Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina of Tuscany. (). (abridged) by Galileo Galilei. To the Most Serene Grand Duchess Mother: Some years ago, as Your. In , Galileo wrote a letter to the Grand Duchess Christina of Tuscany in order to show how one could argue for the heliocentric system. “Contrary to the sense of the Bible and the intention of the holy Fathers they would have us altogether abandon reason and the evidence of.

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I would say here something that was heard from an ecclesiastic of the most eminent degree: Then we would indeed be seen to have contended not for the sense of divine Scripture, but for our own ideas by wanting something of ours to be the sense of Scripture when we should rather want the meaning of Scripture to be ours. But I wish to consider next whether this very event may not be understood more consistently with what we read in the Book of Joshua in terms of the Copernican system, adding a further observation recently pointed out by me in the body of the sun.

Before this could be done they would have to be taught how to make one mental faculty command another, and the inferior powers the superior, so that the imagination and the will might be forced to believe the opposite of what the intellect understands. From this I do not mean to infer that we need not have an extraordinary esteem for the passages of holy Scripture.

Hence they have had no trouble in finding men who would preach the damnability and heresy of the new doctrine from their very pulpits with unwonted confidence, thus doing impious and inconsiderate injury not only to that doctrine and its followers but to all mathematics and mathematicians in general.

Letter to Madame Christina of Lorraine, Grand Duchess of Tuscany

Matthew Pittenger marked it as to-read Dec 05, And to prohibit the whole science would be but to censure a hundred passages of holy Scripture which teach us that the glory and greatness of Almighty God are marvelously tne in all his works and divinely read in the open book of heaven.

And it would be necessary to prevent Venus being seen round at one time and forked at another, with very thin horns; as well as many other sensory observations which can never be reconciled with the Ptolemaic system in any way, but are very strong arguments for the Copernican.

Hence in expounding the Bible if one were always to confine oneself to the unadorned grammatical meaning, one might fall into error. Skye Nosbisch rated it it was amazing Mar 22, Tatum McConnell rated it liked it Sep 25, What is it christinx me whether heaven, like a sphere, surrounds the earth on all sides as a mass balanced in the center of the universe, or whether like a dish it merely covers and overcasts the earth?


Finally this opinion has been amplified and confirmed with many observations and demonstrations by Nicholas Copernicus. Let me remind Your Highness again of St.

Now the Bible, as has been remarked, admits in many places expositions that are remote from the signification of the words for reasons we have already given.

And to ban Copernicus now that his doctrine is daily reinforced by many new observations and by the learned applying themselves to the reading of his book, after this opinion has been allowed and tolerated for those many years during which it was less followed and gqlileo confirmed, would seem in my judgment to be a contravention of truth, and an attempt to hide and suppress her the more as she revealed herself the more clearly and plainly.

I should pay no more attention to them than to those who previously contradicted me—at whom I always laugh, being assured of the eventual outcome—were it gakileo that in their new calumnies and persecutions I perceive that they do not stop at proving grqnd more learned lettter I am a claim which I scarcely contestbut go so far as to cast against lerter imputations of crimes which must be, and are, grandd abhorrent to me than death itself.

And according to our ability let us make this evident, and let us keep the faith of our Lord, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom, so that we neither become seduced by the verbiage of chriistina philosophy nor frightened by the superstition of counterfeit religion.

His achievements include improvements to the telescope and consequent astronomical observations, and support for Copernicanism. Trivia About Letter to the Gra But let us again consider the degree to which necessary demonstrations and sense experiences ought to be respected in physical conclusions, and the authority they have enjoyed at the hands of holy and learned theologians. The letter includes a direct paragraph in which Galileo wrote:.

Can the Holy Ghost be asserted not to have intended teaching us something that does concern our salvation? Hence it is not sufficient to say that because all the Fathers admitted the stability of the earth, this is a matter of faith; one would have to gfand also that they had condemned the contrary opinion.

Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina – Wikipedia

Essays by Galileo Galilei essays. He was so forceful in his words, speaking bluntly, so there could be no mistaking the accusations he was making.


Especially in view of the fact that these things in no way concern the primary purpose of the sacred writings, which is the service of God and the salvation of souls—matters infinitely beyond the comprehension of the common people.

Augustine we find the following words: Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. But finally let us grant to these gentlemen even more than they demand; namely, let us admit that we must subscribe entirely to the opinion of wise theologians. Besides, I question the truth of the statement that the church commands us to hold as matters of faith all physical conclusions bearing the stamp of harmonious interpretation by all the Fathers.

Let us therefore render thanks to Almighty God, who in His beneficence protects us from this clangor by depriving such persons of all authority, reposing the power of consultation, decision, and decree on such important matters in the high wisdom and benevolence of most prudent.

If these men really believe themselves to have the true sense of a given passage, it necessarily follows that they believe they have in hand the absolute truth of the conclusion they intend to debate. I loved this letter!

Well, the passage of time has revealed to everyone the truths that I previously set forth; and, together with the truth of the facts, there has come to light the great difference in attitude between those who simply and dispassionately refused to admit the discoveries to be true, and those who combined with their incredulity some reckless passion of their own. The novelty of these things, as well as some consequences which followed from them in contradiction to the physical notions commonly held among academic philosophers, stirred up against me no small number of professors—as if I had placed these things in the sky with my own hands in order to upset nature and overturn the sciences.

Comments and Documents on special issues christkna Religion and Science. Websites on Science and Religion. In order to facilitate their designs, they seek so far as possible at least among the common people to make this opinion seem new and to belong to me alone. Hence even if the teh of heaven and the motion of the earth should be more than certain in the minds of the wise, it would still be necessary to assert the contrary for the preservation of belief among the all-too-numerous vulgar.