A new phenomenon characterized science in the 17th century: the scientific society. One of the earliest and most important was the Academy of the Lynx (Accademia dei Lincei). Federigo Cesi, Duke of Aquasparta, founded the Lynx in 1603. Galileo soon became the best-known member. For the rest of his life, Cesi provided Galileo and other Lynx with crucial intellectual, financial, and moral support. The works of the Lynx spanned all fields of science, including the most important early natural history of America.