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Newton & Leibniz Controversy. SIR ISAAC NEWTON. Born: 4 January 1643 in Woolsthorpe -by- Colsterworth , England School: Kings School, Grantham University: Trinity College Cambridge (Graduated 1665) Other Bouts: vs Robert Hooke (Gravitation)

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SIR ISAAC NEWTON

  • Born: 4 January 1643 in Woolsthorpe-by-Colsterworth, England
  • School: Kings School, Grantham
  • University: Trinity College Cambridge (Graduated 1665)
  • Other Bouts: vs Robert Hooke (Gravitation)
  • Famous Theories: 3 Laws of Motion Binomial Theorem Universal Gravitation
  • Other: Suffered from Asperger’s Syndrome*

* As argued by Simon Baron Cohen (References)

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Gottfried Leibniz

  • Born: 1 July 1646, Leipzig, Saxony, Germany
  • Education: University of Leipzig (Graduated 1662) Philosophy Law
  • Achievements: Invented first mass produced CalculatorAdmitted as foreign honorary member of French Academy of Sciences.Refined Binary Code System.
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THE DISPUTE

  • Whether Leibniz had discovered Calculus independently of Newton, or had invented another notation for it.

OR

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Timeline of the Dispute:

1666 – Newton first refers to differential form (Although didn’t publish an account of his notation until 1693)

1675 – Newton manuscript of theories sent to Tschirnhaus. (At a time when Tschirnhaus and Leibniz were known to be collaborating.)

Earliest use of Leibniz’s use of differentials.

1676 - Leibniz admitted to having seen some of Newton’s letters, but denied their value with regards to Calculus.

1696 – Guillaume de L’Hopital publishes book on Calculus from Leibniz point of view, although acknowledges Newton’s work of 1680s

1704 – Anonymous Review implies Newton had borrowed ideas of Calculus from Leibniz

1712 – Newton publishes a paper ‘anonymously’ referencing argument that all Leibniz’s ideas of Calculus were derived from Newton

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Questions to Consider:

  • Why was the dispute considered important?
  • What effect could the controversy have on each individuals legacy?
  • What lessons were to be learned from the controversy?
  • Why is History in Mathematics relevant?
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