Galileo Galilei And The Scientific Revolution

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When Renaissance - the great cultural movement started in Italy - swept through Europe, marking the beginning of the Early Modern Age, science experienced a rapid progress, just as fast as the development in art, philosophy and literature. During this accelerated period of scientific advancement, or the scientific revolution, an Italian scientist, mathematician and philosopher named Galileo Galilei is considered one of the first to pave the way towards the ‘revolution’. He was “born at Pisa in Tuscany, of which the chief city was Florence, on 15 February 1564, within a day or two of the death of that great figure of the Cinquecento, Michelangelo, and died in 1642, the year of the birth of Isaac Newton, the master mind of modern science”. During …show more content…
Though born in a noble family, his family collapsed at the time he was born, which lead to a harsh living. “Up to the age of twenty-five, …[he] had no regular income, circumstance which, as other young men have done, he found inconvenient.” He tried to solve this problem not by giving up his passion towards science and mathematics, but rather used his strength to make sufficient income. “Financial pressure motivated Galileo to design, build, and sell scientific instruments”, using his brilliant researches. In order to advertise and introduce his tools and make more money, “he wrote an instructional manual called Operations of the Geometric and Military Compass of Galileo Galilei”. Perhaps the greatest challenge Galileo faced as a scientist, however, was the inability to establish his researches in public. As an “...outstanding defender and developer of the Copernican system”, he was a scientist highly “...convinced of the correctness of the Copernican system, but had refrained from openly avowing this, settled down at Florence to continue his astronomical observations and his physical experiments”, for he knew that the rash publication of his argument will be more than enough to get him arrested for heresy. Galileo consistently observed the sky using his own telescopes, in order to find evidence that supports Copernicus’s heliocentric theory. In 1610, he …show more content…
He firmly believed that all natural laws, including motions, are provable with mathematics. He “established by measurements and calculations that the distance an object falls from a resting position increases as the square of the elapsed time.” His mathematical thinking also met with his creative imaginations, and he “found a way to describe the path of an object thrown off at an angle by imagining the motion to be made up of a vertical and a horizontal component” in 1608. But Galileo was not just obsessed with mathematics to prove natural laws : in fact, “he insisted upon and demonstrated the fundamental importance of experiment and observation, which was against the teaching of his time.” For instance, in his final book Discorsi e Dimostrazioni mathematiche intorno á due nuove scienze published in 1638, “a critical first step toward the development of a single set of natural laws for the entire universe”, he used experimental measurements to prove his mathematical equation for the acceleration of an object, in which the “distance increases in proportion to the square of the time.” Galileo’s use of experiments, observations and mathematics inspired later scientists, and became the basic step to approach almost all aspects of sciences today in a reasonable

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