Tycho de Brahe

11-11-2001

By Alena Skodova

Tycho de BraheTycho de Brahe Well, today's programme starts - for a change - with science, though it could well be presented as 'the art of science', as I'm going to take you to the court of emperor Rudolf II, one of most popular figures in Czech history.

Prague recently hosted an international symposium on the history of science in the Rudolphine period, organized on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of the death of Tycho de Brahe, a famous Danish astronomer, who lived towards the end of his life at the imperial court of Prague.

Emperor Rudolf II was one of only a few Czech rulers who moved his court from Vienna to Prague. At the end of the 16th century, his court was one of the most famous in Europe, as Rudolf was an ardent lover of art and science and he used to invite prominent figures from both fields to Prague to do research. One of the scientists was the renowned Danish astronomer Tycho de Brahe. I spoke with professor Owen Gingerich from the Harvard-Smithonian Centre for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, who first told me why had Tycho moved to Prague in the first place: