Galileo, Galilei (1564-1642)

Astronomer, mathematician and physicist he dwelt, not on the useless question, why do things happen? but, how do things happen?

1581 Galileo uses his pulse to time the swinging of the lamps in the cathedral at Pisa. He concludes that the time for a lamp to swing does not depend on the angle through which it swings. This observation eventually leads to the development of pendulum clocks.

1592 Galileo develops a type of thermometer based on air.

1607 Thermometer invented by Galileo.

1609 Galileo hears of Lippershey's telescope and builds his own version. He eventually achieves a magnification of about 30x.

1610 Jupiter's satellites discovered by Galileo.

1611 Galileo, Thomas Harriot, Johannes Fabricius and Christoph Scheiner all claim to have seen sunspots on the surface of the Sun. Galileo says he first saw them three years earlier but did not publish anything, thinking that they were the planet Mercury passing in front of the Sun.

1616 Galileo called to Rome and ordered to stop supporting the Copernican theory.

1633 The Inquisition denounced Galileo.

1638 Galileo published "Discourses Concerning Two New Sciences", summarizing the principles of mechanics in which he discusses the laws of motion and friction, updating and correcting the ideas of Aristotle. Although Aristotle's ideas date from the 4th century BC, they had survived unchallenged until this time.

1641 Galileo's son designs a pendulum clock using his father's ideas.
Famous Quotes:
"You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself."

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forego their use."

See also: Borelli, Giovanni.

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Subjects: Famous Scientists & Engineers Mathematics Physics