The Church -...

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The Church’s benevolent stance toward science changed abruptly when astronomers  such as  Galileo Galilei  (1564–1642) and  Johannes Kepler  (1571–1630) started  questioning the ancient teachings of Aristotle and other accepted “truths.” Galileo’s work  in the fields of physics and inertia was groundbreaking, while Kepler’s laws of planetary  motion revealed, among other things, that the planets moved in elliptical orbits. Galileo  especially encountered significant resistance from the Church for his support of the  theories of Polish astronomer  Nicolaus Copernicus  (1473–1543), who had stated that  the sun, not the earth, was the center of the solar system—not vice versa, as Church  teaching had always maintained. Though up against considerable Church opposition, science moved into the spotlight in  the late 1500s and early 1600s. Galileo had long said that 
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This note was uploaded on 12/12/2011 for the course HIST 1320 taught by Professor Murphy during the Fall '08 term at Texas State.

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