A skull from Frombork cathedral in Poland has been identified as that of revolutionary astronomer Copernicus.
Marie Allen, of Uppsala University, says DNA from the skull is a match for DNA from hairs found in books owned by Copernicus, whose book De revolutionibus orbium coelestium started the movement to viewing the sun – rather than the Earth – as the centre of the solar system.
“The two strands of hair found in the book have the same genome sequence as the tooth from the skull and a bone from Frombork,” she says (AFP).
Polish police have used the skull to create a reconstruction of how its owner might have looked. This, says AFP, “bore a striking resemblance to portraits of the young Copernicus”.
Polish tests ‘confirm Copernicus’ – BBC
16th-century skeleton identified as Copernicus – Guardian