Memoirs of the Life, Writings, and Discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton

Memoirs of the Life, Writings, and Discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton

by David Brewster
     
 

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Sir David Brewster (1781–1868) was a Scottish physicist, mathematician, astronomer, inventor, and writer of international reputation. His biography of Sir Isaac Newton, published in 1855 and reissued in 1860, was the result of over twenty years' research, undertaken while publishing hundreds of scientific papers of his own. Brewster made use of previously

Overview

Sir David Brewster (1781–1868) was a Scottish physicist, mathematician, astronomer, inventor, and writer of international reputation. His biography of Sir Isaac Newton, published in 1855 and reissued in 1860, was the result of over twenty years' research, undertaken while publishing hundreds of scientific papers of his own. Brewster made use of previously unknown correspondence by Newton, and his own scientific interests, particularly in optics, meant that he was able to understand and explain Newton's work. It covered the many facets of Newton's personality and work, remaining the best available study of Newton for over a century. Brewster reveals much about the science of his own time in his handling of earlier centuries, and as a cleric was obviously uncomfortable about the evidence of Newton's unorthodox religious views and alchemical studies. Volume 2 covers the period from the dispute with Leibniz to Newton's death, and considers his posthumous reputation.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940026799848
Publisher:
T. Constable and Co .; [etc., etc.]
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
960 KB

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blem, " for feeling the pulse of the English analysts," which he tells him was proposed by Bernoulli.1 The letter of Leibnitz of the 9th April is bold and ingenious. He defends the statements in the anonymous attacks upon Newton as if they were his own. He gives an account of his two visits to London, and mentions what he there saw and learned. He charges Newton with retracting his admission in the scholium, and thus considers himself entitled to retract his admission in favour of Newton. He introduces again his metaphysical opinions as having been misrepresented by Newton, and he concludes by denying that he was the aggressor, and had accused Newton of plagiarism. On the very day when Leibnitz was writing this letter, Bernoulli was engaged in composing his famous Epistola pro Eminente Mathematico, which has formed so curiousand instructive an episode in the fluxionary controversy. He had been stung by the poignancy of Keill's reply to the Charia Volans, and the severity of its animadversions on the letter of his own which it contained; and, as will be seen from his own acknowledgment, he was afraid to encounter without a mask so bold and uncompromising an antagonist. He therefore resolved to attack Keill in an anonymous letter, addressed to Christian Wolf, one of the editors of the Acta Eruditorum. This letter, dated April 8, 1716,1 which Bernoulli, the grandson, admits was particularly directed against Newton, was sent to Wolf on condition of the most inviolable secrecy. It was to be first communicated to Leibnitz with power to change or omit what was necessary, and to print it as a letter from an anonymous person, or as if it were written by some other person with a real or afeigned name ; but in whatever way this was done, Wolf was directed to manage the whole matter wi...

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