Galileo Galilei: Bio, Inventions, Discoveries, Telescope & Honor

Galileo Galilei was a renowned Italian astronomer, physicist, engineer and also called the polymath of Pisa. This contribution was remarkable because he is called ‘Father of observational astronomy, modern physics, scientific method and of modern science.’

He studied physics and did an intense study in speed and velocity, gravity and free fall, inertia and worked in science and technology, found properties of pendulums and ‘hydrostatic balance.’ His works on observational astronomy, phases of Venus, the four largest satellites of Jupiter, and Saturn’s ring contributed a lot to the following generations.

Galileo Galilei the great scientist
Galileo Galilei the great scientist

His incredible inventions like the telescope and found satellite of Jupiter and a mountain on the moon. Calculated the law of freefall, inventing the microscope, research on pendula and clocks. His experiments are way too many in too many fields to remain a hero of modern science till now.

Like other philosophers and astronomers, not everyone praised him, but he came into the controversy over theology, astronomy, and philosophy. In 1633, The Roman Inquisition tried Galileo and convicted him Vehemently suspect of heresy, and sentenced him for imprisonment till notice.

Quick Facts of Galileo Galilei

Full Name

Galileo di Vincenzo Bonaiuti de’ Galilei

Nick Name

Galileo

Birth Date

February 15, 1564

Age of Death

77 years old

Horoscope

Aquarius

Birth Place

Pisa, Italy

Father’s Name

Vincenzo Galilei

Mother’s Name

Giulia Ammannatiand

Siblings

Michelagnolo Galilei

Giulia Galiei

Virginia Galilei

Benedetto Galilei

Invention

Telescope

Thermometer

Micrometer

Proportional Compass

Celatone

Children

Maria Celeste

Vincenzo Gamba

Religion

Catholic

Nationality

Italian

Ethnicity

White

Award

Father of Modern Science

Book

Sidereus Nuncius, The New Sciences, The Assayer

Education

University of Pisa

University of Bologna

Profession

Astronomer, Inventor, Philosopher, Mathematician, and Polymath

Marital Status

Never Married

Spouse

None

Net Worth

$20 Million

Early Life and Education

Galileo was born in Pisa, Italy. His mother was Giulia Ammannatiand father, a lutenist, composer, and music theorist, Vincenzo Galilei. He was the first child of his parents, and he had five siblings.

Galileo also learned music from his father, and the youngest brother Michelangelo was also a lutenist and a composer. He could not establish himself sound financial, so Galileo had to support him for his dowry share to their brother-in-law and musical career.

He studied in Pisa in one of the public schools. Later they moved to Florence to his father in 1572. He started to study priesthood but shifted his education to get a medical degree at the University of Pisa. But without getting a degree, he again changed his faculty to mathematics. His tutor was Ostilio Ricci, the mathematician of Tuscan Court.

In 1580, Galileo returned to Pisa and enrolled himself at the university to study medicine and philosophy living under the wing of MuzioTedaldi’s house as a guest. In 1585, he left the university and took a job as a teacher. He started experimenting on pendulum, levers, balls, and another object then.

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Inventions of Galileo Galilei

Galileo believed in shreds of evidence and proofs rather than to follow wisdom and traditions handed over from ancestors. He would not just follow the things because they had been there for centuries. For this obduracy, he ended up with lots of experiments and inventions.

Galileo Galilei inventing Telescope
Galileo Galilei inventing Telescope

He was able to mark the beginning of a fundamental change in the study of motion by his formulation of circular inertia, the law of falling bodies, and parabolic trajectories. Without having seen any of the examples of the Dutch instruments, Galileo was able to construct his famous telescope.

Galileo Thermometer

Galileo shifted his interest from the priesthood to medicines in 1581. Once a Chandelier stole his attention while swinging back and forth. He observed the arc of the swing to be equal with the help of his heartbeat. He tried to test the time with longer and shorter pendulum and yet noticed the time of swing back and forth are identical.

After attending the class geometry once, he requested his father to let him study mathematics; he then created a thermoscope in 1586 and published a book on hydrostatic balance. With the help of this foundation laid by Galileo, others later created advanced tools.

In 1593 he invented a rudimentary water thermoscope for the first time to measure the various temperatures. His invention now is called the Galileo thermometer though it is just the thermoscope.

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The Galileo thermometer is not the most accurate device to read temperature buy the wise invention. It’s the sealed multilayer glass containing liquid with five glass balls of different colors. Each ball has a metal hanged with temperature. The lowest floating ball gives the temperature.

