Galileo Galilei

GALILEO GALILEI was born in Pisa on February 15, 1564, into a family of impoverished nobility. In 1581 he enrolled at the University of Pisa to study medicine, but later abandoned this for mathematics. Galileo was appointed chair of mathematics at Pisa, and remained in that post until 1591; later he moved to Padua, and finally to Florence.

In marked contrast with the established tradition of science, Galileo relied on experimentation rather than ab-stract theorizing about the operation of the physical uni-verse. The famous experiment conducted from the top of the leaning tower of Pisa demolished the Aristotelian dictum that objects fall with a velocity equal to their weight. Galileo's avowal of the Copernican theory of the solar system, which set the sun and not the earth at the center, put him at loggerheads with ecclesiastical authority. Galileo was denounced publicly by the clergy and his peers; following the publication of his Dialogue Concerning Two Chief World Read More chevron_right