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Body of Copernicus identified
Body of Copernicus identified

Body of Copernicus identified

BBC
November 7, 2005


Scientists say they have probably solved the mystery of where the father of modern astronomy was buried.

Nicolaus Copernicus' 16th century theory that the Earth orbits the Sun was a key scientific development.

A skull and partial remains were discovered two months ago in Frombork Cathedral in north-eastern Poland.

A computer-generated reconstruction of the man's face bears a strong enough resemblance to portraits of Copernicus to convince the scientists.

Piercing eyes

The remains were examined by specialists at the central crime laboratory in the Polish capital, Warsaw.

They found it was the skull of a man who had died aged 60-70. Copernicus died in 1543 aged 70.

Their computer-generated reconstruction shows a white-haired man with a large nose and a small scar above one of his piercing eyes.

Copernicus lived and worked at Frombork cathedral. For many years he was canon there and only carried out his astronomical studies in his spare time.

But despite several archaeological searches, his grave was never located - until last summer's apparent breakthrough.


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