Who was Isaac Newton

Isaac Newton was an English physicist and mathematician from the 17th and 18th centuries (born on January 4, 1643, and died on March 31, 1727, at the age of 84) known primarily by:

– To establish the foundations of classical mechanics through its three laws of motion and its law of universal gravitation.Newton

– Develop integral and differential calculus (simultaneously and independently of Gottfried Leibniz).

– Discover that white light is made up of all the colors.

What is Gravity? – Newton vs. Einstein


Newton’s law of universal gravitation states that every particle attracts every other particle in the universe with a force which is directly proportional to the product

Where Newton was born

Newton was born on January 4, 1643, in Woolsthorpe, about 13 km south of Grantham, in the Lincolnshire and died on March 31, 1727, in London, England.

He was a premature child. His father, also called Isaac, died before his birth. From a family of wealthy peasants, his father, however, could not read or write.

His mother was a thrifty and diligent woman. She remarried an Anglican pastor when her son was only two years old.

Isaac was raised by his grandmother, concerned about his grandson’s delicate health. Raised basically as an orphan, Isaac did not have a happy childhood.

His grandfather James Ayscough didn’t seem to want him. She doesn’t seem to get along with her stepfather Barnabas Smith either.

Newton attended the local school and, as a very young boy, showed completely normal behavior, with a marked interest in mechanical toys.

Newton’s Childhood

Isaac Newton’s life can be divided into three periods. The first is his childhood, from 1643 until he became a professor in 1669.

The second period from 1669 to 1687 was the period of his scientific production as a Lucasian professor at Cambridge.

The third term, as long as the other two, Newton is a well-paid government official in London with little interest in mathematical research.

Newton’s uncle William Ayscough, a graduate of Trinity College in Cambridge, convinced his mother to send him to Cambridge instead of leaving him at the family farm to help her, as Isaac had shown little interest in the farm.

Trinity College Student

In June 1661, at the age of eighteen, he was a student at Trinity College, and nothing in his previous studies would allow him to glimpse or even hope for the dazzling scientific career of the founder of mechanics and optics since even his previous professors described him as lazy and distracted.

Trinity College, on the other hand, had a reputation for being a highly recommended institution for those who were destined for orders.

Fortunately, this institution provided him with hospitality, freedom and a friendly atmosphere that allowed him to make real contact with the field of science.

At the beginning of his stay in Cambridge, he was first interested in chemistry, and this interest is said to have manifested itself throughout his life.

During his first year of studies, and probably for the first time, he read a mathematical work on Euclid’s geometry, which aroused in him the desire to read other works.

The first Tutor

It also seems that his first tutor was Benjamin Pulleyn, later a professor of Greek at the University.

In 1663, Newton read Oughtred’s Clavis mathematicae, Van Schooten’s Geometria by René Descartes.

Kepler’s Optics, Vieta’s Mathematical Opera, edited by Van Schooten and, in 1644, Wallis’ Arithmetic, which served as an introduction to his research on infinite series, the binomial theorem, certain quadratures.

Also from 1663, Newton met Barrow, who taught him as the first Lucasian professor of mathematics.

At the same time, Newton came into contact with the works of Galileo, Fermat, Huygens, and others, probably from the 1659 edition of Descartes’ Geometry by Van Schooten.

The Binomial Theorem

Since the end of 1664, Newton seems willing to contribute personally to the development of mathematics.

He then tackles the theorem of the binomial, based on Wallis’ works, and the calculation of fluxes.

After graduating from high school, he must return to the family farm because of a bubonic plague epidemic.

Retired with his family during the years 1665-1666, he knew a very intense period of discoveries: he discovered the law of the inverse of the square, of gravitation, developed his calculation of fluxions, generalized the theorem of the binomial and revealed the physical nature of colors.

However, Newton remained silent about his discoveries and resumed his studies at Cambridge in 1667.

From 1667 to 1669, he undertook active research into optics and was elected Fellow of Trinity College.

Resignation from the Chair

In 1669, Barrow resigned from his Lugasian chair of mathematics and Newton succeeded him and held this position until 1696.

The same year he sends Collins, through Barrow, his Analysis per equations numero terminorum infinite.

For Newton, this manuscript represents the introduction to a powerful general method, which he will develop later: his differential and integral calculus.

In 1672 he published a work on light with an exposition of his philosophy of science, a book that was severely criticized by most of his contemporaries, among them Robert Hooke (1638-1703) and Huygens, who held different ideas about the nature of light.

