2. Spherical Earth - Who knew it first?
Our books teach us that it was Kepler, Copernicus, and Galileo. They all belong to 16th&17th century AD. What was ancient India's Knowledge in this regard? Indians knew this fact for ages, even from antient times.
Here are a few references to substantiate this fact...
The renowned Indian Astronomer Aryabhatta (476 AD) had said
- the earth is round from all sides
He had also accurately calculated the diameter of the Earth.
Another Indian Astronomer Varahamihira (6th century AD) in his text "Pancha Sidhanthika" said as under
The "spherical" earth that is made up of Pancha Bhuthas (five elements) is hanging in the space, studded by twinkling stars like an iron ball hanging in a cage.
Let us observe this Vedic mantra of Rigveda
There are many Vedic verses; many of them proclaim the spherical shape of the Earth.
Even today in most of the Indian languages the term "Geography" means BHUGOLA SASTRA. The very word "Bhugola" means spherical earth. This shows that ages ago Indian knew that earth was spherical in shape.