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Galileo Galilei

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Portrait of Galileo Galilei by Justus Sustermans in 1636

Galileo Galilei was born in 1564 and died in 1642. He’s an Italian mathematician, physicist and philosopher.

His life[edit | edit source]

Galileo Galilei was born in 1564. He invented the telescope. He started to built the telescope in 1609, when he was informed by the French Joseph Baudouère. He wrote a book on March 12th 1610, the Sidereus Nuncius. Galileo was a pioneer of applied mathematics, physics and astronomy. Galileo never married and had all his children out of wedlock with Marina Gambia, whom he met on a trip to Venice. In 1638, he became definitely blind. Although he was going blind, he continued to write. The 8th of January in 1642, galileo died in Arcetri.

Studies[edit | edit source]

His father expected him to be a physician that’s why Galileo Galilei started medical studies. He studied at the university of Pisa but he stopped it because of his art teacher who convinced him to do mathematics.

Main work[edit | edit source]

He discovered stars that turn around Jupiter. He thought like Copernicus, that the Earth and the others planets turn around the sun and not the sun turn around the Earth like Aristotle said. Galileo wrote a book which is called The celestial Messenger. In 1592, Galileo became mathematic teacher at the University of Padoue where he stayed 18 years. But on 1616 the Copernicus system was declared heretic, so Galileo who agreed with Copernicus can’t continue to teach mathematics and his ideas. In 1632, he was again condemned for heresy after his book Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World System’s was published. This set out the arguments for and against the Copernican theory in the form of a discussion between two men. He was sentenced to life imprisonment, later reduced to permanent house arrest at his villa in Arcetri, south of Florence. He was also forced to publicly withdraw his support for Copernican theory.

Anecdotes[edit | edit source]

  1. He stops his medical studies because of his art teacher who convince him to do mathematics.
  2. Galileo was said to have dropped two cannonballs of different masses from the leaning tower of Pisa to demonstrate that their speed of descent was independent of their mass.
  3. While many remember Galileo’s confrontation with the church, many forget that both his daughters joined the convent of San Matteo in Arcetri and remained there for the rest of their lives. Galileo even went as far as help out in the convent, repairing windows and making sure that the convent clock was in order.
  4. Galileo was an accomplished lutenist, learning from his father, Vincenzo Galilei, who was a composer and music theorist.
  5. After denied his scientist conviction Galileo would say “And yet it moves”
  6. In the last year of his life, when he was totally blind, Galileo designed an escapement mechanism for a pendulum clock called Galileo’s escapement.
  7. The middle finger of Galileo’s right hand has been exhibited at the Museo Galileo in Florence, Italy.

Sources[edit | edit source]

Saturn.jpg Astronomy Portal — All articles about astronomy!
Arithmetic symbols.svg Mathematics Portal — All articles about mathematics.