It soon became clear that medicine was not Galileo's first love. Rather, the young scholar became intrigued by mathematics, and found inspiration in the form of Ostilio Ricci, a mathematician in the court of the Tuscan Grand Duke. Ricci, impressed by Galileo's curiosity, agreed to tutor him privately. From 1581 to 1585, Galileo continued to formally pursue a degree in medicine, while Ricci educated him in geometry and applied mathematics. These years were a formative period for the young man, and in 1583 he made his first famous discovery: that each swing of a pendulum, regardless of width, takes an equal amount of time to swing between the extremes of its arc. This suggested that pendulums could be used to mark small intervals of time, and professors at the
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