translated as The Harmony of the World, by E.J. Aiton, A.M. Duncan, and J.V. Field (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society, 1997), material is quoted from pp. 406–407 and 424.Google Scholar
  4. On the revival of ancients texts see Paul Lawrence Rose, “Renaissance Italian Methods of Drawing the Ellipse and Related Curves,” Physis, 12 (1970), pp. 371–404.Google Scholar
  5. On Bode’s law see Michael Hoskin (ed.), The Cambridge Illustrated History of Astronomy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997), pp. 186–193.Google Scholar
  6. For a derivation of the equation for the empty focus, see my “Kepler’s Other ‘Law’ of Planetary Motion,” European Journal of Physics, 12 (1991), pp. 49–50. On Copernicus’s retention of the equant, see Noel M. Swerdlow, “An Essay on Thomas Kuhn’s First Scientific Revolution, The Copernican Revolution,Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, 148, No.1 (March, 2004), pp. 64–120, appendix 2 (pp. 111–115), and Otto Neugebauer, Astronomy and History: Selected Essays (New York: Springer-Verlag, 1983), pp. 92–96.Google Scholar
  7. On Galileo’s father’s music theory, see Stillman Drake, Galileo Studies (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1970), Chapter 2 (“Vincenzio Galilei and Galileo”). On the included plane experiment: “The Role of Music in Galileo’s Experiments,” Scientific American 232 (June, 1975), pp. 98–104.Google Scholar

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • David R. Topper
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of HistoryUniversity of WinnipegWinnipegCanada R3B2E9

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