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have had the same reason for relying on the accuracy of his supposition. As it was, the result utterly confounded him; and he was obliged to leave it with the remark, that " the two theories are thus proved to be the same in fact, and only different in form; although how that can possibly be, I have never to this day been able to understand."—His perplexity was very reasonable; they are by no means the same; it was only his method of juggling with the figures which seemed to connect them.
Notwithstanding all its faults, the genius and unwearied perseverance displayed by Kepler in this book, immediately ranked him among astronomers of the first class; and he received the most flattering encomiums from many of the most celebrated; among others, from Galileo and Tycho Brahe, whose opinion he invited upon his performance. Galileo contented himself with praising in general terms the ingenuity and good faith which appeared so conspicuously in its Tycho Brahe entered into a more detailed criticism of the work, and, as Kepler shrewdly remarked, showed how highly he thought of it by advising him to try to adapt something of the same kind to the Tychonic system. Kepler also sent by copy of his book to the imperial astronomer, Raimar, with a complimentary letter, in which he exalted him above all other astronomers of the age. Raimar had surreptitiously acquired a notion of Tycho Brahe's theory, and published it as his own; and Tycho, in his letter, complained of Kepler's extravagant flattery. This drew a long apologetical reply from Kepler, in which he attributed the admiration he had expressed of Raimar to his own want of information at that time, having since met with many things in Euclid and Regiomontanus, which he then believed original in Raimar. With this explanation, Tycho protessed himself perfectly satisfied.
Kepler's Marriage—He joins Tycho Brahe at Prague—Is appointed Imperial Mathematician—Treatise on the New Star.
The publication of this extraordinary book, early as it occurs in the history of Kepler's life, was yet preceded by his marriage. He had contemplated this step so early as 1592; but that suit having been broken off, he paid his ad
dresses, in 1596, to Barbara Muller von Muhleckh. This lady was already a widow for the second time, although two years younger than Kepler himself. On occasion of this alliance he was required to prove the nobility of his family, and the delay consequent upon the inquiry postponed the marriage till the followmg year. He soon became involved in difficulties in consequence of this inconsiderate engagement: his wife's fortune was less than he had been led to expect, and he became embroiled on that account with her relations. Still more serious inconvenience resulte 1 to him from the troubled state in which the province of Styria was at that time, arising out of the disputes in Bohemia and the two great religious parties into which the empire was now divided, the one headed by Rodolph, the feeble minded emperor,—the other by Matthias, his ambitious and enterprising brother.
In the year following his marriage, he thought it prudent, on account of some opinions he had unadvisedly promulgated, (of what nature does not very distinctly appear,) to withdraw himself from Gratz into Hungary. Thence he transmitted several short treatises to his friend Zehentmaier, at Tubingen—" On the Magnet," "On the Cause of the Obliquity of the Ecliptic," and " On the Divine Wisdom, as shown in the Creation." Little is known of these works beyond the notice taken of them in Zehentmaier's answers. Kepler has himself told us, that his magnetic philosophy was built upon the investigations of Gilbert, of whom he always justly spoke with the greatest respect.
About the same time a more violent persecution had driven Tycho Brahe from his observatory of Uraniburg, in the little island of Hueen, at the entrance of the Baltic. This had been bestowed on him by the munificence of Frederick I. of Denmark, who liberally furnished him with every means of prosecuting his astronomical observations. After Frederick's death, Tycho found himself unable to withstand the party which had constantly opposed him, and was forced* at a great loss and much inconvenience, to quit his favourite island. On the invitation of the emperor, Rudolph II.. he then betook himself, after a short stay at Hamburg, to the castle of Benach, near Prague, which was assigned to him with an annual pension of three thousand florins, a truly munificent provision in those times and that country.
