29 ožujka 2009

Poland 1000 złotych, 1982

Mikolaj Kopernik (February 19, 1473 – May 24, 1543) was the first astronomer to formulate a comprehensive heliocentric cosmology, which displaced the Earth from the center of the universe. His epochal book, De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres), is often regarded as the starting point of modern astronomy and the defining epiphany that began the Scientific Revolution. Among the great polymaths of the Renaissance, Copernicus was a mathematician, astronomer, physician, classical scholar, translator, artist, Catholic cleric, jurist, governor, military leader, diplomat and economist.

Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopedia Americana and the Microsoft Encarta Online Encyclopedia identify Copernicus as Polish. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy takes a more nuanced stance, declaring, 'Thus the child of a German family was a subject of the Polish crown.' Many people assign a single nationality to Copernicus. Nazi Germany claimed Copernicus to have been purely German, while Poland has always claimed that he was purely Polish. Even today, some Germans and most Poles continue to regard him as having been exclusively their own.

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