Greek Science

In the tradition of Greek philosophy, Aristotle asserted that nature is understandable and opposed the idea that nature was under the control of capricious deities, which had to be appeased rather than understood. Within this assertion, we start to see the beginnings of the separation between the worldviews being described in terms of theology, philosophy and science. The unsupported belief in capricious gods is challenged by logic, albeit more philosophic in nature and eventually, when subject to empirical verification, proved to be wrong in some key details.

OrbitsAristotelian Universe

Aristotle's universe is divided into two distinct parts, i.e. the earthly region and the heavens. The `Earth` was a place of change, where things came into being, grew, matured, decayed, and died. In contrast, the `Heavens` were a region of perfection, where there was no change. In the earthly region, substances were made up of the four elements: Earth, Water, Air and Fire. Earth was the heaviest, and therefore its natural place was the centre of the universe. Consequently, the natural place of water, air, and fire, were concentric spherical shells around the sphere of earth. As the earthly region was not perfect, areas of land protruded above the water, but objects still sought the natural place of the elements within them. Thus stones, in which earth predominated, move down towards the earth, while fire moves up.