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Greek philosophy answered these questions in terms that provided the framework for science for approximately 2,000 years.

Physics, in its modern sense, was founded in the mid-19th century as a synthesis of several older sciences—namely, those of mechanics, optics, acoustics, electricity, magnetism, heat, and the physical properties of matter.These early philosophers posed the broad questions that still underlie science: How did the world order emerge from chaos?What is the origin of multitude and variety in the world? What is the underlying relation between form and matter?Until the 18th century, astronomers were concerned primarily with the Sun, Moon, planets, and comets.During the following centuries, however, the study of stars, galaxies, nebulas, and the interstellar medium became increasingly important.

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