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Newton vs. Leibniz

Uploaded by Tiffany C on Dec 05, 2002

After the introduction of algebra in the sixteenth century, mathematical discoveries flooded Europe. One of the most important being the fundamentals of “the calculus,”-“a means for calculating the way quantities vary with each other, rather than just the quantities themselves.”2 Like most discoveries, calculus was the combination of centuries of work rather than an instant discovery. Brilliant mathematicians all over the world contributed to its development, but the two most well known pioneers of calculus are Sir Isaac Newton and Baron Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz. Although now the credit is given to both men, there was a time when the debate over which of them truly deserved the recognition was of huge controversy.

Isaac Newton was born in the manor house of Hamlet of Woolsthorpe in the city of Lincolnshire on December 25th, 1642. His father, a yeoman farmer died shortly before he was born. His mother Hannah Ayscough was remarried to Reverend Barnabus Smith three years after Newton’s birth and he was sent to live with his Grandmother. Newton lived very well off as a young boy, never having to suffer poverty. As a child Newton was not robust and was forced to give up the rough games played by other boys his age. Instead, he had to find other ways to spend his time, in which his genius first showed up. His experimental ingenious shone thorough in his various creations of kites with lanterns, and perfectly constructed mechanical toys that he made entirely by himself. He created things such as waterwheels, a mill that grounded wheat into flour and other such inventions and toys. He was educated at Trinity College and Cambridge, and lived there from 1661 till 1696, during which time he produced the majority of his work in mathematics. Isaac Newton died of old age at Kensington, London on March 20th 1727.

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was born on June 21st, 1646. His father died before he was six. Leibniz attended a school in Leipzig and the education there at the time that he attended was inadequate to say the least. Leibniz however being the genius that he was taught himself to read Latin and Greek by the time he was twelve. Leibniz attended the University of Leipzig studying law at that age of fifteen. Before Leibniz was twenty he mastered the fundamentals of mathematics, philosophy, theology, literature, logic, metaphysics, and law. At the age of twenty Leibniz was...

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Uploaded by:   Tiffany C

Date:   12/05/2002

Category:   Science And Technology

Length:   9 pages (1,999 words)

Views:   2205

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