What would this heliocentrism story look like if I had remembered it right?
January 19, 2011 10:19 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a quote or a story about heliocentrism, and it goes something like this:

Scientist A (Newton? Kepler?) and Scientist B are sitting around watching the sunset. Scientist B makes some comment about how stupid people must have been in the past to watch a sunset and think that something as beautiful as the sun would have revolved around the earth. Scientist A says something like "yes, they were stupid, but what would a sunset have looked like if they were right?"
posted by Jairus to Science & Nature (2 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I don't have any specifics but I remember James Burke telling that story in either Connections or (more likely) The Day the Universe Changed.
posted by cardboard at 10:40 AM on January 19, 2011

Response by poster: Amazing! Some extra googling turned this up:

Somebody once observed to the eminent philosopher Wittgenstein how stupid medieval Europeans living before the time of Copernicus must have been that they could have looked at the sky and thought the sun was circling the earth. … -Wittgenstein is said to have replied “I agree. But I wonder what it would have looked like if the sun had been circling the earth.”

Thanks so much, cardboard.
posted by Jairus at 10:50 AM on January 19, 2011

« Older Help with a Barking Dog   |   VOIP to Replace Security System Hardlines Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.