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The Life of Isaac Newton by Richard S. Westfall

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11

President of the Royal Society

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE ROYAL SOCIETY, to which Newton had dedicated his Principia in 1687 only to ignore it steadfastly when he moved to London, stood at a low ebb during the early years of his residence in the capital city. Membership, which had reached more than two hundred in the early years of the 1670s, now scarcely numbered more than half that figure,and meetings, given over mostly to miscellaneous chitchat devoid of serious scientific interest, suggested little of the interests that had brought the society together forty years earlier. The presence of Robert Hooke,not Newton’s favorite natural philosopher, may well have determined his absence from the weekly meetings. Hooke was usually there. When Newton put ...

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