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QB41 .C76 "Nicolai Copernici Toriensis De revolutionibus orbium coelestium libri vi. Habes in hoc opere iam recens nato, & aedito, studiose lector, motus stellarum, tam fixarum, quam erraticarum, cum ex ueteribus tum etiam ex recentibus obseruationibus restituto"
"Copernicus, Nicolaus, 1473-1543."

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Nicolaus Copernicus, 1473-1543. De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium Libri VI. Nuremberg, Apud Joh. Petreium, 1543.

First edition. Facsimile of errata leaf; woodcut initials; 233 drawings, 101 pages of tables. Binding of old vellum, rebacked.

Copernicus, knowing his discovery would be called heretical, addressed the dedicatory preface to Pope Paul III. Copernicus made systematic astronomical observations for many years, basing his calculations on trigonometry. His heliocentric theory of the planetary system became the cornerstone of modern astronomy. He demonstrated how a heliocentric conception made it possible to accurately calculate planetary positions and distances from the sun and to explain the cycle of seasons, precession of equinoxes and retrograde motion of planets.

This copy was owned at one time by the Harvard professor of astronomy Robert W. Wilson and has his bookplate in it. Professor Owen Gingerich of Harvard has done a census of copies of Copernicus. He notes that this copy is "censored, originally with paper strips pasted on, and with a few other simple notes."

Posner bought the book from H.P. Kraus in 1955; it was one of the first important scientific titles in his collection.



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