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Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences (Dover Books on Physics) Paperback – June 1, 1954

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Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences (Dover Books on Physics) + The Principia (Great Minds) + On the Revolutions of Heavenly Spheres (Great Minds Series)
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Product Details

  • Series: Dover Books on Physics
  • Paperback: 350 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications (June 1, 1954)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1275100570
  • ISBN-13: 978-1275100572
  • ASIN: 0486600998
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,827,519 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Italian --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Stephen Hawking’s ability to make science understandable and compelling to a lay audience was established with the publication of his first book, A Brief History of Time, which has sold nearly 10 million copies in 40 languages. Hawking has authored or participated in the creation of numerous other popular science books, including On the Shoulders of Giants and The Illustrated On the Shoulders of Giants.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Galileo Galilei had seriously considered the priesthood as a young man, at his father's urging he instead enrolled at the University of Pisa for a medical degree.[20] In 1581, when he was studying medicine, he noticed a swinging chandelier, which air currents shifted about to swing in larger and smaller arcs. It seemed, by comparison with his heartbeat, that the chandelier took the same amount of time to swing back and forth, no matter how far it was swinging. When he returned home, he set up two pendulums of equal length and swung one with a large sweep and the other with a small sweep and found that they kept time together. It was not until Christiaan Huygens almost one hundred years later, however, that the tautochrone nature of a swinging pendulum was used to create an accurate timepiece.[21] To this point, he had deliberately been kept away from mathematics (since a physician earned so much more than a mathematician), but upon accidentally attending a lecture on geometry, he talked his reluctant father into letting him study mathematics and natural philosophy instead.[21] He created a thermoscope (forerunner of the thermometer) and in 1586 published a small book on the design of a hydrostatic balance he had invented (which first brought him to the attention of the scholarly world). Galileo also studied disegno, a term encompassing fine art, and in 1588 attained an instructor position in the Accademia delle Arti del Disegno in Florence, teaching perspective and chiaroscuro. Being inspired by the artistic tradition of the city and the works of the Renaissance artists, Galileo acquired an aesthetic mentality. While a young teacher at the Accademia, he began a lifelong friendship with the Florentine painter Cigoli, who included Galileo's lunar observations in one of his paintings.[22][23]

In 1589, he was appointed to the chair of mathematics in Pisa. In 1591 his father died and he was entrusted with the care of his younger brother Michelagnolo. In 1592, he moved to the University of Padua, teaching geometry, mechanics, and astronomy until 1610.[24] During this period Galileo made significant discoveries in both pure fundamental science (for example, kinematics of motion and astronomy) as well as practical applied science (for example, strength of materials and improvement of the telescope). His multiple interests included the study of astrology, which at the time was a discipline tied to the studies of mathematics and astronomy.[25]

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jesse Rouse on October 22, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent book, but I don't think it's quite what the publisher thought it was. The previous reviewer is right in saying that this book does not support Copernicus' heliocentricism in any way. It is a discussion of motion, not astronomy. I would agree with the previous review in saying that the publishers probably meant to publish Dialogues Concerning Two Chief World Systems, which does in fact discuss heliocentricism and support Copernicus. How one manages to publish the wrong book I have no idea. Did no one read this before they published it? And how on earth did Stephen Hawking not notice either and write about the wrong book?

Well, it's a good book anyway, just not what they say it is. I recommend reading it if you want to understand the developments of science (esp. motion and mechanics), but if you want to learn about the Copernican Revolution and Galileo's conflict with the church, then the book you are looking for is Dialogues Concerning Two Chief World Systems. I would also recomment Galileo's Daughter as an amazing biography of Galileo based around a correspondence between him and his daughter.

Overall grade: A for the book, F for the publisher's description.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Edmund Cooper on September 5, 2008
Format: Paperback
One of the foundational works of modern science, the text speaks for itself in its lucidity and its grounding in method. I review it to address a criticism leveled at this book by the reviewers below.

These reviewers have erroneously perceived that these texts were mistakenly published, and that the original intent of the publisher was to present Galileo's original papers on heliocentrism and Copernicus, "Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World systems: Ptolemaic and Copernican". As the texts herein are Galileo's works on accelerated motion, the conclusion is drawn that a major mistake was made.

I believe this perception is based on marketing that associates the series with Copernicus' discoveries in particular.

The fact is that this book is part of a series, the arc of which is to present the current model of the physical world from Copernicus' discovery of the heliocentric solar system to Einstein's revelation that space and time are warped or displaced by mass and energy. Reviewers mistakenly believed that this Galilean text was intended to stand in support of Copernicus' discovery. In fact, this text is meant to show the development of the laws of motion, and is merely part of the overall series. Hawking's introduction recognizes this correctly, in contradiction to the misunderstanding of the reviewers below.

Those interested in the origins of modern science, the history of science, physics, or intellectual history may well wish to read through this gem.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By F. Ramos on March 25, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There actually is confusion over this title. For one this is not the work where Galileo defends Copernicus (Heliocentrism) where the sun is the center of the universe or the solar system. That work is called "Dialogues Concerning Two Chief World Systems" (1632).

This work, "Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences" (1638), is about Galileo's experiments in bodies and motion.

The publisher is not wrong at all in calling this work the given title of "..Two New Sciences". If anything it is Galileo's and his original Publisher's fault for naming both works in such a similar fashion: "Dialogues Concerning Two....." The biggest difference is in the last words of the title.

For those concerned with Copernican/Aristarchus of Samos vs Aristotle/Ptolemaic dialogues (sun vs earth as the center of the universe/solar system) for which Galileo is known for please read Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems (Modern Library Science)

For those interested in Galileo's physics of bodies and motion and the book which he said, "contain results which I consider the most important of all my studies" then "Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences" is the correct one.

For a general sample of many of Galileo's works and related documents from his "controversy" from those who did the trials on Galileo, please read : The Essential Galileo. Look also at Galileo's
...Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By James B. Nance on December 8, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Galileo's "Dialogue Concerning Two New Sciences" covers the basics of what is today called classical mechanics. His main topics are the cohesion and strength of materials, uniform and uniformly accelerated motion, and projectile motion. But I also appreciate Galileo's tangents: his thoughts about infinity, the speed of light, vibrations, music, and his bouncing up against the concepts of Calculus and what would be known as Newton's Laws of Motion. The "dialogue" style works well at first, but as the book progresses he nearly abandons this as apparently unworkable, and just gives proof after proof, many of which are awkward and difficult to follow (though part of my pleasure in reading it is solving those proofs that Galileo leaves out). Galileo is clearly a genius -- he doesn't get everything right, but given what he had to go on it is amazing what he was able to figure out.
This book should be read by every serious student and teacher of Physics and Engineering.
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