Directing his polemics against the pedantry of his time, Galileo, as his own popularizer, addressed his writings to contemporary laymen. His support of Copernican cosmology, against the Church's strong opposition, his development of a telescope, and his unorthodox opinions as a philosopher of science were the central concerns of his career and the subjects of four of his most important writings. Drake's introductory essay place them in their biographical and historical context.
About the Author
Galileo Galilei's Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems is one of the most important scientific treatises ever written. Using the dialogue form, a genre common in classical philosophical works, Galileo masterfully demonstrates the truth of the Copernican system over the Ptolemaic one, proving, for the first time, that the earth revolves around the sun.
Stillman Drake (1910–1993) was emeritus professor of the history of science at the University of Toronto. His many translations and scholarly works on Galileo include Galileo at Work and Cause, Experiment, and Science, both published by the University of Chicago Press.