Galileo’s Eternal Salute

Galileo Galilei helped restore science to Europe with his telescopic exploration of the solar system and stars. The Holy Mother Church in Rome was confounded by his heliocentric beliefs that the Earth revolved around the Sun, which was contrary to geocentricism. His Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems attacked the ignorance of Pope Urban VIII’s Vatican. The Pope had him tried for heresy by the Inquisition. Galileo was found guilty and sentenced to house arrest for life. For an additional punishment the Holy See required his reading seven penitential psalms once a week in the presence of papal representatives.

Upon his death in 1642 the Grand Duke of Tuscany wished to bury the great astronomer in splendor. The Pope refused him and Galileo’s remains were stuck a small chamber of the Basilica of Santa Croce.

In 1737 his corpse was transported to better surroundings and during transportation his middle finger was snapped off for veneration.

Upright it says everything a heretic would want to say about the Church.

Which is ‘Fuck you.’

Now more than ever.

See it at the Florence History of Science Museum.

It’s there along with his thumb and tooth.

Like those of the Good Buddha.

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