Sir Isaac Newton an English physicist, mathematician and philosopher is considered to be one of the most important scientists of all time. He was born in 1642 in Woolsthorpe, Lincolnshire, in England. Newton’s father died before his birth. When he was three years old, his mother remarried and his maternal grandmother then took over his upbringing.
Newton began his schooling in neighboring towns but at the age of ten was sent to the grammar school at Grantham. During his school days he lived with a pharmacist named Clark, who might have been helpful in making him interested in science. In school, he loved to make new things with his hands. He made sundials, model windmills, a water clock, a mechanical carriage and kites having lanterns. He was not very interested in school. So, on the death of her second husband, Newton’s mother took him under her charge and decided to make him a farmer. But, his former teacher recognized his intellectual gift and ensured that he prepared for the entrance examination to the University of Cambridge.
In June 1661, Newton gained admission in Trinity College at Cambridge as a subsizar (a student required to perform various domestic services). His studies included arithmetic, geometry, trigonometry and later astronomy and optics. Much of his inspiration at this stage came from a distinguished mathematician and theologian Isaac Barrow, who was a professor of mathematics at the college and who did all he could to cultivate Newton’s genius.
Newton formulated laws of universal gravitation and motion-laws that explain how objects move on earth as well as in the sky. He established the modern study of optics –or the behavior of light –and built the first reflecting telescope. The calculus in the area of mathematics was invented by him. Newton’s ideas were published in the form of books, which are considered to be very valuable today. He died on March 20, 1727 and was buried in Westminster Abbey.