Isaac Newton

Newton

Is widely recognised as one of the most influential scientists of all time and a key figure in the scientific revolution. His book Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica (“Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy”), first published in 1687, laid the foundations for classical mechanics. Newton made seminal contributions to optics, and he shares credit with Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz for the development of calculus.

Physicist and mathematician among the greatest of all time, Isaac Newton demonstrated the composite nature of white light, codified the laws of motion, discovered the law of universal gravitation, laying the foundations of celestial mechanics and created the differential and integral calculus. Born fatherless in Woolsthorpe, Lincolnshire, his mother remarried with the rector of a parish, then leaving his son under the care of his grandmother. He was just a baby when his country became the scene of a battle linked to the civil war, in which religious disagreements and political rebellion divided the British population.

After a rudimentary education in the local school, he was sent at the age of 12 years old at King’s School, Grantham, where he was housed in the home of a pharmacist named Clark. And it is thanks to the step-daughter of Clark and the future biographer of Newton, William Stukeley, that we can reconstruct many years later some characteristics of the young Isaac, like his interest in the chemistry lab of her father, in the mice that ran in a small windmill, as well as in the games with the “mobile lantern”, the sundial and the mechanical inventions that Isaac built to entertain his pretty girlfriend. Despite the fact that the daughter of Clark spouses another person later (while he remains celibate for life), however, she was one of the persons for who, Isaac always tried a sort of romantic attachment.

 

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