Loeb Danish Ardt Collection - page 207

garden with gates and service buildings, including a printing press and a paper mill. A short distance from
this, Brahe built the partly subterranean observatory Stjerneborg (Stellaeburgum) for his many instru-
ments. In this research center he worked with his pupils and assistants in constant contact with foreign sci-
entists. On several occasions he received visits from royalty. In
James VI of Scotland (later painted by
Wilhelm Marstrand among others) came there, and in
the new young king, Christian IV.
Meanwhile, Brahe fell into disgrace, allegedly for mistreating his peasants and for disrespect for the new
king and he left Denmark in
. The buildings on Hven started to disintegrate and by about
had vir-
tually disappeared. Brahe went to Prague, where Emperor Rudolf II supported his activities from
Brahe’s death in
. In Prague, he collaborated with the astronomer Johannes Kepler (
), who pre-
served Brahe’s instruments and written observations, materials that represented a crucial contribution to
the younger scientist’s epoch-making scientific discoveries. Brahe died when he was only
, and it was
demonstrated a few years ago that his death was caused by mercury poisoning. On the basis of this, in
two authors put forward the theory that he was murdered by Kepler.
Although Brahe still believed that Earth was the center of the universe, his observations and publica-
tions had lasting value and ensured him a prominent place in the history of science, so there was every rea-
son to memorialize him in Denmark’s newmuseum of national history. This Heinrich Hansen did with the
painting of Brahe’s splendid house, where we see Frederik II’s queen, Sophie, visiting him in
in the
company of the historian Anders Sørensen Vedel. Tycho Brahe’s buildings on Hven are today marked out
on the ground, and part of the garden has been reconstructed.
Brahe was given a freehold estate in land.
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