1585 in science
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- August 8 – English explorer John Davis enters Cumberland Sound in Baffin Island in his quest for the Northwest Passage.
- John Blagrave publishes The Mathematical Jewel, showing the making and most excellent use of a singular instrument so called, in that it performeth with wonderful dexterity whatever is to be done either by quadrant, ship, circle, cylinder, ring, dial, horoscope, astrolabe, sphere, globe or any such like heretofore devised.
- Giordano Bruno uses Fabrizio Mordente "proportional eight-pointed compass" to refute Aristotle's hypothesis on the incommensurability of infinitesimals, thus confirming the existence of the "minimum" which lays the basis of his own atomic theory. Bruno publishes his proofs as Figuratio Aristotelici Physici auditus.
- Simon Stevin publishes De Thiende, introducing a form of decimal fraction.
- March 10 – Rembert Dodoens, Flemish physician and botanist (born 1517)
- Taqi al-Din Muhammad ibn Ma'ruf, Arab astronomer and inventor (born c. 1526)
- Ford, David Nash (2001). "John Blagrave (c. 1561–1611)". Royal Berkshire History. Retrieved 2011-02-27.
- Bruno, Giordano (1585), Figuratio Aristotelici Physici auditus