Plato and Kepler

kepler 5elements.jpg

Platonic Solids are named after Plato ( 427 - 347 B.C. ) because he wrote about regular polyhedra in his book ‘Timaeus’ and it was the oldest account about regular polyhedra. Since I have been interested in Platonic Solids, I read the book ( well, in Japanese translation.. ) and vaguely noticed the sentences about polyhedra and elements in nature. On my way to find those paragraphs, I started to learn about Plato’s thought of the world and human beings.

About 1800 years later, Johannes Kepler ( 1571 - 1630 ) made drawings to describe Platonic Solids and natural elements;

Tetrahedron / fire
Octahedron / air
Cube / earth
Icosahedron / water
Dodecahedron / universe

He had a concept of the universe consisted by imaginary 5 regular polyhedra and inscribed spheres. He made models of the theory and had contemplated it for long time.



 正4面体 / 火
 正8面体 / 空気
 立方体 / 地球
 正20面体 / 水
 正12面体 / 宇宙の容れ物


Tomoko Azumi