Scientists like Ptolemy and and Aristotle argue that the Earth is at the centre of the universe, and that the sun and stars are fix on spheres that rotate about the Earth.

However, other scientists like Copernicus and Kepler argue that in fact Earth rotates about the sun. Indeed in Copernicus' time, his model wasn't better than Ptolemy's in predicting the phenomena:

From Wikipedia:

However, for his contemporaries, the ideas presented by Copernicus were not markedly easier to use than the geocentric theory and did not produce more accurate predictions of planetary positions. Copernicus was aware of this and could not present any observational "proof", relying instead on arguments about what would be a more complete and elegant system.

What evidence to we have that the Earth rotates the sun?

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    When someone asks about scientific fact that is widely understood, our practice has been to confirm that they actually doubt it themselves. If you confirm that, in good faith, you doubt that the Earth revolves around the Sun, we can re-open this. Ptolemy's and Aristotle's and Aristotle's positions haven't been notable for 400-odd years; had they lived 1.5 millenia later, they would very likely have adopted different views. – Oddthinking Jul 3 '14 at 3:37
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    @Oddthinking - I was more making a philosophical point, which is that something that we are sure of now, at the time can be subject to a large amount of doubt. – dwjohnston Jul 3 '14 at 3:43
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    If you want to chat about philosophy, take it to chat or Philosophy Stack Exchange. – Oddthinking Jul 3 '14 at 3:49
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    @dwjohnston So that's a "no" on the good faith question, then. – Shadur Jul 3 '14 at 15:01
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    The question was "what is the evidence ..." Even if I know something to be true, I need to keep track of the specific experimental result that leads one to the conclusion. I know 'ether' does not exist because of the Michaelson-Morley experiment. What experimental result(s) give the clearest and most unambiguous evidence that the earth orbits the sun? Off hand, I don't know, but I would like to. – AgilePro Jul 6 '14 at 15:05

It's very evident that it the Earth has an orbit that circles the Sun thanks to the advancement in space travel, satellites and observatories.

From Nasa's website: In the modern era, Nicholas Copernicus is credited as setting the heliocentric model of the solar system on a firm footing. He wrote about this in 1543. In 1609 Johannes Kepler used the very accurate observations of Mars made by Tycho Brahe (in the 1590's) to demonstrate that the position of Mars could be accurately predicted using sun-centered solar system suggested by Copernicus.


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