As Newton did not want to publish his discoveries, he did not lack more than that to reaffirm his convictions, and he kept his word until 1687, the year of the publication of his Principia, except perhaps another work on the light that appeared in 1675.

Algebra Teaching

From 1673 to 1683, Newton taught algebra and equation theory, but it seems that few students attended his courses.

Meanwhile, Barrow and astronomer Edmond Halley (1656-1742) recognized his merits and encouraged him in his work.

Around 1679, he verified his law of universal gravitation and established the compatibility between his law and Kepler’s three laws of planetary motion
Newton discovered the principles of his differential and integral calculus around 1665-1666, and over the next decade, he developed at least three different approaches to his new analysis.

From 1684, his friend Halley encouraged him to publish his mechanical works, and finally, thanks to the moral and economic support of the latter and the Royal Society, he published his famous Philosophiae Naturalis Principia mathematíca in 1687.

The three books of this work contain the fundamentals of physics and astronomy written in the language of pure geometry.

The University of Cambridge

In 1687, Newton defended the rights of the University of Cambridge against the unpopular King James II.

As a tangible result of the effectiveness he demonstrated on that occasion, he was elected to Parliament in 1689, at the time when the king was dethroned and forced into exile.

He kept his seat in Parliament for several years without, however, being very active during the debates.

During this time he continued his chemistry work, in which he proved to be very competent, although he did not publish great discoveries on the subject.

He also studied hydrostatics and hydrodynamics and built telescopes.

After having been a professor for nearly thirty years, Newton left his post to accept the responsibility of Director of the Mint in 1696.

During the last thirty years of his life, he practically abandoned his research and devoted himself to religious studies.

He was elected president of the Royal Society in 1703 and re-elected every year until his death. In 1705 he was knighted by Queen Anne as a reward for his service to England.

Best Idea Ever Isaac Newton

“Best Idea Ever” is a funny take on the actual anecdote of Sir Newton and the apple.

Newton’s contributions to the sciences

At the end of 1664, he carried out arduous experiments on mathematical problems where he used John Wallis’ binomial theorem as a basis for later developing his method called Flux Calculation.

A year later an epidemic of bubonic plague arrived in the city where he lived, so he returned to the family farm he had, postponing his studies as well and it was there where he had a time of discovery.

In which the formalization of the method of fluxions, the generalization of the binomial theorem, the law of the inverse of the square of the distance in gravitation and the development of the bases of classical mechanics stand out.

All these discoveries he would keep silent for fear that his ideas would be stolen and that they would be criticized by experts.

In 1667 he resumed his university studies at Cambridge and from that year until 1669 he focused on research into optics.

Newton also made contributions to the calculation and undertook it from analytical geometry by proposing a geometrical and analytical approach to mathematical derivatives, applied to curves that were defined from various equations, including quadrature and tangent theory.

With these studies, Newton was able to find that the tangent method could also be used to calculate instantaneous velocities from a known distance.

Law of universal gravitation

With this law Isaac Newton was able to explain the most relevant physical phenomena of the whole universe, since he proposes the following:

F: It is the gravitational force vector.
G: It is the universal gravitational constant discovered and measured by Henry Cavendish, its value is 6.67×10^-11 N-m2/kg2.
m1 and m2: These are the masses of two objects that interact with each other.
A: This is the distance between the two objects.

Universal gravitation is more than just a force directed at the sun, it is also a force that planets make on the sun and all the elements that make up the universe.

On this basis, Newton realized that the movement of the celestial bodies was not regular and he stated:”The planets neither move exactly in ellipses nor do they rotate twice in the same orbit.

Another of Newton’s great contributions to the sciences was that of the laws of dynamics, which are also known as Newton’s laws and are responsible for explaining the movement, causes, and effects of objects or bodies.

Newton’s three laws

Newton managed to set out his three laws in the following way:

Newton’s First Law: Law of Inertia

“Everybody will remain in its state of repose or uniform, rectilinear motion unless it is forced by external forces to change its state. Newton implies in this law that an object or body on which no external forces act will always be at rest or moving at a constant speed.

Newton’s Second Law: The Law of Interaction and Force

“The acceleration of an object is directly proportional to the net force acting on it and inversely proportional to its mass.

This law explains that when one body or object imprints a force on another, the conditions necessary to change its state of rest or movement exist.

