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Type of Item
The Ash Wednesday Supper
La cena de le Ceneri (The Ash Wednesday supper), the first of Giordano Bruno’s six Italian philosophical dialogues, was first published in London in 1584. The title page indicates neither the place of publication nor the publisher, but scholars agree that the book was printed at the London shop of John Charlewood. The work is dedicated to the French ambassador to the English court, Michel de Castelnau, sieur de la Mauvissière, who assisted Bruno after his arrival in London in 1583. The book is divided into five dialogues and ...
The Starry Messenger Showing Forth Great and Truly Wonderful Sights, as Well as Suggesting to Everyone, but Especially to Philosophers, Things to be Pondered
Galileo Galilei (1564–1642) was an Italian astronomer, mathematician, physicist, philosopher, and inventor. He revolutionized the sciences in the Western world by using mathematics and experimental evidence in the study of natural phenomena. Born in Pisa, Galileo studied in Pisa and Florence and in 1589 was appointed to the chair of mathematics at the University of Pisa. In 1591 he moved to the University of Padua, where he completed much of his most important scientific work. In late 1609, Galileo perfected a telescope of 30x magnification, with which he quickly ...
Works of Galileo Galilei, Part 3, Volume 5, Astronomy: Observations and Related Calculations about the Medicean Planets
This manuscript contains observations and calculations made by the Italian scientist and mathematician Galileo Galilei (1564–1642) on the so-called Medicean Planets—the satellites rotating around the planet Jupiter that Galileo discovered using the powerful telescope he invented and built in late 1609. Galileo made these notes in the course of his intense astronomical studies of early 1610, when he was in the last months of his tenure of the chair of mathematics at the University of Padua. These observations were then synthesized in his Sidereus Nuncius (Starry messenger), published ...
Works of Galileo Galilei, Part 3, Volume 15, Astronomy: The Assayer
Il saggiatore (The assayer) by Galileo Galilei (1564–1642) is the final and most significant work in the polemic regarding the characteristics of comets involving the Italian scientist and mathematician in the years 1618–23. Three comets appeared in the skies over Europe in 1618, giving rise to a debate about the nature of these celestial bodies. In 1619 Jesuit priest Orazio Grassi published a pseudonymous treatise on the comets. Grassi’s interpretation was then criticized in Discorso delle comete (Discourse on comets), a work published by Mario Guiducci but ...
Works of Galileo Galilei, Part 3, Volume 12, Astronomy: Discourse on the Comets Produced by him at the Florentine Academy During his Very Consulship
Three comets appeared in the skies over Europe in 1618, a phenomenal series of events that ignited a debate about the nature of these celestial bodies and the implications of their appearance for the Aristotelian theory that celestial bodies were unchanging and “incorruptible.” In 1619, the Jesuit astronomer and mathematician Orazio Grassi published under a pseudonym his treatise on the comets, in which he upheld the established view of celestial bodies as unchangeable and orbiting the Earth. Already under attack for his defense of the theories of Copernicus, Galileo Galilei ...
Works of Galileo Galilei, Part 4, Volume 2, Astronomy: Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems
This manuscript of 1632 contains an incomplete, autographical editing of Dialogo sopra i massimi sistemi del mondo (Dialogue concerning the two chief world systems) by the Italian scientist and mathematician Galileo Galilei (1564–1642). The text of this version, at the National Central Library in Florence, is very close to the definitive manuscript prepared for print (the complete autographical version of the text is in the Seminary Library in Padua). Published in 1632, the Dialogo had occupied Galileo for six years and is one of his most important works. It ...
Book of the Alphonsine Tables
A reflection of the knowledge of astronomy of the time, these tables were produced in Spain between 1263 and 1272 under the direction of Isaac ben Sid and Judah ben Moses Cohen. The Ptolemaic belief that the planets orbited the Earth was then the predominant cosmological system, and the heliocentric model of the solar system formulated by Copernicus, who personally studied and copied the tables, was still two centuries away. Known as Alfonsine tables after King Alfonso X of Castile (reigned 1252–84), the tables are a compilation of data ...