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Wilhelm IV of Landgrave Hesse-Kassel’s Observatory

Wilhelm IV of Landgrave Hesse-Kassel’s Observatory:
Wilhelm IV (1532-92), understood to be an important astronomer in his own right, commissioned what is thought to be the first astronomical observatory in Europe, which was celebrated by renowned scientists at the time such as Jost Bürgi (1552-1632), Tycho Brahe (1546-1601), and Johannes Kepler (1571-1630). In addition to the significant collection of astronomical equipment for navigating the skies, the Observatory formed an integral part of Wilhelm IV’s encyclopedic Kunstkammer, located in Kassel, Germany, now renowned for the perennial contemporary art exhibition, Documenta.

Image: Johannes Kepler’s model of the star system from “Mysterium Cosmographicum” (1596)

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