Pisa’s magnificent cathedral will forever be associated with Galileo Galilei (1564–1642), a native son and founder of modern physics. Bored during church services, he discovered the law of perpetual motion (a pendulum’s swings always take the same amount of time) by watching the swing of a bronze chandelier now known as the “Lamp of Galileo.” (It’s also said, and the story is probably apocryphal, that Galileo climbed the adjacent Leaning Tower, dropped two wooden balls of differing sizes that hit the ground at the same time, proving that gravity exerts the same force on objects no matter what they weigh.) The exuberant structure, with its tiers of arches and columns, is quite remarkable in its own right; it was heavily influenced by Pisa’s contact through trade with the Arab world and has come to be the prime example of Pisan Romanesque architecture. Giovanni Pisano, whose father, Nicola, sculpted the pulpit in the Baptistery, created the pulpit here (1302–11), covering it with intricate scenes from the New Testament. Considered to be among the great masterpieces of Gothic sculpture, the relief panels were deemed to be too old fashioned by the church’s 16th-century restorers and packed away in crates until they were reassembled, rather clumsily, in 1926.