|Galilei, Galileo Dialogues on two world systems 1661, tr. Salusbury, Thomas|
circularly along with the vertigenous diurnal revolution is abso
lutely natural: against which he objecteth, saying, that according
to these mens opinion; Si tota terra, unà cum aquâ in nihilum
redigeretur, nulla grando aut pluvia è nube decideret, sed natu
raliter tantùm circumferetur, neque ignis ullus, aut igneum ascen
deret, cùm illorum non improbabili sententià ignis nullus sit suprà.
[Which I translate to this sense:] If the whole Earth, together
with the Water were reduced into nothing, no hail or rain would
fall from the clouds, but would be onely naturally carried round;
neither any fire or fiery thing would ascend, seeing to these that men
it is no improbable opinion that there is no fire above.
SALV. The providence of this Philosopher is admirable, and
worthy of great applause, for he is not content to provide for
things that might happen, the course of Nature continuing, but
will shew hic care in what may follow from those things that he
very well knows shall never come to pass. I will grant him there
fore, (that I may get som pretty passages out of him) that if the
Earth and Water should be reduced to nothing, there would be no
more hails or rains, nor would igneal matters ascend any longer
upwards, but would continually turn round: what will follow?
what will the Philosopher say then?
SIMP. The objection is in the words which immediately fol
low; here they are: Quibus tamen experientia & ratio adver
satur. Which nevertheless (saith he) is contrary to experience and
SALV. Now I must yield, seeing he hath so great an advan
tage of me as experience, of which I am unprovided. For as yet
I never had the fortune to see the Terrestrial Globe and the ele
ment of Water turn'd to nothing, so as to have been able to ob
serve what the hail and water did in that little Chaos. But he
perhaps tells us for our instruction what they did.
SIMP. No, he doth not.
SALV. I would give any thing to change a word or two with
this person, to ask him, whether when this Globe vanished, it car
ried away with it the common centre of gravity, as I believe it did;
in which case, I think that the hail and water would remain insen
sate and stupid amongst the clouds, without knowing what to do
with themselves. It might be also, that attracted by that great
void Vacuum, left by the Earths absenting, all the ambients would
be rarified, and particularly, the air, which is extreme easily drawn,
and would run thither with very great haste to fill it up. And
perhaps the more solid and material bodies, as birds, (for there
would in all probability be many of them scattered up and down
in the air) would retire more towards the centre of the great va
cant sphere; (for it seemeth very reasonable, that substances that