From John Freely, physicist, historian, and author of Aladdin’s Lamp, The Grand Turk, and The Lost Messiah comes Before Galileo: The Birth of Modern Science in Medieval Europe, a new book illuminating the history of science during the Dark Ages on sale this week!
According to many popular narratives of scientific history, modern science began with the heroic efforts of Galileo to gain acceptance for his revolutionary sun-centered world view of Copernicus. But where do his predecessors fit into the story? In reality, before Galileo’s time, an impressive succession of medieval scholars paved the way for the Scientific Revolution, laying the foundations for generations of theories and discoveries yet to come.
In Before Galileo, John Freely seeks to right this historical injustice by bringing to life Europe and Asia’s earliest minds and marvels. Leading readers on a journey through centuries of groundbreaking discoveries, Freely examines the pioneering research of the first European scientists, many of them monks whose influence ranged far beyond the walls of the monasteries where they studied and wrote and into the outer world as their ideas interacted with Byzantine and Islamic cultures, going beyond the philosophic and mathematical science of the works in the great Library of Alexandria to explore and enliven new worlds and peoples.
Offering a bold new perspective on scientific history, John Freely fills a notable gap in the story of modern science and places the great discoveries of the age in their rightful historical context. Discover the untold stories of revolutionary scholars, such as Ibn Sina and Gerard of Cremona, who helped convey Arab science to the Western world or Albertus Magnus, among the first to implement the modern scientific method as we know it today. With authoritative research, enlightening profiles, and illuminating connections, Before Galileo charts the early stages of the Scientific Revolution, shedding light on the Dark Ages and highlighting the Renaissance, to showcase the transmission and continuity of scientific knowledge from one generation to the next beginning more than a thousand years before Galileo was born.
Praise for BEFORE GALILEO:
“Revealing … Freely traces the transmission of ancient Greek philosophical and scientific works to the Islamic world.” – Kirkus Reviews
“Surprising … A detailed look at the lineage and transmission of scientific thought from the Greeks through the medieval era.” – Publishers Weekly