In the year that saw the birth of Shakespeare, Galileo Galilei, the revolutionary Italian astronomer and mathematician, was born in Pisa. Colin A. Ronan marks the occasion.
Rudolf Kippenhahn on how astronomy has altered our vision of the universe - from 10th-century Cairo to the Big Bang.
Columbus braved superstition and ignorance by sailing across the Atlantic when his contemporaries thought he would fall off the edge. So runs the legend, but Jeffrey Russell reveals here how the Middle Ages were maligned by the creative fiction of subsequent generations.