Sunday, 22 January 2012

Galileo Selected Writings

The book, Galileo, Selected Writings is a masterful new translation by William R, Shea and Mark Davie.

The book is not just a collection of the writings of a great man. Shea and Davie are able to put Galileo and his writings into the context of the times in which Galileo lived.

It touches on the financial problems that beset Galileo when, on the death of his father, he became the breadwinner and the man of the house. He had dowries to fund for his sisters and his mother to provide for. Problems which meant that Galileo needed to earn a goodly income to provide for his family.

Galileo made a substantial income by selling a geometrical and military compass of his own design, which is referenced within this book, together with information on his work to construct the best telescope in existence at that time.

The book also points out that Galileo did not quite use the Leaning Tower of Pisa in the way that is generally depicted to prove his theory of gravity.

The book contains a wide and deeply fascinating collection from a range of Galileo's writings. From letters to important figures of his day, including nobles and royalty, his observations on the Copernican Theory, details of his trial and his statement of abjuration.

It contains his Dialogue on the Two Chief World Systems (see above) A Sidereal Message and much more besides.

This book is not only a testament to the brilliance of Galileo it is an interesting thought-provoking  work.

It contains copious and highly useful notes, explanatory notes and a detailed and most helpful index.

It is an ideal book for the student and for those curious to learn more about Galileo.

It is available in paperback at £10.99 published by the Oxford University Press.

The ISBN is 978-0-19-958369-0.

It is, of course, available from the That's Book bookshop, which is powered by Amazon.

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