Nalyze the letter written by Galileo Galilei to the Grand Duchess Christina of Tuscany
In 1615, Galileo Galilei wrote a letter to the Grand Duchess Christina of Tuscany, the widow of Ferdinando I de Medici, the Grand Duke of Tuscany. The Grand Duke had appointed Galileo to the Univeristy of Pisa in 1588. Ferdinando I died in 1609 but Galileo kept close ties with the de Medici family. In 1610, for instance, he went to Florence to become philosopher and mathematican to Cosimo II de Medici, the son of Ferinando and Christina of Tuscany. The origins of this letter are somehwat obscure, but it appears that Galileo wrote it in response to a letter he had received from a former student the Benedictine monk Benedetto Castelli. In 1613 Castelli had apparently been attending a social occasion at the Medici palace when the question of the motion of the earth came up and sparked some discussion about religion and the heliocentric theory among the Grand Duchess and her guests. Castelli wrote a letter to Galileo describing the affair and Galileo responded. The response came in the form of the Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina of Tuscany. It was subsequently published and widely read.
For this essay, treat the Letter as a primary source and analyze it. The main questions are: What is Galileo up to? What is he trying to say? As you analyze the document, think about how Galileo differentiates between science and religion. What are the purposes of science and religion? What does Galileo think should be the proper relationship between science and religion? What is Galileos view of Truthand how it should be established? Does Galileo believe in God?