Hi, I'm Christina Hartman for About.com and today we're profiling Johannes Kepler, the mathematician and astronomer who discovered the laws of planetary motion in the 17th century.Johannes Kepler was born on December 27, 1571 in Weil der Stadt Germany. He had planned to become a minister, but while attending at the University of Tübingen, Kepler became interested in studying the stars and the planets.In 1596, when he was just 25 years old, Kepler published his first major work called the "Mysterium cosmographicum" -- the "Cosmic Mystery." In it were problems and ideas that Kepler would explore for the rest of his life about how the universe worked.In 1601, Archduke Ferdinand made Kepler the imperial mathematician of the Holy Roman Empire, which allowed him to engage in his most important and influential work.

Kepler published important works on mathematics; optics, geometry, and the effect of the moon on the earth's tides – one even determining the year of Jesus' birth. But it was solving the mystery of the planets for which he is remembered.Kepler's three laws of planetary motion that describe the orbiting motion of the planets and sun were published in 1609 and 1619. At the time they were considered radical. But today he is considered one of the principal contributors to the field of astronomy.

Kepler died in Regensburg, Germany, on November 15, 1630. Part of his epitaph read, "Skybound was the mind, earthbound the body rests."

Thanks for watching our short profile of Johannes Kepler, for more information go to About.com.

Kepler published important works on mathematics; optics, geometry, and the effect of the moon on the earth's tides – one even determining the year of Jesus' birth. But it was solving the mystery of the planets for which he is remembered.Kepler's three laws of planetary motion that describe the orbiting motion of the planets and sun were published in 1609 and 1619. At the time they were considered radical. But today he is considered one of the principal contributors to the field of astronomy.

Kepler died in Regensburg, Germany, on November 15, 1630. Part of his epitaph read, "Skybound was the mind, earthbound the body rests."

Thanks for watching our short profile of Johannes Kepler, for more information go to About.com.

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