Who invented the telescope?
In 1608, Hans Lippershey, a Dutch eyeglass maker, invented the telescope, a device used by an astronomer to magnify images of distant objects. He noticed that objects appeared nearer when seen through two eyeglass lenses, so he mounted the lenses in a tube, making the first telescope. Crude telescopes and spyglasses may have been created much earlier, but Lippershey is believed to be the first to apply for a patent for his design (called the “Dutch perspective glass”), thus making it available for general use in 1608. A year later, the Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei built a telescope and was the first to use it to study the solar system systematically. He built about 30 telescopes but used only 10 to observe the sky. Through his careful observations, he found support for the Copernican, or Sun-centered, view of the solar system.