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Galileo's fifth lumbar vertebra in his showcase with the original scroll and sigillum (on the left). Close up of the Galileo fifth lumbar vertebra (on the right). 

Galileo's fifth lumbar vertebra in his showcase with the original scroll and sigillum (on the left). Close up of the Galileo fifth lumbar vertebra (on the right). 

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Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) complained of several disorders during his life, the most important of which were chronic arthritic pains and bilateral blindness. These symptoms might result from an immune rheumatic disease, namely reactive arthritis (urethritis, uveitis, arthritis), when Galileo started suffering with an episode of fever in June 1593....

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... several transfers, Galileo's fifth lumbar vertebra was finally donated to the University of Padua by Domenico Thiene (1767-1844) on August 2nd 1823 ( Zampieri et al., 2013). The Rector of Padua University, Antonio Meneghelli (1765-1844), verified by a calligraphic investigation that the handwriting of the scroll at- tached to the vertebra (Figure 1) was originally made by its first holder, Antonio Cocchi, where was written: ...

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... Galileo was confined to his house in Arcetri, not so far from the cloister where his daughter Virginia (1600-1634) (Sister Maria Celeste) was living and where she died prematurely in 1634. 18 In 1637 Galileo became blind bilaterally (Figure 13), most probably as a final complication of a long-standing reactive arthritis, [19][20][21] and was assisted by his pupils Vincenzo Viviani (1622-1703) and Evangelista Torricelli (1608-1647). ...
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[first paragraph of article]Galileo Galilei (1564–1642), professor of mathematics at the University of Padua from 1592 to 1610, was a pillar in the history of our University and a symbol of freedom for research and teaching, well stated in the university motto ‘‘Universa Universis Patavina Libertas’’ (Total freedom in Padua, open to all the world). He invented the experimental method, based on evidence and calculation (‘‘science is measure’’) and was able, by using the telescope, to confirm the Copernican heliocentric theory, a challenge to the Bible. Bertrand Russell (1872–1970), in his book ‘‘The Problems of Philosophy’’ stated: ‘‘Almost everything that distinguishes modern world from earlier centuries is attributable to science, which achieved the most spectacular triumphs in the seventeenth century. Together with Harvey, Newton and Keplero, Galileo was a protagonist of this scientific revolution in the late Renaissance’’.