The Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza houses fabulous collections of five centuries worth of scientific collections, which were started by Cosimo I (1519-1574) of the Medici family. These collections, which encompass everything to do with the origins and development of scientific, mathematic, astronomy, meteorology and mechanical instruments are priceless. The Tribune to the great scientist Galileo Galilei was built in 1841, and includes a statue of Galileo, frescoes and illustrations of his most important discoveries and instruments. In 1927, the Istituto di Storia delle Scienza was founded, with the goal of collecting, cataloging and restoring the vast scientific heritage available. Then in 1930, the University of Florence opened the permanent exhibition of the Istituto to the public in the Palazzo Castellani. Unfortunately, some pieces of the collection were destroyed during WWII and then again some serious damage occurred in the flood of 1966, but thanks to international solidarity and the efforts of Maria Luisa Righini Bonelli, then-director of the Museum, the restoration of the instruments was quickly carried out and the museum was reopened.
Today the Institute also offers a research center, specialized library rich in antique texts, modern editions and digital acquisitions, a multimedia laboratory for the development of the instrument holdings, a photographic laboratory and a restoration laboratory.
Address: Piazza dei Giudici 1, 50122 Firenze, Italy
Open hours: 9:30 am - 6:00 pm
Phone: +39 055 265311
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