Today is my birthday and among all the possible mathematical posts that I can write I’ve decided to show Tycho Brahe’s tomb. I don’t know the reason but I feel good when I am in front of the tomb of one of the great scientifics! It’s like being with them and their works. I often read about their lifes and their tombs are another section of the stories which explain their fortune, jobs,…
Today Tycho Brahe has been the guest star in Prague. I had been here twice before but I hadn’t never visited the Church of Our Lady before Tyn where Brahe was buried.
The legend says that on October 13, 1601, Tycho Brahe attended a banquet where he drank a lot and he was so polite to leave the table to empty his bladder. So he became ill and suffered from fever, delirious and periods of unconsciousness until his death on the 24th October.
He was buried near the altar of Our Lady before Tyn where a marble monument was erected in 1604, the same year in which his wife Kirsten Jörgensdatter died and was buried next to him.
When the tomb was opened in 1901, the scientist thought that Brahe had been poissoned from the high level of mercury which they found in his hair. In 2010 the tomb was re-opened and new investigations demonstrated that this level of mercury wasn’t able to kill him so it’s impossible to know how Tycho Brahe died.
Thus, if you visit Prague you must go to this emblematic church of the city to see the tombstone and imagine how this great astronomer died. One thing more, Brahe had a silver prothesys in his nose because he was hurt in a duel when he was young but this interesting historical piece hadn’t been found.
Here you have a drawing by Josef Carmine of Our Lady before Tyn at the end of the 18th century:
Location: Church of Our Lady before Tyn (map)