Mathematically, this second law is proposed in this way: F= m. a; where F is the force measured in newtons to be applied to an object, m is the mass of the object and a is the acceleration caused by the force.

Newton’s Third Law: Law of Action and Reaction

“With all action, there is always an equal and opposite reaction; the mutual actions of two bodies are always equal and directed in opposite directions.

This law explains that each object exerts a force on another, the second exerts a force of the same magnitude and direction, but in the opposite direction to the first object.

Professor at the university

Thanks to this administration Newton was appointed a member of parliament in 1689.
After 30 years of his life as a teacher, Isaac Newton decided to retire in 1696 to take up a position as a currency director.

In this one he was a great fighter against the counterfeiters who were punished with the death penalty by sending them to the gallows, he also proposed the use of gold as the monetary standard in his country.

Contributions to alchemy and theology

Newton managed to write many words about alchemy, but they were slow to become known because alchemy was illegal at the time.

He signed his works as an alchemist in the name of Jeova Sanctus Unus which referred to an anti-Trinitarian motto that means Jehovah alone holy.

In 1680 his most important and extensive work on alchemy, Index Chemicus, was written, which stood out for its strict organization and which would end at the end of that century.

In the following years, he continued his alchemical studies and research and published writings such as Ripley expounded, Praxis and Tabula Smaragdina.

As for theology, Isaac Newton was an Arianist and believed in one God since he was the son of puritanical fathers, so he devoted the most time of his days to the study of the Bible than to that of science itself.

However, Newton was not a trinity believer and blamed the Catholic Church for fraud in the holy scriptures.

Movie Newton In Space

This video illustrates Newton’s 3 Laws of Motion with some 2D animations, with examples of astronauts Isaac, Neeva, and Max.


The last years of his life were overshadowed by the unfortunate international controversy with Leibniz over the priority of the invention of the new analysis.

Mutual accusations of plagiarism, secrets hidden in cryptograms, anonymous letters, unpublished treaties, often subjective statements by friends and supporters of the two warring giants, manifest jealousy and efforts by the conciliators to bring the adverse clans closer together.

During the last years of his life, the scientist suffered from renal insufficiency caused by nephritic colic, which caused his death on March 31, 172; his body was buried in Westminster Abbey.

Isaac Newton was always respected as a result of all the positions he held and the work he did in each of them, which always contributed to the improvement of each of the fields in which he moved.

After a long and dreadful illness, Newton died on the night of March 20, 1727, and was buried in Westminster Abbey among the great men of England.

That Newton died.

Some biographers and historians who investigate the life of this scientist mention that he may have died a virgin because of his misogyny and extreme puritanical customs.

In his manuscripts, he has left behind a legacy of knowledge and pages with a lot of content based on alchemy, some cuttings of biblical passages, as well as some calculations that are difficult to understand.

All this has been evidenced by scholars in the probable search for alchemical uses or prolonging life, his hair was examined for mercury and this may have been a factor that worsened his health, at 84 years old on March 20, 1727, Isaac Newton died after a kidney dysfunction while he was sleeping.

Where Newton is buried

His remains are buried in the well-known Westminster Abbey in the United Kingdom.
Isaac Newton Cemetery Address: 20 Deans Yd, Westminster, London SW1P 3PA, United Kingdom.

The much more elaborate epitaph is from Isaac Newton which is written in Latin and reads as follows:

“Here rests Sir ISAAC NEWTON, a Knight who with almost divine mental strength demonstrated the first, with his resplendent mathematics, the movements and figures of the planets, the paths of the comets and the ebb and flow of the Ocean.

He carefully investigated the different refrangibilities of the light rays and the properties of the colors originated by them.

He was a diligent, sagacious and faithful interpreter of Nature, Antiquity and Holy Scripture. In his philosophy, he defended the Majesty of the Almighty and manifested the simplicity of the Gospel in his conduct.

Give thanks, mortals, to Him who has existed thus, and so greatly as an adornment of the human race.

The curious thing about the transcription of his epitaph in its entirety is not what Newton thought, to his discoveries and advanced age he had another vision of life.

Not to mention that the tomb of Isaac Newton is the most visited tomb from the ordinary citizen to the royalty, scientists, and cults.

A great book I recommend is this.

Who Was Isaac Newton?;Who Was...?
  • Sin descripción
  • Janet B Pascal, Who Hq
  • Publisher: Penguin Workshop
  • Pasta blanda: 104 pages

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