Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers

2014 Edition
| Editors: Thomas Hockey, Virginia Trimble, Thomas R. Williams, Katherine Bracher, Richard A. Jarrell, Jordan D. MarchéII, JoAnn Palmeri, Daniel W. E. Green

Campani, Giuseppe

  • Marco MuraraEmail author
Reference work entry

BornCastel San Felice, (Umbria, Italy), 1635

DiedRome, (Italy), 28 July 1715

Giuseppe Campani was one of Europe’s foremost telescope makers and opticians in the seventeenth century. Born in a village near Spoleto, he came from a peasant family and had no university education. He soon went to Rome with his two brothers, one of whom was a cleric, the other a clockmaker. Campani learned clockmaking, probably studied optics at the Collegio Romano, and became skilful in grinding lenses.

In 1656 Campani, along with his brothers, made a silent night clock, which, when presented to Pope Alexander VII, brought him fame. He then became a full-time lens grinder, a trade carried out for nearly 50 years, constructing telescopes and lenses in Rome. He worked for important individuals all over Europe and for the Royal Observatory in Paris. The Pope and his nephew, Cardinal Flavio Chigi, remained among Campani’s most important patrons, but he also won the patronage of Ferdinand II, Grand Duke of...

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Selected References

  1. Bedini, Silvio A. (1961). “The Optical Workshop Equipment of Giuseppe Campani.” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 16: 18–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Uncommon Genius: Giuseppe Campani and His Life and Times. Forthcoming.Google Scholar
  3. Bonelli, Righini, Maria Luisa, and Albert van Helden (1981). Divini and Campani: A Forgotten Chapter in the History of the Accademia del Cimento. Florence: Istituto e Museo di Storia della scienza.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.EgnaItaly