Scientific Revolution of 1500's-1600's

Essay by madman20High School, 12th gradeA+, April 2004

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In the 1500's and 1600's, some startling discoveries radically changed the way Europeans viewed how and why things happened in the physical world. Three scientists who contributed to these changed were Nicolaus Copernicus, Galileo Galilei and Isaac Newton. These scientist changed some beliefs of which many had been believed for all of time.

For almost all of time, the geocentric theory was believed to be true. This theory suggested that all planets revolved around the Earth. In 1543, Polish scholar Nicolaus Copernicus published On the Revolutions of the Heavily Spheres. In this book, a new theory was proposed that all planets, including Earth, revolved around the sun. This was called the heliocentric theory. This theory went against religious beliefs and many peoples view of everyday life. Since people ever wondered about the planets and how the move, it was believed that all planets moved around the Earth. This was a religious belief that was challenged by the new idea of the heliocentric model.

Still, the heliocentric model was eventually proven to be a fact, and still stands today.

Copernicus' thoughts were believed by some, but denied the majority of the time. His thoughts were carried on to Galileo Galilei. Galileo created an astronomical telescope and viewed the planets as much as anyone in the world. He came to find that moons orbited around certain planets. This helped support Copernicus' theory. His discovery caused an uproar, again challenging the beliefs of the church and many others. This time, many more people supported the heliocentric theory, which in turn changed society forever. Galileo's supporting of Copernicus' theory brought him to trial. His case was dropped when he said publicly that his supporting of Copernicus' theory was incorrect. He said this publicly, but deep inside, he knew he was right.

The throry that planets revolved around the sun had been discovered. The reason they did this was still unknown. That question was left up to Isaac Newton to answer. In 1687, he published Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy. This book explained the law Newton discovered called gravity. This law proposed that there was a force located at the center of our universe (the sun) which pulled everything to its center and kept the planets revolving in a continuous pattern. This law changed the world around, because it gave us a reason for why a lot of unexplainable acts happened. For example, an apple falling from a tree. No one knew why anything fell to the ground, or why we even stayed on the ground until Newton's law of gravity was discovered.

In conclusion, the scientific revolution changed the worlds beliefs entirely. Religious beliefs were proven to be wrong and questions were answered. Copernicus first with his opinion on the heliocentric theory, Galileo second with proof of Copernicus' theory, and Newton third with the laws of gravity to explain how and why the planets revolved around the sun.