Isaac Newton, fully Sir Isaac Newton

Isaac
Newton, fully Sir Isaac Newton
1642
1727

English Scientist, Physicist, Mathematician, Astronomer, Natural Philosopher, Alchemist and Theologian

Author Quotes

We build too many walls and not enough bridges.

What certainty can there be in a Philosophy which consists in as many Hypotheses as there are Phaenomena to be explained. To explain all nature is too difficult a task for any one man or even for any one age. 'Tis much better to do a little with certainty, and leave the rest for others that come after you, than to explain all things by conjecture without making sure of any thing.

What Des-Cartes did was a good step. You have added much several ways, and especially in taking ye colours of thin plates into philosophical consideration. If I have seen further it is by standing on ye shoulders of Giants.

What I have done is due to patient thought.

What I'm trying to do with most of my work is establish this new modernism, ... If people don't walk out of theatres saying, 'Yes, something is possible,' then you've failed.

What is there in places empty of matter? and Whence is it that the sun and planets gravitate toward one another without dense matter between them? Whence is it that Nature does nothing in vain: and whence arises all that order and beauty which we see in the world?...does it not appear from phenomena that there is a Being incorporeal, living, intelligent, omnipresent, who in infinite space, as it were in his Sensory, sees the things themselves intimately, and thoroughly perceives them, and comprehends them wholly.

To explain all nature is too difficult a task for any one man or even for any one age. 'Tis much better to do a little with certainty, and leave the rest for others that come after you, than to explain all things by conjecture without making sure of anything.

What we know is a drop, what we don't know is an ocean.

To make way for the regular and lasting Motions of the Planets and Comets, it's necessary to empty the Heavens of all Matter, except perhaps some very thin Vapours, Steams or Effluvia, arising from the Atmospheres of the Earth, Planets and Comets, and from such an exceedingly rare Æthereal Medium ... A dense Fluid can be of no use for explaining the Phænomena of Nature, the Motions of the Planets and Comets being better explain'd without it. It serves only to disturb and retard the Motions of those great Bodies, and make the frame of Nature languish: And in the Pores of Bodies, it serves only to stop the vibrating Motions of their Parts, wherein their Heat and Activity consists. And as it is of no use, and hinders the Operations of Nature, and makes her languish, so there is no evidence for its Existence, and therefore it ought to be rejected. And if it be rejected, the Hypotheses that Light consists in Pression or Motion propagated through such a Medium, are rejected with it. And for rejecting such a Medium, we have the authority of those the oldest and most celebrated philosophers of ancient Greece and Phoenicia, who made a vacuum and atoms and the gravity of atoms the first principles of their philosophy, tacitly attributing Gravity to some other Cause than dense Matter. Later Philosophers banish the Consideration of such a Cause out of natural Philosophy, feigning Hypotheses for explaining all things mechanically, and referring other Causes to Metaphysics: Whereas the main Business of natural Philosophy is to argue from Phenomena without feigning Hypotheses, and to deduce Causes from Effects, till we come to the very first Cause, which certainly is not mechanical.

Whatever I have done is due to patient thought.

To me there has never been a higher source of earthly honor or distinction than that connected with advances in science.

When a man is taken in a mystical sense, his qualities are often signified by his actions, and by the circumstances of things about him. So a Ruler is signified by his riding on a beast; a Warrior and Conqueror, by his having a sword and bow; a potent man, by his gigantic stature; a Judge, by weights and measures... the affliction or persecution which a people suffers in laboring to bring forth a new kingdom, by the pain of a woman in labor to bring forth a man-child; the dissolution of a body politic or ecclesiastic, by the death of a man or beast; and the revival of a dissolved dominion, by the resurrection of the dead.

To myself I am only a child playing on the beach, while vast oceans of truth lie undiscovered before me.

Whence arises all that order and beauty we see in the world?

Truth is ever to be found in simplicity, and not in the multiplicity and confusion of things.

Who, by vigor of mind almost divine, the motions and figures of the planets, the paths of comets, and the tides of the seas first demonstrated. [epitaph]

Truth is the offspring of silence and unbroken meditation.

Yet sometimes vegetables and animals are, by certain epithets or circumstances, extended to other significations; as a Tree, when called the tree of life or of knowledge; and a Beast, when called the old serpent, or worshiped. When a Beast or Man is put for a kingdom, his parts and qualities are put for the analogous parts and qualities of the kingdom; as the head of a Beast, for the great men who precede and govern; the tail for the inferior people, who follow and are governed; the heads, if more than one, for the number of capital parts, or dynasties, or dominions in the kingdom, whether collateral or successive, with respect to the civil government; the horns on any head, for the number of kingdoms in that head, with respect to military power...

Was the eye contrived without skill in Opticks, and the ear without knowledge of sounds?...and these things being rightly dispatch’d, does it not appear from phænomena that there is a Being incorporeal, living, intelligent...?

You have to make the rules, not follow them.

We account the Scriptures of God to be the most sublime philosophy. I find more sure marks of authenticity in the Bible than in any profane history whatever.

You sometimes speak of gravity as essential and inherent to matter. Pray do not ascribe that notion to me, for the cause of gravity is what I do not pretend to know, and therefore would take more time to consider of it.

We are not to consider the world as a body of God: He is an uniform being, devoid of organs, members, or parts; and they are His creatures, subordinate to Him, and subservient to His will.

Zeal without knowledge is like expedition to a man in the dark.

We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances.

Author Picture
First Name
Isaac
Last Name
Newton, fully Sir Isaac Newton
Birth Date
1642
Death Date
1727
Bio

English Scientist, Physicist, Mathematician, Astronomer, Natural Philosopher, Alchemist and Theologian