THE LIFE OF GALILEO

Born in Pisa in 1564 of a Florentine father Galileo studied medicine at the university there. Showing little interest in that discipline, he abandoned it for the study of physics and mathematics. In 1585 he returned to his family without obtaining any academic qualifications. Yet, he gained the esteem of the greatest mathematicians of his day, Winning the post of mathematics lecturwe at the University of Pisa.

After his father’s death, economic difficulties forced Galileo to move to Padua, where he was appointed toa more lucrative position, the chair of mathematics in that city’s university.

During his 18 years in Padua, three children were born to Galileo and his mistress, a young Venetian woman. In 1610 he returned to Florence, where he obtained a better economic situation enabling him to dedicate more time to research—but at the expense of the freedom he had enjoyed in the territory of the Venetian Republic.

The grand duke of Tuscany appointed him “first philosopher and mathematician.” Galileo died in Florence in 1642, while living under house arrest as a result of his condemnation by the Inquisition.

From the book
The Library of Original Sources

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