When Napier published the Canonis Descriptio England had taken no part in the advance of science, and there is no British author of the time except Napier whose name can be placed in the same rank as those of Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Kepler, Galileo, or Stevinus.
In some of these we see a return to Greek theories, though the influence of physical discoveries, more especially those of Copernicus, Kepler and Galileo, is distinctly traceable.
In the system of Giordano Bruno, who sought to construct a philosophy of nature on the basis of new scientific ideas, more particularly the doctrine of Copernicus, we find the outlines of a theory of cosmic evolution conceived as an essentially vital process.
It figured in astronomical tables until the time of Copernicus, but is now known to have no foundation in fact, being based on an error in Ptolemy's determination of precession.
COPERNICUS (or [[Koppernigk), Nicolaus]] (1473-1543), Polish astronomer, was born on the 19th of February 1473, at Thorn in Prussian Poland, where his father, a native of Cracow, had settled as a wholesale trader.