Sir Isaac Newton

Sir Isaac Newton was born in England on December 5, 1643 (which coincidentally was the very same year of Galileo's death) and he lived to be 85 years old. Newton was an English physicist and mathematician who was considered to be "the greatest scientist of his era." Brought up by his grandmother, he pursued his education by attending Free Grammar School and then later attending Trinity College Cambridge. It was in Newton's collegiate level of education where he developed an immense interest and passion for mathematics, physics, and astronomy. So much of an interest that he received a bachelor's degree as well as a master's degree. Newton was prone to depression and was involved in manny heated arguments with other scientists in his time but by the early 1700s, he was considered to be the dominant figure in British and European science.

History of Newton

Newton was first recognized in the scientific community for his various experiments of light composition in which he established the modern day study of optics, or the behavior of light. In his book The Opticks, Newton discovered that white light contains the same system of colours that are seen in the rainbow. His greatest book was published after The Opticks which was entitled Mathematic Principles of Natural Philosophy which showed that the universal force, gravity, can be applicable to all the objects in all parts of the universe. But Newton was most famous for his three laws of motion.


Application of Newton's Discoveries

Newton's establishment of modern day optics can be applied to all aspects of light in the universe and his three laws of motion can be applied to all objects of the universe:
  1. Newton's first law of motion, also known as the law of inertia, states that, "An object at rest will remain at rest unless acted on by an unbalanced force. An object in motion continues in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force."
  2. Newton's second law of motion states that "acceleration is produced when a force acts on a mass. The greater the mass (of the object being accelerated) the greater the amount of force needed (to accelerate the object)."
  3. Newton's third and final law of motion states that "for every action there is an equal and opposite re-action."


  1. Beiser, A. (1988). Physical Science (2nd Edition) . New York, NY: McGraw Hill

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