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Sensitive to the problems of scientific research, Ferdinando II (1610-1670) was the patron of Galileo (1564-1642) and other important scientists. In 1657, with his brother Leopoldo de’ Medici (1617-1675), he founded the first European society of scientific nature, the Accademia del Cimento, with the scope of promoting the diffusion of Galileo’s experimental method. The Academy, headquartered in Palazzo Pitti, engaged in research and experiments that produced a number of remarkably elegant instruments of singular shape. Many were made of glass, blown by the highly skilled "Gonfia", the glass-blowers who worked for the grand-ducal enterprises, mainly in the glassworks set up in the Boboli Gardens. Grand Duke Ferdinando II himself was, it seems, the fabricator of the thermometers called "infingardi" (slow, slothful), the "gelosissimi" (very jealous) fifty-degree thermometers, and the sixty-degree thermometers used for cooking eggs. During the years of the Academy’s activity, the extremely delicate tall-stem thermometers, some of which had tubes over a meter long, and the "spiral" ones, less easily broken because the tube was bent in "thick coils, gently ascending", were developed and perfected. Numerous were the densimeters, the wine-testers, the lanterns and the scales, as well as many instruments designed to measure the effects of atmospheric pressure, in the wake of the experiments conducted by Evangelista Torricelli (1608-1647).