Sir Isaac Newton



Sir Isaac Newton (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) was a mathematician, physicist and a scientific intellect. He was born in Lincolnshire. He went to Cambridge Universi
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Sir Isaac Newton
ty. As a student, Newton's favorite English philosophers were Robert Boyle and Robert Hooke. While he was at the university, studied mathematics as well as physics. Newton's ideas came from those of Robert Descartes. Through his ideas and philosophies, as a student, Newton conducted very precise experiments involving light and the way light reflects off of prisms. Newton began to study measure, patterns involving mathematics and the forms of color. Newton became a professor of mathematics in 1669. He lectured at the University of Cambridge until 1696. He took three years out of his life to concentrate on writing a book called Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica which was published in 1687. When King James II tried to make the university into a Catholic institution, Newton was firmly against it. Because of their difference in ideas, Newton and King George were known as enemies in the world of religion. Finally, in 1696, Sir Isaac Newton was awarded the most honorable and prestigious position of Warden of the Mint. Newton was appointed the patriarch of English Science and later assumed the position of President of the Royal Society in 1703. A society began to form based upon Newton's views, these views became more and more important as the peace was restored after the war which followed the Spanish Succession in 1714. During his final years, Newton released many defenses against many critics against his works. However, Newton did spend a few years altering his works to better fit what he considered to be Newtonism. While altering his major works, Newton continued to teach and lecture at the University of Cambridge. As more criticism of his work began to appear to him, Newton became more bitter. He was very appreciative of his supporters but very bitter to his enemies. Newton died in 1727 and is now buried in Westminster Abbey. Newton has now been known as a founder of modern of our modern physical sciences. Some of his lesser studies included chemistry, Early Westernization History, and theology. Newton was interested in bible studies and also focused on the study of dimension and the forms that dimension comes in.




Table of Contents

Biography
Religious Views
Views About the End of the World
Mathematical and Scientific Discoveries



Biography



Newton was born in the county of Lincolnshire on January 4, 1643, (December 25th on the Gregorian Calendar) in a place called Woolsthorpe Manor. Three months previous to Newtons birth, his father Isaac, died. He was born prematurely and his mother liked to say that he was so small, he would have fit in a quart mug. His mother remarried when Newton was three, and gave him over to his grandmother to care for him during his early childhood. Isaac entertained himself by making gadgets, like kites carrying lit candles that flared through the sky, sundials, and water clocks. After boarding with a pharmacist for a while he became fascinated with alchemy, the chemistry of his time. He was a curious child but showed little promise in school until he got into a brawl with a student in the top of his class. Being very contentious and prideful, he suddenly poured himself into his studies to compete. His mother wished for him to take over their farm, but soon it became obvious that he wasn't very good at it, instead using much of his time reading books. Instead he chose to attend Cambridge University from 1660 until 1665. However following the 1665 Bubonic Plague he went back to Linconshire for an 18 month period of time, and during which he developed many of his most famous discoveries. Among them being the early foundations for calculus. This period is also the famous event of the apple falling to the ground which lead Newton to believe that the force that pulled the apple to the ground was the same as the one that kept the moon in orbit. He deduced that both the moon and an apple followed the same universal law instead of two separate ones. He also tested the common theory about light at the time, that white light was the absence of color. He tested this but setting a prism in front of a crack in a heavy curtain in a darkened room, so that way a beam of sunlight would stream through it onto a screen. The light separated into the colors of the rainbow, which perplexed Newton because he had no idea where the colors came from. He suspected that they were the components of light itself, so to test his new theory he passed the refracted light into a second prism turned in the opposite direction. The colors recombined and white light appeared on the screen. He returned to Cambridge in 1667, and became a math professor in 1669. In the the first book of the Principia Newton set forth his three laws of motion. He also used these laws to determine the gravitational force between the earth and the moon. In book two of the Principia Newton challenged Rene Descartes on his theory that the universe was filled with fluid, the motions of planets and stars determined by swirling vortices. When Newton applied quantitative methods to Descartes' theory however, the argument held no ground. He mathematically proved that actual observations of the motion of the planets did not match the way they would move if in a vortex of fluid, thereby disproving Descartes' theory. The third and last book of the Principia built on the first two. Newton contended that if the laws and conclusions he had come to in the first through books were right, then he could explain observations scientists had already made and make predictions about phenomena that nobody had seen before. He made many surprising projections in the book, like that the gravitational forces of the Earth's parts had to combine to form a sphere. But because the Earth spins upon an axis this additional force should change the roundness of the sphere and make a bulge around the equator. Because he knew the Earth's size, mass, and rate of spin, he predicted the size of the bulge. Although it could not be proven during his time his projection was accurate within one percent.