Kepler had been eager to see Tycho Brahe since the latter had intimated that his observations had led him to a more accurate determination of the excent ricities of the orbits of the planets. By help of this, Kepler hoped that his theory might be made to accord more nearly with the truth; and on learning that Tycho was in Bohemia, he immediately set out to visit him, and arrived at Prague in January, 1600. From thence he wrote a second letter to Tycho, not having received the answer to his former apology, again excusing himself for the part he had appeared to take wilh Raimar against him. Tycho replied immediately in the kindest manner, and begged he would repair to him directly: —" Come not as a stranger, but as a very welcome friend; come and share in my observations with such instruments as I have with me, and as a dearly beloved associate." During his stay of three or four months at Benach, it was settled that Tycho should apply to the emperor, to procure him the situation of assistant in the observatory. Kepler then returned to Gratz, having previously received an intimation, that he might do so in safety. The plan, as it had been arranged between them was, that a letter should be procured from the emperor to the states of Styria, requesting that Kepler mightjoin Tycho Brahe for two years, and retain his salary during that time: B hundred florins were to be added annually by the emperor, on account of the greater dearness of living at Prague. But before everything was concluded, Kepler finally threw up his situation at Gratz, in consequence of new dissensions. Fearing that this would utterly put an end to his hopes of connecting himself with Tycho, he determined to revive his claims on the patronage of the Duke of Wirtemberg. With this view he entered into correspondence with Mastlin and some of his other friends at Tubingen, intending to prosecute his medical studies, and offer himself for the professorship of medicine in that university. He was dissuaded from this scheme by the pressing instances of Tycho, who undertook to exert himself in procuring a permanent settlement for him from the emperor, and assured him, even if that attempt should fail, that the language he had used when formerly inviting him to visit him at Hamburg, should not be forgotten. In consequence of this en
couragement," Kepler abandoned his former scheme, and travelled again with his wife to Prague. He was detained along time on the road by violent illness, and his money became entirely exhausted. On this he wrote complainingly to Tycho, that he was unable without assistance to travel even the short distance which still separated them, far less to await much longer the fulfilment of the promises held out to him.
By his subsequent admissions, it appears that for a considerable time he lived entirely on Tycho's bounty, and by way of return, he wrote an essay against Raimar, and against a Scotchman named Liddell, professor at Rostoch and Helmstadt, who, like Raimar, had appropriated to himself the credit of the Tychonic system. Kepler never adopted this theory, and indeed, as the question merely regarded priority of invention, there could be no occasion, in the discussion, for an examination of its principles.
This was followed by a transaction, not much to Kepler's credit, who in the course of the following year, and during a second absence from Prague, fancied that he had some reason to complain of Tycho's lehaviour, and wrote him a violent letter, filled with reproaches and insults. Tycho appears to have behaved in this affair with great moderation: professing to be himself occupied with the marriage of his daughter, he gave the care of replying to Kepler's charges, to Ericksen, one of his assistants, who, in a very kind and temperate letter, pointed out to him the ingratitude of his behaviour, and the groundlessness of his dissatisfaction. His principal complaint seems to have been, that Tycho had not sufficiently supplied his wife with money during his absence. Ericksen's letter produced an immediate and entire change in Kepler's temper, and it is only from the humble recantation which he instantaneously offered that we learn the extent of his previous violence. "Most noble Tycho," these are the words of his letter, "how shall I enumerate or rightly estimate your benefits conferred on me! For two months you have liberally and gratuitously maintained me, and my whole family; you have provided for all my wishes; you have done me every possible kindness; you have communicated to me everything you hold most dear; no one, by word or deed, has intentionally injured me in anything: in short, not to your children, your wife, or yourself have you shown more indulgence than to me. This being so, as I am anxious to put upon record, I cannot reflect without consternation that I should have been so given up by God to my own intemperance, as to shut my eyes on all these benefits; that, instead of modest and respectful gratitude, I should indulge for three weeks in continual moroseness towards all your family, in headlong passion, and the utmost insolence towards yourself, who possess so many claims on my veneration from your noble family, your extraordinary learning, and distinguished reputation. Whatever I have said or written against the person, the fame, the honour, and the learning of your excellency; or whatever, in any other way, I have injuriously spoken or written, (if they admit no other more favourable interpretation,) as to my grief I have spoken and written many things, and more than I can remember; all and everything I recant, and freely and honestly declare and profess to be groundless, false, and incapable of proof." Hoffmann, the president of the states of Syria, who had taken Kepler to Prague on his first visit, exerted himself to perfect the reconciliation, and this hasty quarrel was entirely passed over.
On Kepler's return to Prague, in September, .1601, he was presented to the Emperor by Tycho, and honoured with the title of Imperial Mathematician, on condition of assisting Tycho in his calculations. Kepler desired nothing more than this condition, since Tycho was at that time probably the only person in the world who possessed observations sufficient for the reform which he now began to meditate in the theory of astronomy. Rudolph appears to have valued both Tycho Brahe and Kepler as astrologers rather than astronomers; but although unable to appreciate rightly the importance of the task they undertook, of compiling a new set of astronomical tables founded upon Tycho's observations, yet his vanity was flattered with the prospect of his name being connected with such a work, and he made liberal promises to defray the expense of the new Rudolphine Tables. Tycho's principal assistant at this time was Longomontanus, who altered his name to this form, according to the prevalent fashion of giving to every name a Latin termination. Lomborg or Longbierg was the name, not of his family, but of the village in Denmark, where he was
born, just as Miiller was seldom called by any other name than Regiomontanus, from his native town Konigsberg, as George Joachim Rheticus was so surnamed from Rhetia, the country of the Grisons, and as Kepler himself was sometimes called Leonmontanus, from Leonberg, where he passed his infancy. It was agreed between Longomontanus and Kepler, that in discussing Tycho's observations, the former should apply himself especially to the Moon, and the latter to Mars, on which planet, owing to its favourable position, Tycho was then particularly engaged. The nature of these labours will be explained when we come to speak of the celebrated book "On the Motions of Mars."
