Heavenly Stuff: The Constitution of the Celestial Objects and the Theory of Homocentric Spheres in Aristotle's Cosmology
This book offers a reappraisal of basic aspects of Aristotelian cosmology. Aristotle believed that all celestial objects consisted of the same substance that pervade the heavens, a stuff unlike those found near the center of the cosmos that compose us and everything in our immediate surroundings. Kouremenos argues that, contrary to the received view, Aristotle originally introduced this heavenly stuff as the matter of the stars alone, the remotest celestial objects from the Earth, and as filler of the outermost part of the heavens, forming a diurnally rotating spherical shell whose fixed parts are the stars, the crust of the cosmos which has the Earth at its center. The author also argues that, contrary to another common view, at no point in the development of his cosmological thought did Aristotle believe the heavens to be structured according to the theory of homocentric spheres developed by his older contemporary Eudoxus of Cnidus, in which the other celestial objects, the five planets known in antiquity, the Sun and the Moon, were hypothesized to move uniformly in circles, as if they were fixed stars.
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Alexander of Aphrodisias altemative solution Anaxagoras argues argument Aristotle Aristotle’s assumed astronomy axis Cael Caelo Callippus celestial matter celestial motions celestial sphere circle circular motion concemed constituting contrary cosmic cosmology cosmos counter-natural deferent shell deferent system difﬁculty distance diumal motion diumal rotation Earth eastwards ecliptic Empedoclean simple bodies etemal Eudemus Eudoxean Eudoxus existence ﬁlled ﬁller ﬁlls ﬁnite ﬁre ﬁrst simple body ﬁve planets ﬁxed stars four traditional simple heavens Heiberg hippopede homocentric spheres icai inﬁnite Kouremenos lunar mass Meraph Moon Moon’s move natural motion nepi nested non-uniform npog opposite orbit ouranos passage path phenomena physical ple body prime unmoved mover realm retrogradations rﬁg rﬁv rtbv Satum sense seven celestial objects Simp Simplicius soul speed spherical shell Sun’s theory of homocentric tion traditional simple bodies tropical period tums uniform upper body wandering celestial objects Yavetz yﬁg yotp zodiacal motion