1617 in science
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- Johannes Kepler begins to publish his Epitome astronomiæ Copernicanæ setting out his theory of elliptic orbits.
- James Gregory mentions an incomplete result of what is later known as Taylor's theorem.
- Napier’s Bones, a multiplication device invented by John Napier, is described in his Rabdologiæ, published in Edinburgh.
- Henry Briggs publishes Logarithmorum Chilias Prima, a modification of Napier's logarithms into common logarithms.
- The Worshipful Society of Apothecaries of London is granted a royal charter, separating it from the Grocers.
- January 29 – William Butler, Irish alchemist (at sea) (born c. 1534).
- February 6 – Prospero Alpini, Italian physician and botanist (born 1553).
- February 11 – Giovanni Antonio Magini, Italian astronomer (born 1555).
- April 4 – John Napier of Merchiston, mathematician (born 1550).
- May 7 – David Fabricius, Frisian astronomer (born 1564)