JAMA 100 Years Ago Section Editor:
Jennifer Reiling, Assistant Editor.
PROF. WM. T. SEDGEWICK.
MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY.
One of the sad pages in the history of science and education is that
which relates how, on the death of Alexander the Great, the teacher of his
youth, the much greater Aristotle, rightly regarded by the Middle Age as the
"master of those who know" when more than sixty years old was driven from
Athens into exile by a patriotic propaganda of the anti-Macedonians. A darker
and a bloody page tells how Hypatia of Alexandria, the beautiful and learned
daughter of Theon, was cruelly and brutally murdered in a Christian church
in the year 415 of our era as a victim of a fanatical propaganda against paganism,
condoned, if not conducted, by the Christian Archbishop Cyril, Patriarch of
Alexandria. Copernicus hesitated long before publishing his splendid discoveries
on the movements of the heavenly bodies and the heliocentric theory, for fear
of ecclesiastical interference, and when soon after Galileo, more bold, promulgated
the truth that Copernicus had hesitated to pronounce, both he and his discoveries
fell under the severest ecclesiastical condemnation ever visited upon any
man of science for the truth alone.
THE MODERN SUBJECTION OF SCIENCE AND EDUCATION TO PROPAGANDA.*. JAMA. 2002;287(13):1622. doi:10.1001/jama.287.13.1622