FACTOID # 17: Though Rhode Island is the smallest state in total area, it has the longest official name: The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.

 Home Encyclopedia Statistics States A-Z Flags Maps FAQ About

 WHAT'S NEW RELATED ARTICLES People who viewed "Principia" also viewed:

SEARCH ALL

Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

(* = Graphable)

Encyclopedia > Principia
Newton's own copy of his Principia, with hand written corrections for the second edition.

The Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Latin: "mathematical principles of natural philosophy", often Principia or Principia Mathematica for short) is a three-volume work by Isaac Newton published on July 5, 1687. Probably the most influential scientific book ever published, it contains the statement of Newton's laws of motion forming the foundation of classical mechanics as well as his law of universal gravitation. He derives Kepler's laws for the motion of the planets (which were first obtained empirically).

In formulating his physical theories, Newton had developed a field of mathematics known as calculus. However, the language of calculus was largely left out of the Principia. Instead, Newton recast the majority of his proofs as geometric arguments.

It is in the Principia that Newton expressed his famous Hypotheses non fingo ("I feign no hypotheses", that is, "I do not assert that any hypotheses are true"). Here is the passage containing this famous remark:

I have not as yet been able to discover the reason for these properties of gravity from phenomena, and I do not feign hypotheses. For whatever is not deduced from the phenomena must be called a hypothesis; and hypotheses, whether metaphysical or physical, or based on occult qualities, or mechanical, have no place in experimental philosophy. In this philosophy particular propositions are inferred from the phenomena, and afterwards rendered general by induction.

The Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica is composed of three volumes.

1. Of The Motion Of Bodies
2. Of The Motion Of Bodies (contd.)
3. The System Of The World
A page from the Principia
 Contents

Many national rare book collections contain original copies of Newton's Principia Mathematica. Notable examples are

• The Wren Library in Trinity College Cambridge has Newton's own copy of the first edition, with hand written notes for the second edition.
• The Whipple Museum of the History of Science (http://www.cam.ac.uk/cambuniv/libmuseums/whipple.html) in Cambridge has a first edition copy which used to belong to Robert Hooke.
• Fisher Library in the University of Sydney has a first edition copy, annotated by a mathematician of uncertain identity and corresponding notes from Newton himself.
• The Pepys Library in Magdalene College Cambridge, has Samuel Pepys' copy of the third edition.
• The Martin Bodmer Library (http://www.fondationbodmer.org/fr/bibliotheque.asp/2-0-20-4-4-1/) keeps a copy of the original edition that was owned by Leibniz. In it, we can see hand-written notes by Leibniz, in particular concerning the controversy of who invented calculus (although he published it later, Newton claimed that he invented it earlier). As an interesting side-note, the copy shows clear signs that Leibniz was an avid smoker.

A facsimile edition was published in 1972 by Alexandre Koyré and I. Bernard Cohen, Cambridge University Press, 1972, ISBN 0674664752.

Two more editions were published during Newton's lifetime:

Second Edition

Richard Bentley, master of Trinity College, influenced Roger Cotes, Plumian professor of astronomy at Trinity, to undertake the editorship of the second edition. Newton did not intend to start any re-write of the Principia until 17091. Under the weight of Cotes' efforts, but impeded by priority disputes between Newton and Leibniz2, and by troubles at the Mint3, Cotes was able to announce publication to Newton 30 June 17134. Bentley sent Newton only six presentation copies; Cotes was unpaid; Newton omitted any acknowledgement to Cotes.

Among those who gave Newton corrections for the Second Edition were:

However, Newton omitted acknowledgements to some because of the priority disputes. John Flamsteed, the Astronomer Royal, suffered this especially.

Third Edition

The third edition was published 25 March 1726, under the stewardship of Henry Pemberton, M.D., a man of the greatest skill in these matters ...; Pemberton later said that this recognition was worth more to him than the two hundred guinea award from Newton.5

Notes

Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica
• Burndy Library (http://dibinst.mit.edu/BURNDY/Collections/Babson/OnlineNewton/Principia.htm) online editions

Results from FactBites:

 Markets and Clients (674 words) PRINCIPIA has also developed and marketed some of these softwares and currently leads Joint Industrial Projects (JIP) to enhance their capabilities and to always stay closer to the state of the art in the profession. PRINCIPIAÂ’s achievements in calculation of surface stability and analysis of mechanical resistance in Â“strongÂ” fluid-structure coupling of vessels resulted from the stability of research teams and their experiences gained throughout many years of R&D to develop and implement numerical simulation methods specifically required by the shipbuilding industry. PRINCIPIA continuously enriches its experience and partnership with the main civil and military shipbuilders, provides them with benefits from research works and find solutions in hydrodynamics, structural and architecture, also undertakes tests and measurements covering all cycles from design to the operations ships.
 F.A.Q.'s - Principia - September 21st - 28th, 2003 (906 words) Principia was held twice in the 1970's and instructed by the Willhites. Principia 2005 will be the tenth Principia held since that time and the only one being held in 2005. Principia will open doors -- emotional, mental, financial, relational, and spiritual -- to allow the participant to understand the various ways of relating to "higher power", to fellow human beings, and to one's self, and to explore the vast potential of "going deeper" into each of these areas.
More results at FactBites »

Share your thoughts, questions and commentary here