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Panek first considers Galileo, who "raised his new instrument toward the night sky and understood at once that there was more to see--and more to seeing--than meets the eye.... Unlike spectacles or magnifying lenses, the optic tube offered not just a distortion of what was already there, but more. It revealed evidence that was different from what the naked eye could see, evidence that wasn't otherwise there." Panek goes on to look at the, ahem, luminaries of observational astronomy--William Herschel, George Ellery Hale, Edwin Hubble--showing how faith in the telescope grew and our mental image of the universe expanded until "all the assumptions safely based on observation are gone." Panek's prose is vivid and beautiful, sustaining this (curiously) unillustrated book as it traces the astronomer's quest for light and dark, sight and belief. --Mary Ellen Curtin --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A great read. Highly recommend to anyone into astronomy and the history of the telescope!Published 10 months ago by Ronald Zincone Photography
If you've read "Longitude," by Dava Sobel, and liked it, you'll like Panek's book as well. "Longitude" is the story of the invention of a chronometer sufficiently accurate to... Read morePublished on March 9, 2006 by Duwayne Anderson
The key word in the subtitle is "Minds" as one soon learns. In the first half of the book, Panek describes how the telescope opened our eyes to the heavens and as the... Read morePublished on February 21, 2002 by Bobby Matherne