Religious Views



Sir Isaac Newton was a passionate and faithful Christian throughout his life. Newton was know for loving his religion more than he loved science and mathematics. Isaac Newton would read and study the Bible daily, looking for hidden themes and messages that were trying to be expressed through stories. He believed that God created the Earth and the universe, and that God made the Earth with prinicples for mankind to discover and pursue the wonders and mysteries of the world. Newton also believed that God was removed from intervention with the world, because that would show that the world He created was an imperfection. Sir Isaac's views were considered close to Deism, the only difference was, being his thought on how God was a special cause that kept the planets in orbits.



Views Over the End of the World


Newton wrote a manuscript in 1704 in which he attempted to calculate the worlds end using both his scientific knowledge and whatever information he could comprehend from the bible. Through both of these resources, Newton's calculations said that the world would end no earlier that 2060. By writing scientifically about the end of the world, Newton hoped that this would solve controversy in the world of argument and civility. This idea proved to be true when Newton's theorems began to solve controversies of people wondering what the answer to the question of the world ending and this ceased to be an issue.




Newton's book that established his idea of Gravity
Newton's book that established his idea of Gravity


Mathematical and Scientific Discoveries



Isaac Newton's claim to fame is his three laws of motion, but what people really remember him for was his theory of gravity inspired by watching an apple fall from a tree. Newton wondered why the apple went straight, perpendicular to the ground, instead of horizontal or away from the Earth's center. He then made note of a mysterious force pulling everything towards the center of the Earth, which he called gravity. Newton also thought that the Moon, as well as the other planets, also had a gravitational pull which was the reason they remained in Orbit.Sir Isaac Newton discovered the three laws of motion, which are: An object in motion will remain in motion unless acted upon by a net force, Force equals mass multiplied by acceleration, and lastly, to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Newton first published these laws in his book, Philospohiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica, in 1687. The first law, or the law of inertia, states that An object that is not moving will not move until a net force acts upon it, and An object that is in motion will not change its until a net force acts upon it. The net force is the vector sum on objects of all the forces acting on the object. The second law is the net force is a particle is proportional to the time rate of change of its linear momentum. Momentum is the product of mass and velocity. This law is often stated as F= d[mv] / dt (the force on an object is equal to its mass multiplied by its acceleration). The third law in Newton's laws of motion is all forces occur in pairs, and these two forces are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction. An example of this force is, if you press a stone with your finger, the finger is also pressed by the stone. Isaac Newton's theory of gravity and his discovery of the three laws of motion was extremely important and beneficial to the Scientific Revolution.


Newton's Works


  • Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Books I, II, and III)
  • The Newton Project Created in 1998, the Newton Project seeks to make facsimiles and transcriptions of Newton's manuscripts available in electronic form and to display their original connections, along with full documentation relating to Newton's reading such as written notes and annotations.
  • Newton's Three Laws of Motion
  • Sir Isaac Newton: The Universal Law of Gravitation
  • Sir Isaac Newton and the Unification of Physics & Astronomy





Sources





"Newton, Sir** Isaac." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2007. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 12 Sept. 2007 <http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9108764>.

Newton, Isaac. Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica. http://academic.brooklyn.cuny.edu/history/virtual/reading/core4-04r06.htm, 1687. 12 Sept. 2007.

Newton, Isaac. Arithmetica Universalis. 1707. 11 Sept. 2007 <http://www.openlibrary.org/details/arithmetica01newtuoft>.

[http://www.newton.cam.ac.uk/newtlife.html]

Spangenburg, Ray, and Diane Moser. The History of Science. New York City: Facts on File, 1993.

"Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica." Lib.Udel.Ed. 12 Sept. 2007 <http://www.lib.udel.edu/ud/spec/exhibits/treasures/images/newton.gif>