Isaac Newton, The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy, First Edition, Rare Book

Isaac Newton’s The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy
Rare, First English Edition

Einstein describes Newton’s The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy:

“”Newton’s Principia is generally described as the greatest work in the history of science. Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler had certainly shown the way; but where they described the phenomena they observed, Newton explained the underlying universal laws. The Principia provided the greatest synthesis of the cosmos, proving finally its physical unity. Newton showed that the important and dramatic aspects of nature that were subject to the universal law of gravitation could be explained, in mathematical terms, with a single physical theory. With him the separation of the natural and supernatural, of sublunar and superlunar worlds disappeared….”

Other scholars agree with Einstein. Newton’s work, published in 1687, is famous for having sparked a revolution in physics at its time. It helped connect mathematics and physics in a way that had not been explored before. Although there may not have been an immediate acceptance of Newton’s theories at the time, by the end of the 17th century a different kind of science had emerged from his work.

Isaac Newton, The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy, First Edition, Rare Book

Isaac Newton’s The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy

With Newton’s physical theories came mathematical methods that are now known in the field of calculus. Newton writes in the preface of the book,

“And therefore we offer this work as mathematical principles of philosophy. For all the difficulty of philosophy seems to consist in this—from the phenomena of motions to investigate the forces of Nature, and then from these forces to demonstrate the other phenomena…”

In The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy, Newton lays out the general principles that he has discovered, instantly making him the most famous scientist in Europe at the time.

Some controversy has been attached to Newton’s publication and findings. Some historians believe that Robert Hooke’s letters to Newton, as well as his own findings, may have had some influence on the book. Hooke himself believed that his discoveries had been taken from him when the book was published. Despite this, Newton’s name lives on as the mastermind behind the theories in his famous book.

We are honored to have a first edition in English of this rare, historic piece of history. Published in London in 1729 by Benjamin Motte, this first edition in English of Newton’s Principia is in two volumes. It is bound in full leather, with gilt tiles and stamping to the spine. With forty-six folding engraved plates and two folding charts, this excellent near fine copy of this landmark work has a few leaves with light foxing and pages lightly toned.

To learn more about this rare, historic book, click here.

Isaac Newton, The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy, First Edition, Rare Book

Isaac Newton’s The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy