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Tycho Brahe
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Last updated: May 20, 2014
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Who was Tycho Brahe?

Tycho Brahe
Born as Tyge Ottesen Brahe (December 14, 1546--October 24, 1601,) Tycho Brahe was a Danish astronomer, nobleman, and alchemist who is popularized for making incredibly accurate astronomical and planetary observations. Brahe did not use a telescope in his observations, and is therefore revered as one of the last "naked eye" astronomers. Not only is he well known for his own accomplishments in life, but he was also the one who initially hired Johannes Kepler and influenced the latter astronomer's work (who would go on to create his three laws of planetary motion.More info)

  1. The orbit of a planet is an ellipse with the Sun at one of the two foci.
  2. A line segment joining a planet and the Sun sweeps out equal areas during equal intervals of time.
  3. The square of the orbital period of a planet is proportional to the cube of the semi-major axis of its orbit.

It is also a well-known (albeit odd) fact that Tycho lost his nose in a sword duel against his cousin. They apparently quarreled over several subjects; however, the most outlandish was one concerning the legitimacy of a mathematical formula (of which he apparently lost his nose over.)

Great Comet of 1577, artwork by Jiri Daschitzsky.

During Tycho's life he held many accomplishments, one of which revealed to the community that comets were not atmospheric anomalies, but instead objects that traveled above the Earth's atmosphere. He discovered this by observing the C/1577 V1 (Great Comet of 1577.) He also came to the conclusion that a comet's tail points away from the sun. Aside from his discoveries of comets, like many astronomers before (and after) him, Brahe too created a model of the universe to his liking.

Science in Seconds - Tycho Brahe

Family Relations
Tycho Brahe’s father was Otte Brahe of Knutstorp, who was born in 1518. Han was County Sheriff at Helsingborg’s castle between 1567-71, and died there on the 9th of May 1571.

In 1544 he married Beate Bille, who was born on the 29th of April 1526 at Skarhult. She was chief lady-in-waiting to Queen Sophie. Beate Bille died on the 18th of October 1605. Both are buried in Kågeröd’s church.

Otto Brahe and Beate Bille had five sons: Jörgen, Axel, Knud, Steen and Tyge (Tycho), whose twin brother Niels died at birth; and five daughters: Lisbet, Maren, Margrethe, Kirsten, and Sophie

Tycho broke all the rules and married a commoner, Kirstine Barbara Jörgensdatter, who is believed to have been the daughter of the parson of Kågeröd. After Tycho’s death she bought an estate in Bohemia, where she lived out her remaining years. She died in 1604 and was buried in her husband’s grave at the Teyn Church in Prague.

Tycho and Kirstine Barbara had eight children: Kirstine, Magdalene, Claus,
Sophie, Elisabeth, Sidsel, Tyge and Jörgen. Certain writings mention another child, a first-born Otte who died in early childhood. This is probably a confusion with Tycho’s grandson Otte, Tyge’s son.
File:Bille and Brahe family.jpg
File:Bille and Brahe family.jpg

Tycho`s Brothers and Sisters


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Fil:Knud Ottesen Brahe.JPG

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Sophie Brahe
Sophie Brahe


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What was Tycho Brahe famous for?

The Tychonic System

Tycho Brahe: 1583 Tychonic system
The Tychonic System is a Geo-Heliocentric model that Brahe created. In his model, Brahe melded the mathematical aspects of the Copernican system with the physical aspects of the Ptolemic system. Is it entitled as "Geo-Heliocentric" due to the fact that the Earth is in the center of the universe with the sun and moon orbiting it; however, the other planets orbit the sun in this system. His system was heavily influenced by biblical scripture, which shows in his refusal to adopt Copernicus's completely heliocentric model.

