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Scientists During the 16th and 17th Century

  • Date Submitted: 05/17/2011 11:27 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 57 
  • Words: 1530
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The sciences in 16th and 17th century Europe were not only the source of great discoveries but often political tools for rulers like Louis XIV. At this time in history Europe was either dominated by the influence of the Pope and the Church or by a Prince in one of the numerous principalities and empires however the catholic principalities also deferred to the Vatican. Some scientists like Copernicus had papal support and or others like Marin Mersenne were sponsored by the wealthy nobility. This support helped some discoveries to flourish and help the cause of mankind while in other cases it caused important ideas to be suppressed. Although political and religious support funded scientists and philosophers in the 16th and 17th it actually hindered the development of modern ideas and theories among scientists. During the 16th and 17th century, the works of scientists were affected by the Church attempting to influence and guide thought, scientists relying on social relationships and interactions to exchange ideas, and political leaders seeking to gain profit and power off of discoveries.

      Scientists challenged the traditional beliefs, but the church attempted to guide information based on scripture.   John Calvin, a French Protestant theologian, claimed that astronomers investigate with hard work whatever the human brain can understand. He claims that the study should not be prohibited, nor should the science be condemned because it goes against the church’s beliefs. John Calvin sees the usefulness of a subject such as astronomy to comprehend wisdoms of god. {Doc.2} Nicolaus Copernicus, Polish priest and astronomer, dedicated a book to Pope Paul III. Nicolaus tries to compliment the Pope as much as he can, in order to get his discoveries approved by the church. Copernicus is willing to take critique. As soon as the church agrees to Copernicus’s discoveries and the science of astronomy, his discoveries can progress further. Copernicus looks to the church for...


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