This arrangement was disturbed by the return of Longomontanus into Denmark, where he had been offered an astronomical professorship, and still more by the sudden death of Tycho Brahe himself in the following October. Kepler attended him during his illness, and #after his death undertook to arrange some of his writings. But, in consequence of a misunderstanding between him and Tycho's family, the manuscripts were taken out of his hands; and when, soon afterwards, the book appeared, Kepler complained heavily that they had published, without his consent or knowledge, the notes and interlineations added by him for his own private guidance whilst preparing it for publication.
On Tycho's death, Kepler succeeded: him as principal mathematician to the emperor; but although he was thus nominally provided with a liberal salary, it was almost always in arrear. The pecuniary embarrassments in which he constantly found himself involved, drove him to the resource of gaining a livelihood by casting nativities. His peculiar temperament rendered him not averse from such speculations, and he enjoyed considerable reputation in this line, and received ample remuneration for his predictions. But although he did not scruple, when consulted, to avail himself in this manner of the credulity of his contemporaries, he passed over few occasions in his works of protesting against the futility of this particular genethliac astrology. His own astrological creed was in a different strain, more singular, but not less extravagant. We shall defer entering into any details concerning it, till we come to treat of his book on Harmonics, in which he has collected and recapitulated the substance of his scattered opinions on this strange subject.
His next works deserving notice are those published on occasion of the new star which shone out with great splendour in 1 6O-l, in the constellation Cassiopeia *. Immediately on its appearance, Kepler wrote a short account of it in German, marked with all the oddity which characterises most of his productions. We shall see enough of his astronomical calculations when we come to his book on Mars; the following passage will probably be found more amusingAfter comparing this star with that of 1572, and mentioning that many persons who had seen it maintained this to be the brighter of the two, since it was nearly twice the size of its nearest neighbour, Jupiter, he proceeds as follows :— "Yonder one chose for its appearance a time no way remarkable, and came into the world quite unexpectedly, like an enemy storming a town, and breaking into the market-place before the citizens are aware of his approach;, , but ours has come exactly in the year of which astrologers have written so much about the fiery trigon that happens in it t; just in the month in which (according to Cyprian) Mars comes up to a very perfect conjunction with the other two superior planets; just in the day when Mars has joined Jupiter, and just in the place where this conjunction has taken place. Therefore the apparition of this star is not like a secret hostile irruption, as was that one of 1572, but the spectacle of a public triumph, or the entry of a mighty potentate; when the couriers ride in some time before, to prepare his lodgings, and the crowd of young urchins begin to think the time over-long to wait: then roll in, one after another, the ammunition, and money, and baggage waggons, and presently the trampling of horse, and the rush of people from every side to the streets and windows; and when the crowd have gazed with their jaws all agape at the troops of knights; then at last, the trumpeters, and archers, and lackeys, so distinguish the person of the monarch, that there is no occasion to point him out, but every one cries out of his own accord—' Here we have him!'—What it may portend is hard to determine, and
• See Life of Galileo, p. 16. t The fiery trigon ocean about once In every 800 years, when Saturn, Jupiter, and Mars are in the three fiery signs, Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius.
thus much only is certain, that it comes to tell mankind either nothing at all, or high and weighty news, quite beyond human sense and understanding. It will have an important influence on political and social relations; not indeed by its own nature, but, as it were, accidentally through the disposition of mankind. First, it portends to the booksellers great disturbances, and tolerable gains; for almost every Theologus, Philosophtcua, Medicus, and Mathematics, or whoever else, having no laborious occupation intrusted to him, seeks his pleasure in studio, will make particular remarksupon it, and will wish to bring these remarks to the light. Just so will others, learned and unlearned, wish to know its meaning, and they will buy the authors who profess to tell them. I mention these things merely by way of example, because, although thus much can be easily predicted without great skill, yet may it happen just as easily, and in the same manner, that the vulgar, or whoever else is of easy faith, or it may be, crazy, may wish to exalt himself into a great prophet; or it may even happen that some powerful lord, who has good foundation and beginning of great dignities, will be cheered on by this phenomenon to venture on some new scheme, just as if God had set up this star in the darkness merely to enlighten them."
