On Saturday, 22 May Nicolaus Copernicus (or Mikołaj Kopernik in Polish) was re-buried in northern Poland 467 years after his death. The Polish astronomer was interred beneath the altar of Frombork Cathedral, the site of his original burial in 1543. However, while he was originally laid to rest in an unmarked grave, this time his remains will lie in an ornate black tomb adorned with a model of the solar system.
The search for the astronomer’s body began in 2004, and it was exhumed from his first grave in 2005. Using DNA testing, Copernicus’ remains were positively identified that year.
While originally his findings that the Earth revolves around the Sun had angered the Roman Catholic Church and labelled him a heretic, this time his body was blessed with holy water and put to rest in an elaborate ceremony in the cathedral. His ranking as a church canon has also been restored. The mass was led by the new Primate of Poland, Józef Kowalczyk.
See also: Copernicus Fetches Astronomical Sum