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Mechanics and Cosmology

Florence, 25 - 27 November 2004

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International workshop organized in the framework of the ESF Programme “From Natural Philosophy to Science”

One of the central elements of the transformation of natural philosophy into science is what has been called the "mechanization of the world picture". This mechanization was preceded by the emergence of mechanics, defined by the end of the 17th century as the science of machines as well as the science of motion.

The second international workshop of the ESF Programme Team 1 is devoted to the role that the new heliocentric astronomy has played in the emergence of classical mechanics and, more generally, to the relationship between celestial and physical physics from the mid-13th century to the end of the 17th century.

As it is well known, the group of “moderns”, who defended heliocentrism, produced a rich variety of often contrasting proposals concerning these topics. The main point of the workshop being to understand these various and contrasting proposals, we should not only identify the various concepts of motion, speed, force and gravity proposed by various personalities, but relate them to their other preoccupations, be they scientific or philosophical, and compare them to Medieval views on the same subjects.

European Science Foundation
Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza


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