- Paperback: 135 pages
- Publisher: University of Chicago Press; 1 edition (April 15, 1989)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0226279030
- ISBN-13: 978-0226279039
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #119,723 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Sidereus Nuncius, or The Sidereal Messenger 1st Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I gave only four stars because the kindle edition, the one I purchased, is tremendously full of typos! At times it is so frequent and blatant that it gets annoying. The substance, however, makes it worth it. I just hope they will correct the typos for a new edition.
The book is essentially two essays: the original Galileo text (in translation) with his drawings, and interesting background and context material by Van Helden on Galileo, telescopes, and astronomy of the time. Galileo here is putting down on paper the record of his first few months of observing, so there's a fair amount of detail, some interesting and some not so interesting (like page after page showing the alignment of the four satellites of Jupiter), but with the addition of Van Helden's background material the result is nice little book.
One little tidbit of Galileo's that I enjoyed, which I have not seen elsewhere, was his simple explanation of how his observations of the moon's light/dark terminator allowed him to calculate the height of mountains on the moon. He got 4 miles, which with a little trigonometry anyone can check.