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Christianity 400 Yrs Late: Vatican Honours Galileo

Discussion in 'Interfaith Dialogues' started by Archived_Member16, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. Archived_Member16

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    SPNer Thinker

    Jan 7, 2005
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    April 17, 2011

    400 yrs late: Vatican honours Galileo

    AP | Apr 17, 2011, 02.35am IST

    Four hundred years after Galileo Galilei first demonstrated his telescope to scholars on a Roman hilltop, the astronomer condemned by the Catholic Church was celebrated on the same spot with a multimedia art exhibit that, oddly enough, included an installation from the Vatican.

    Heliographs, astrolabes and other antique astrological instruments that belong to the Vatican Observatory stood alongside contemporary art inspired by Galileo and his science: rows of intensely hot, blindingly bright floodlights simulating the sun; a performance by a Tibetan musician playing a telescope-like horn.

    The event took place on Thursday night at the American Academy in Rome, a research center for the arts and humanities whose gardens lie on the exact spot where, on the night of April 14, 1611, Galileo showed off his telescope for the first time to the most important scholars of his time.

    Galileo made the first complete astronomical telescope and used it to gather evidence that the Earth revolved around the sun. Church teaching at the time had placed Earth at the center of the universe. The church denounced Galileo's theory as dangerous to the faith, but Galileo defied its warnings. Tried for heresy and forced to recant in 1633, he spent the rest of his life under house arrest.



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