Modeling the Heavens: Sphairopoiia and Ptolemy’s Planetary Hypotheses

  title={Modeling the Heavens: Sphairopoiia and Ptolemy’s Planetary Hypotheses},
  author={E. Hamm},
  journal={Perspectives on Science},
  • E. Hamm
  • Published 5 July 2016
  • Engineering
  • Perspectives on Science
This article investigates sphairopoiia, the art of making instruments that display the heavens, in Claudius Ptolemy’s Planetary Hypotheses. It takes up two questions: what kind of instrument does Ptolemy describe? And, could such an instrument have been constructed? I argue that Ptolemy did not propose one specific type of instrument, but instead he offered a range of possible designs, with the details to be worked out by the craftsman. Moreover, in addition to exhibiting his astronomical… 
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