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Gold noes

While studying at the University of Rostock in Germany, on 29 December 1566 Tycho lost part of his nose in a sword duel against fellow Danish nobleman (and his third cousin), Manderup Parsberg. Tycho had earlier quarrelled with Parsbjerg over the legitimacy of a mathematical formula, at a wedding dance at professor Lucas Bachmeister's house on the 10th, and again on the 27th. Since neither had the resources to prove the other wrong, they ended up resolving the issue with a duel. Though the two later reconciled, the duel two days later (in the dark) resulted in Tycho losing the bridge of his nose.[15[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tycho_Brahe#cite_note-fn_1-15|]]] From this event Tycho became interested in medicine and alchemy. For the rest of his life, he was said to have worn a replacement made of silver and gold, using a paste or glue to keep it attached. Some people, such as Fredric Ihren and Cecil Adams, have suggested that the false nose also had copper. Ihren wrote that when Tycho's tomb was opened on June 24, 1901, green marks were found on his skull, suggesting copper.Cecil Adams also mentions a green coloring and that medical experts examined the remains. Some historians have speculated that he wore different prosthetics for different occasions, noting that a copper nose would have been more comfortable and less heavy than a precious metal one.[2[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tycho_Brahe#cite_note-Henderson-2|]]] Nonetheless, in November 2012, Danish and Czech researchers, after chemically analyzing "a small bone sample from the nose" from the body exhumed in 2010, reported the prosthetic was "made out of brass".[18[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tycho_Brahe#cite_note-LS-20121116-18|]]]
Outgoing Links

Monument of Tycho Brahe and Johannes Kepler in Prague, Czechia

Telma Chicas, Fall 2011 Steven Hansen
Tycho Brahe Homepage
The Tycho Brahe Homepage is an extremely well made web page with a wealth of information about Tycho. This website is well-written and is very well rounded including all aspects of Tycho's life. Not only does it have the usual information, like his precise astronomical date, but also quirky and interesting date about his castle and his pet moose. This web page seems to be geared toward high school students with a wealth of information, but a simple writing style. Navigation is extremely easy, with very few embedded or hidden files. This web page was last updated September 9, 2002.
Tycho Brahe
The University of Cambridge, or more specifically Adam Mosley, has created a very accurate and well constructed web page. This page mainly encompasses Tycho's scholarly attributes, such as his mathematical techniques and his astrology background. This site is fairly obviously geared towards college and grad level students. This is evidenced by the accurate sourcing and the use of precise dates. Navigation is slightly difficult, due to it being a larger and more fact-filled site. This site was made in 1999 and is no longer being updated.
The Galileo Project
The Galileo Project is visually much more well made than the other sites. The site is much more pleasing to the eye than most other pages that are out today. Unfortunately the web pages main focus is on Galileo, which leaves the Tycho Brahe section hidden in a list of other scientists. Tycho's page is a little long, due to the single page that is focused on Brahe. Once located, the site reveals a surprising amount of accurate facts about Brahe. Mainly geared towards high school and college students, this site has sources, accurate facts, and quirky bits of information. This page was written by Al Van Helden and was last updated in 1995.
The Observations of Tycho Brahe
Unfortunately this page is little more than a two page summary of Tycho's works. Navigation is almost non-existent and there is so little accurate information that it borders on common knowledge. This page is good for young teenagers to read a brief summary of Tycho Brahe if only to decide whether or not further study would be worthwhile. The author and date of update are not listed.
Tycho Brahe
This site, by Michael Fowler, is packed with facts, dates, and a brief life story of Tycho Brahe. The major downsides to this page is the blandness of the page and the navigation that is virtually absent. Also it seems that there are several inaccurate twists to the story, such as substituting Tycho's pet moose for an elk. A great source of doing serious research, but the paragraph format does not allow for quick scanning of the page for information. Last updated in 1996.

Wikipedia: Tycho Brahe
I found Tycho Brahe’s Wikipedia page most useful for the general audience because it includes almost everything you need to know. It starts off with a quick overview that begins with brief descriptions of things like the origin of his name, decent, and his most respected accomplishments. Then as you scroll down a table of contents is listed with such titles like Early Years, Brahe’s Nose, and Death that further illustrate his life in depth; making it easier for the general audience to navigate the page. This site also outlines his career, observations, theories, and most importantly the legacy of the man with the golden nose. I personally give this website Five Stars *, mostly because its perfect for students who may need references for writing papers (since there is a clear list at the bottom of the page) and partially because Tycho was the biggest party animal of the 16th century! It was last updated on December 05, 2011.