Galileo Telescope

In 1609, the astronomer came across spyglass, which drew his attention. He started his experiment on a telescope on due course of polishing his lenses. He could observe that the lenses allow him to see things magnified eight to nine times.

Galileo Galilei Telescope
Galileo Galilei Telescope

With his experiments, he learned more about the universe. He found the mountains present in the moon and that Jupiter had its satellite. The changing phases of Venus made him know that the planets revolve around the sun, not the Earth, and he opposed the traditional idea of everything in heaven revolving around the Earth.

He discovered lots of stars present in the Milky Way. And he designed the first pendulum clock, Galileo’s escapement. But it took a long for the clock to be invented. Christian Huygens first invented the working pendulum clock.

Galileo Spacecraft

Galileo kept on contributing to modern science. Latter, scientists praised him as the father of modern science. Even some sources mentioned that none other have contributed to science as much as he did. He invented the first spacecraft to enter orbit around Jupiter.

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His intentions over the invention of the spacecraft were to study more on Jupiter. It helped to find out about the four satellites of Jupiter. They are Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto.

Legacy of Galileo Galilei

There are lots of stories about heaven and hell passed to us by our ancestors. Most of us accept those but not all will do so. Galileo was one of them who seek the reasoning. This is how he changed our life now, inventing a telescope that enabled us to know about the universe’s makeups.

Galileo Galilei wrote a book on detail, ‘The Starry Messenger,’ where he mentioned all his findings of the moon, Jupiter, Venus, and Milky Way.  His justifications were not accepted by the church at that time, but later about 300 years onward, they pardoned him and declared him correct.

Galileo Galilei: Awards and Honor

The ‘Galileo Medal Prize‘ was founded by INFN (Italy’s National Institute of Nuclear Physics) in 2018 in honor of Galileo Galilei. This award is dedicated to the researchers who successfully carry out outstanding research in theoretical physics.

He was honored by other astronomers like Stephen Hawking said his contribution was the highest in modern science than any other. Albert Einstein praised him as the father of modern science.

International Award of Galileo Galilei
International Award of Galileo Galilei

His contributions are too many that even different industries and people name their companies and products under his name to honor his great works. This became one of the ways to celebrate his discoveries. Camp Galileo, RCA pro-Galileo, Galileo High School are some of the examples.

Death of Galileo Galilei

The astronomer died on January 08th, 1642, in Arcetri, Italy, at 77. At a later stage, he lost his eyesight and became blind. Even before his death, out of fever and heart pulse, he was still receiving visitors. The Grand Duke of Tuscany, Ferdinando II, wanted to execute his funeral at Basicilia of Santa Crore and create his tomb beside his own father’s.

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Pope Urban VIII and his nephew, Cardinal Francesco Barberini, opposed this idea. Galilei was buried in a small room next to the novices’ chapel at the southern transept of the Basicilia to the sacristy.

Later his body was reburied when his three fingers and a tooth were removed. His three fingers are still at the Museo Galileo in Florence, Italy currently. He never gave up writing till his death seized his contributions.

Galileo Galilei Net Worth

Galileo, this day’s net worth is increasing significantly as research done by many sources. He is the ‘Father of Science‘ with a net worth of $20 Million.

Galileo Galilei Quotes

  • 1. The laws of nature are written by the hand of God in the language of mathematics.
  • 2. In the sciences, the authority of thousands of opinions is not worth as much as one tiny spark of reason in an individual man.
  • 3. To understand the Universe, you must understand the language in which it’s written, the language of Mathematics.
  • 4. I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with senses, reason, and intellect has intended us to forego their use.
  • 5. The sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent on it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the universe to do.
  • 6. There are those who reason well, but they are greatly outnumbered by those who reason badly.

FAQ

  1. Who was Galileo?

Galileo was a natural philosopher, mathematician, and astronomer who made fundamental contributions to the sciences of motion, astronomy, and the strength of materials.

  1. When was Galileo born?

Galileo was born on February 15, 1564, in Pisa, Italy.

  1. What did Galileo discover?

In 1610, Galileo discovered the four biggest moons of Jupiter also called as the Galilean moons and the rings of Saturn.

  1. What did Galileo Invent?

Galileo invented an early type of thermometer. Although he did not invent the telescope, he made significant improvements to it that enabled astronomical observation.

  1. How to read a Galileo thermometer?

Reading a Galileo thermometer is easy: simply read the temperature tag on the lowest floating bubble. The more spheres a thermometer has, the more accurate it will be.

6. How did Galileo die?

Galileo died after suffering from a fever and heart palpitations on January 8, 1642, in Arcetri, near Florence, Italy.

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