The thermometer was invented in the sixteenth century, but it is disputed who the inventor was. The claims of Santorio are supported by Borelli and Malpighi, while the title of Cornelius Drebbel is considered undoubted by Boerhaave. Galileo’s air thermometer, made before 1597, was the foundation of accurate thermometry. Galileo also invented the alcohol thermometer about 1611 or 1612. Spirit thermometers were made for the Accademia del Cimento, and described in the Memoirs of that academy. When the academy was dissolved by order of the Pope, some of these thermometers were packed away in a box, and were not discovered until early in the nineteenth century. Robert Hooke describes the manufacture and graduation of thermometers in his “Micrographia” (1665).
This text comes from a footnote on a diary entry in the 1893 edition edited by Henry B. Wheatley.