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Tycho Brahe and the Measure of Heavens - J. R. Christianson (Luther College, Iowa), Charles Burnett (Warburg Institute), François Quiviger (Warburg Institute)

The Danish aristocrat and astronomer Tycho Brahe personified the inventive vitality of Renaissance life in the sixteenth century. Brahe lost his nose in a student duel, wrote Latin poetry and built one of the most astonishing villas of the period, as well as the observatory Uraniborg, while virtually inventing team research and establishing the fundamental rules of empirical science.

This illustrated biography presents a new and dynamic view of Tycho’s life, reassessing his gradual separation of astrology from astronomy, and his key relationships with Johannes Kepler, his sister, Sophie, and his kinsmen at the court of King Frederick II.


John Robert Christianson is Professor Emeritus of History in Luther College, Decorah, Iowa. He has written widely on Scandinavian history and Tycho Brahe, including On Tycho’s Island (2000).

Charles Burnett is Professor of the History of Islamic Influences in Europe at the Warburg Institute.

Renaissance Lives is a series of biographies published by Reaktion Books as well as a series of conversations discussing the ways in which individuals transmitted or changed the lives of traditions, ideas and images. Click here for details.

In the first season staff, fellows and former fellows of the Warburg Institute will discuss the lives of Petrarch, Botticelli, Bosch, Erasmus, Paracelsus, Tycho Brahe, Rembrandt, Rubens and Newton with the authors of their biographies published in the Renaissance Lives Reaktion series.

One week before each event, the book we will discuss will be freely downloadable for a period of 24 hours.

FREE VIA ZOOM. PLEASE BOOK IN ADVANCE