Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727), English mathematician and physicist considered one of the greatest scientists in history, who made important contributions to many fields of science. His discoveries and theories laid the foundation for much of the progress in science since his time. Newton was one of the inventors of the branch of mathematics called calculus (the other was German mathematician Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz). He also solved the mysteries of light and optics, formulated the three laws of motion, and derived from them the law of universal gravitation. See Gravitation; Mechanics.
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