I have just listened to the BBC Radio 4 broadcast Great Lives “Galileo” and all I can say is that if I paid a licence fee in Britain then I would demand my money back. It wasn’t just awful it was a major traffic pile up in slow motion. The expert witness was not a historian of science but a physicist who very obviously didn’t have a clue. I can’t be bothered to excoriate the whole thing but one single quote should illuminate the level of historical knowledge of the so-called expert witness.
Toward the end of the programme he informed us that “by then Urban VIII had replaced Urban VII as Pope”! Maffeo Barberini did indeed become Pope in 1623 adopting the title Urban VIII but his predecessor was Gregory XV! Also the Pope who was in power in 1616 when Galileo first came into conflict with the Catholic Church was Paul V!
I rest my case.