It would hardly be supposed, from the tenor of this last passage, that the writer of it was not a determined enemy to astrological predictions of every description. In 1602 he had published a disputation, not now easily met with, "On the Principles of Astrology," in which it seems that he treated the professed astrologers with great severity. The essence of this book is probably contained in the second" treatise on the new star, which he published in 1606*. In this volume he inveighs repeatedly against the vanity and worthlessness of ordinary astrology, declaring at the same time, that the professors of that art know that this judgment is pronounced by one well acquainted with its principles. "For if the vulgar are to pronounce who is the best astrologer, my reputation is known to be of the highest order; if they prefer the judgment of the learned, they are already condemned. Whether they stand with me in the eyes of the populace, or I fall with them before the learned, in both cases I am in their ranks; I am on a level with them; I cannot be renounced."
* The copy of this work in the British Museum is Kepler's presentation copy to our James I. On the blank leaf, opposite the title page, is the following inscription, apparently in the author's handwriting :—" Begi philosophanti, philosophus serviens, Platoni Diogenes, Brllsnnias tenenU, Pragte atipem mendicaus ab Alexandre, e dolio conductitio, hoc suum philosophcma misit et commendavit."
The theory which Kepler proposed to substitute is intimated shortly in the following passage: '* I maintain that the colours and aspects, and conjunctions of the planets, are impressed on the natures or faculties of sublunary things, and when they occur, that these are excited as well in forming as in moving the body over whose motion they preside. Now let no one conceive a prejudice that I am anxiously seeking to mend the deplorable and hopeless cause of astrology by far-fetched subtilties and miserable quibbling. I do not value it sufficiently, nor have I ever shunned having astrologers for my enemies. But a most unfailing experience (as far as can be hoped in natural phenomena) of the excitement of sublunary natures by the conjunctions and aspects of the planets, has instructed and compelled my unwilling belief."
After exhausting other topics suggested by this new star, he examines the different opinions on the cause of its appearance. Among others he mentions the Epicurean notion, that it was a fortuitous concourse of atoms, whose appearance in this form was merely one of the infinite number of ways in which, since the beginning of time, they have been combined. Having descanted for some time on this opinion, and declared himself altogether hostile toit.Keplerproceeds as follows:—" When I was ayouth, with plenty of idle time on my hands, I was much taken with the vanity, of which some grown men are not ashamed, of making anagrams, by transposing the letters of my name, written in Greek, so as to make another sentence: out of Uixnm KirxUfot 1 made Iip.w <2th>.«*; in Latin, out of Joannes Keplerus came Serpens in akulecrf. But not being satisfied with the meaning of these words, and being unable to make another, I trusted the thing to chance, and taking out of a pack of playing cards as many as there were letters in the name, I wrote one upon each, and then began to shuffle them, and at each shuffle to read them in the order they came, to see if any meaning came of it. Now, may all the Epicurean gods and goddesses confound
this same chance, which, although I spent a good deal of time over it, never showed me anything like sense even from a distance *. So I gave up my cards to the Epicurean eternity,to be carried away into infinity, and, it is said, they are still flying about there, in the utmost confusion among the atoms, and have never yet come to any meaning. I will tell these disputants, my opponents, not my own opinion, but my wife's. Yesterday, when weary with writing, and my mind quite dusty with considering these atoms, I was called to supper, and a salad I had asked for was set before me. It seems then, said I aloud, that if pewter dishes, leaves of lettuce, grains of salt, drops of water, vinegar, and oil, and slices of egg, had been flying about in the air from all eternity, it might at last happen by chance that there would come a salad. Yes, says my wife, but not so nice and well dressed as this of mine is."
Kepler publishes his Supplement to
ViteUion—Theory of Refraction, During several years Kepler remained, as he himself forcibly expressed it, begging his bread from the emperor at Prague, and the splendour of his nominal income served only to increase his irritation, at the real neglect under which he nevertheless persevered in his labours. His family was increasing, and he had little wherewith to support them beyond the uncertain proceeds of his writings and nativities. His salary was charged partly on the states of Silesia, partly on the imperial treasury; but it was in vain that repeated orders were procured for payment of the arrears due to him. The resources of the empire were drained by the constant demands of an engrossing war, and Kepler had not sufficient influence to enforce his claims against those who thought even the smallest sum bestowed upon him ill spent, in fostering profitless speculations. In consequence of this niggardliness, Kepler was .forced to postpone the publication of the Rudolphine Tables, which he was engaged in constructing from his own and Tycho Brahe's observations, and applied himself to other works of a less costly description. Among these may be men
* The tapster of the Sirens. t A serpent in his sting.
* In one of his anonymous writings Kepler has anogrammatited his name, Joannes Kepler's, in a variety of other forms, probably selected from the luckiest of his shuffles :—" Kleopns Herenniut, Htlenor KapuenMt, llatpinut Knkclai, Ktinonet Puerila."