The Scientific and Mathematical Papers of Sir Isaac Newton
|Region / Country||
- Europe • North America > Israel
||Owner||Cambridge University Library, King’s College Cambridge, Trinity College Cambridge, Royal Society London, Fitzwilliam Museum Cambridge|
|Year of Registration||2017||Custodian||Cambridge University Library, King’s College Cambridge, Trinity College Cambridge, Royal Society London, Fitzwilliam Museum Cambridge|
Newton’s fame as one of the greatest scientists of any age continues to this day. As his biographer Richard Westfall notes, his ‘work may have done more to shape the modern world than any other ever published’. However, it is only through the documentary heritage represented by his scientific and mathematical papers at Cambridge University Library that we see a full picture of Newton and how he worked. The papers represent one of the most important archives of scientific and intellectual work on global phenomena. They document the development of his thought on universal gravitation, calculus, and optics and reveal not discoveries fully formed through inspiration of a lone genius, but ideas worked out through painstaking experiments, calculations, correspondence and revisions. It would be difficult to find a more striking illustration of the historical background to our own scientific age, which is why we wish to propose the collection for inscription in the International Memory of the World Register. We also propose to include UK documentary heritage of Isaac Newton consisting of personal notebooks, correspondence, the manuscript and annotated editions of Philosophiae naturalis principia mathematica from the libraries of Trinity College and the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge and the Royal Society of London; and the substantial and significant collection of alchemical, theological and administrative manuscripts form the Isaac Newton collection in the Keynes Manuscripts in the library of King’s College, Cambridge.