Italian astronomer and physicist. Galileo discovered the importance of acceleration, and established the law of parabolic motion. He invented the refracting telescope and used it to make astronomical observations. He saw the mountains on the moon and observed that the Milky Way was made up of stars. He was condemned by the Inquisition for his belief in the Copernican system of planetary movement which states that the planets, including the Earth, move around the sun, rather than believing the Earth to be the fixed centre of the universe. In the statue Galileo holds two lenses, one in each hand. Caen stone statue by Alexander Munro.
- Oxford University Museum of Natural History