(Greek: kosmos, world; gignomai, become)
The science concerning the origin of our world.
That the world was created out of nothing by God's Omnipotence, is both a dogma of faith and an unassailable conclusion of reason.
This part of the origin of the world is today generally discussed in cosmology, a branch of philosophy.
Cosmogony rather refers to the evolution of the world after its creation.
The ancients thought that ever since the 6th day of creation the world remained substantially the same.
Modern astronomy and geology assure us of the contrary.
This naturally led to two questions:
During the last century the so-called nebular theory of Kant and Laplace was generally accepted by scientists; but owing to its manifold shortcomings, it is generally abandoned nowadays in favor of other theories.
Any theory of cosmogony must, of course, start from the assured findings of cosmography, a description of the universe (present and past) and of the laws governing its changes.
Various modern sciences are engaged in making this description more and more accurate, e.g., geography, geology, paleontology astronomy, and astrophysics.
Notable contributions to the science have been made by the following Catholic scientists:
- In what state was the world first created?
- How did the world come to its present state?
- Joachim Barvande
- Nicolaus Copernicus
- Armand David
- Andre Dumont
- Galileo Galilei
- Etienne Geoffrey Saint-Hilaire
- D'Omalius D'Halloy
- J. B. P. A. Lamarck
- Auguste De Lapparent
- Karl August Lossen
- Albertus Magnus
- Charles Saint Claire-Deville
- Heinrich Scherer, S.J.
- Nicolaus Steno
- Wilhelm Heinrich Waägen
- Martin Waldseemiiller
New Catholic Dictionary