Thursday, August 14, 2008

Galileo's Daughter

Galileo's Daughter by Dava Sobel

This is a biography of Galileo. Through letters sent to him by his eldest daughter, his life is chronicled. Galileo's 2 daughters were sent to a convent because of the circumstances of their birth. Unable to leave the convent the eldest developed a very close relationship with her father. She wrote and saw him very often.

The story tells of Galileo's poor health and of his experiments and mathematical discoveries. He was a intellect while being a very religious man. Galileo tried in various ways to present his and Kepler's findings about the universe and the earth revolving about the sun while still keeping his faith's laws. The Vatican finally had enough of this and tried him. The court machinations and the politics were interesting to read about. It is amazing the role the church used to have in scientific discoveries.

Interweaving the letters with the biography made the story seem more real and gave it a life itself.

First Line: "We are terribly saddened by the death of your cherished sister, our dear aunt; but our sorrow at losing her is as nothing compared to our concern for your sake, because your suffering will be all the greater."



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