Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Galileo's fingers and tooth found

Was that any way to treat a genius? Back in 1737, Galileo Galilei's admirers removed three fingers, a vertebra and a tooth from the astronomer's body when his corpse was being moved to a new crypt.

The vertebra and one of the fingers were recovered soon afterward, but the whereabouts of the tooth and the other two fingers were secrecy. Recently, however, the relics turned up in a container that was auctioned off to a private collector. Now the Galilean body parts, including the finger shown at right, will be put on display at the Museum of the History of Science in Florence.