Galilei Galileo and his telescopes , 1610-1635.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A composite photograph showing two replica telescopes with a vignette of the head of Galileo from a portrait painted in 1635 by Guido Sustermans. These two telescopes are replicas of ones made by Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) after he learnt of the invention of the telescope in 1608. They magnify only 14 and 21 times (shorter and longer telescopes respectively) yet give a very restricted field of view. As a result Galileo was only able to view about a third of the Moon through his telescopes. However, despite these limitations, Galileo published 'Sidereus Nuncius' ('The Starry Mesenger') in 1610, which describes the celestial sights he saw with his new telescope. These included craters on the Moon, the phases of Venus and the moons of Jupiter.