Biography of Tycho Brahe
This page is very limited to how much information it provides. The intended audience audience is aimed more towards high school leveled students. This page provides the basic information regarding Tycho, like his birth date, some family information, his education and some of his accomplishments. I recommend this site for anybody who is trying to figure out just who Tycho is, rather than an in-depth description of his life. The author is Melissa Kelly and the last update is not stated.
Interesting Facts about Tycho
This Web page contains very basic information regarding Tycho's history. It includes basic information like where he was born, where he studied, and some of his accomplishments. This page also contains some fun facts about him, like the fact that he was raised by his uncle and that he has two craters named after him as well. The intended audience is more of a younger age, maybe high school level students. I recommend this site for somebody who is not looking to write a biography or essay on him but rather find out just who he is. The author is Brian Jones and it was last updated September 01, 2011.
Tycho Brahe's Nose, and the Moose
This web page contains only certain events of Tycho's life, in this case it discusses Tycho's gold nose as well as his pet moose. The intended audience is basically everyone. This page would be good for somebody who heard about Tycho's nose incident and his pet moose but that is it. It doesn't say anything about any other aspect of his life and the events are mentioned in a short non-descriptive manner. The page doesn't have much navigation to it with the exception of a few links. The author and the last date updated are not mentioned and the page itself doesn't have much credibility.
Tycho Brahe Biography
This page gives its audience a more in-depth description of who Tycho really was.It starts with his birth and it progresses with his accomplishments and discoveries. With three pages in length, the author walks you through the different stages of Tycho's life. This page is a biography of Tycho's life beginning with his life all the way to his death and highlighting all the important events in between. The intended audience is more for college students. I recommend this web page for somebody who is trying to get a feel of who Tycho is. The author is Thomson Gale and the last update is not stated.

A biography of Tycho Brahe
This biography, an article written by J. J. O'Connor and E.F. Robertson, is a decent reference for the casual studious student. It was written and quite possibly last reviewed in 2003. The references used and detailed at the bottom of the page are mostly sound, as is the writing displayed. Any reader could make sense of the grammatical format, as well the the website's layout.
Multimedia Catalogue, Tycho Brahe
A brief, but informational segment on Tycho Brahe. The segment as well as the website were composed some time between 1995 and 2010, and was written by Piazza dei Giudici. The general audience for such a segment is generically aimed toward interested persons who wish for a quick, easy explanation of who Tycho Brahe was, and what he brought to the scientific community. Unless directed to the page in question, the website itself would be somewhat difficult to navigate. It lacks a convenient search bar, and is clearly not "dedicated" to the observations of Tycho Brahe.
The Tychonic System
What is The Tychonic System While not entirely focused on Tycho Brahe himself, this website is dedicated to explaining Brahe's universal model. There is no date or time stamp, although it apparently references Wikipedia as a source. There is also no "author," however, as an informational piece it works fairly well. For students or curious observers who need a quick, but detailed explanation of the Tychonic system, then this article will be more than exemplary. The website isn't entirely easy to use, nor is it clear what the main focus is, but the article itself is well done.
NNDB Tycho Brahe
Soylent Communications' article on Tycho Brahe is quaint, but informative. It's a short bibliography, but for students or observers who only need a simple explanation, then it works well enough. The sources and references mentioned on the page are decent, and the search feature in the website itself is a great tool. Aside from the lacking time and date stamp, the website is fairly useful regardless of who specifically wrote it.
The Impact of New and Better Data: Tycho Brahe
A poorly formatted, but interesting page. This page details the impact of Brahe's discovery on the world during his time of life, and what his discoveries marked on history's continual growth. All content on the page has been credited elsewhere, however, the editor has used this information by use of an interesting, graphical method. The website itself is somewhat elementary in form, but it is easy aimed toward simple curiosity. It is a quick, simple description of how and why Tycho Brahe was an influence in both his time and ours. There is no time and date stamp, and the supposed editor is named G.H. Rieke.
What is the The Tychonic System