This monograph addresses the vital impact of ancient Greek thought on Colonial American cosmography, through an analysis of the ways Colonial Americans interpreted and applied Greek ideas. The conflict between the Ptolemaic tradition and the heliocentric model of Copernicus provides a focal point for this study. To highlight this cosmographic reformation, I examine the influence of Greek democratic culture, in particular the tolerance of open discussion, as well as attitudes of scientific objectivity, mathematical reasoning and religious openness. In turn, this cultural inheritance inspired and enabled leading Colonial American cosmographers associated with Harvard and Puritanism to view scientific truth as God’s truth. Thus, religiosity and the understanding of God’s created universe in Colonial America embraced an ongoing journey of discovery shaped by scientific inquiry and an openness to changing received wisdom concerning the cosmos.
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).