What Did Copernicus Invent?

Polish astronomer Nicolas Copernicus, considered the father of modern astronomy, is also, for all intents and purposes, the inventor of the globe. To illustrate his belief that the Earth was spherical, Copernicus built globes and terrain models called armillary spheres. These constructions were the first globes.

Prior to Copernicus, the idea that the Earth was the center of the universe was largely unquestioned. This presumption had held sway since the time of Aristotle (4th century B.C.) and Ptolemy (2nd century B.C.). Copernicus invented the Copernican System in the early 16th century, which first asserted the heliocentric universe. Without the theories of Copernicus, astronomy as it is known would have been impossible.