After 5 years offline, IsaacNewton.org.uk is being updated during 2006.
Please bear with us while we track down all
the dead links etc.
You can buy many of these books online through isaacnewton.org.uk's bookshop.
bibliography is maintained by
Bob Bruen - this
includes references for a large number of papers by Newton.
For the books owned by Newton himself, see
Villamil's catalogues from
Newton: the Man.
Works by Newton
- Newton (A Norton critical edition)
- Edited by I.B. Cohen and R.S. Westfall, pp436, W.W. Norton &
Company, New York and London, 1995, ISBN 0-393-95902-3.
An anthology of key Newtonian writings: both by Newton himself
and by historians of science. Arranged in nine sections:
Natural Philosophy, Scientific Method, Experimental Procedure,
Optics, Rational Mechanics, System of the World, Alchemy and
Theory of Matter, Theology, Mathematics. (And all this for only
£6.99 in the UK!)
- Certain Philosophical Questions: Newton's Trinity
- Edited with commentary (325 pp) by J.E. McGuire and Martin Tamny,
Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1983, ISBN 0-521-23164-7.
Printed facsimile of ULC Add MS 3996 Questiones quaedam
Philosophicae ("QQP") with on the page transcription into
modern spelling. Also, facsimile of ULC Add MS 3975
Of Colours. This is a thorough, almost line by line,
analysis of QQP. My criticism of their comments on the
Two Falling Globes experiment is
the exception rather than the rule. QQP marked the beginning of
Newton's study of 17th century natural philosophy and all of his
famous discoveries in science grew from essays in this notebook.
- Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy and
his System of the World
- Andrew Motte's 1729 translation, revised by Florian Cajori, 1930.
2 vols, University of California Press, Berkeley, 1962,
- Philosophiae Naturalis Principia
- Reprint of the 1687 first edition, William Dawson & Sons, London,
1953, 1000 copies.
The first time Principia was published in England
after Newton's death (excluding translations.)
- The Principia
- Reprint of the 1729 translation by Andrew Motte, 455pp,
Prometheus Books, New York, 1995, ISBN 0-87975-980-1.
The edition is itself a reprint of the 1848 New York edition of
D. Adee, and includes an index.
- Opticks, or a Treatise of Reflections, Refractions,
Inflections, and Colours of Light
- Fourth English edition of 1730. Preface by I. Bernard Cohen.
Introduction by Sir Edmund Whittaker. Foreward by Albert Einstein.
Analytical Table of Contents by Duane H.D. Roller. 56 lines drawings,
7 figures. cxxvi+406pp. Dover, New York, 1952, ISBN 0-486-60205-2.
- Correspondence of Sir Isaac Newton and
Professor Cotes including letters of other eminent men, now
first published from the originals in the Library of Trinity College,
- Edited by Joseph Edleston. J.W. Parker, Cambridge, 1850.
Edleston printed most of the correspondence between Newton and Cotes
between 1709 and 1715, and correspondences with others including
Richard Bentley, John Keill, Henry Oldenburg, John Locke, Robert Hooke
and John Wallis. Also printed was some material from the records of
Trinity College (where Edleston was
Senior Bursar) including Newton's college dividends for 1668-1702,
his redits and exits (``comings and goings'' recorded by his signature
in the Exit and Redit books and included in Newtonia's
Chronology) for 1668-96, and his
buttery bills for 1686-1702.
- The Correspondence of Isaac Newton
- Edited by H.W. Turnbull, J.F. Scott, A.R. Hall. 7 vols. Cambridge
University Press, Cambridge.
- I 1661-1675 (1959)
- II 1676-1687 (1960 552pp)
- III 1687-1694
- IV 1694-1709 (1967 612pp ISBN 0-521-05815-5)
- V 1709-1713 (1975 490pp ISBN 0-521-08721-X)
- VI 1713-1718 (1976 537pp ISBN 0-521-08722-8)
- VII 1718-1727 (1978 536pp ISBN 0-521-08723-6)
- The Mathematical Works of Isaac Newton
- Edited by D.T. Whiteside. 8 vols. Cambridge University Press,
- I 1664-1666 (1967)
- II 1667-1670
- III 1670-1673 (1969 616pp ISBN 0-521-07119-4)
- IV 1674-1684 (1971 712pp ISBN 0-521-07740-0)
- V 1684-1691 (1975 649pp ISBN 0-521-08262-5)
- VI 1691-1695 (1976 754pp ISBN 0-521-08719-8)
- VII 1697-1722 (1981 760pp ISBN 0-521-08720-1)
- Unpublished Scientific Papers of
- Edited by A.R. Hall and M.B. Hall. Translations of latin texts.
Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1962.
- The Optical Papers of Isaac Newton: vol I,
the Optical Lectures 1670-1672
- Edited by Alan E. Shapiro. 656pp. Cambridge University Press,
Cambridge, 1984, ISBN 0-521-25248-2.
- Additional MS in the Cambridge University
- Most of Newton's scientific papers
were donated to
Library by the earl of Portsmouth, and are catalogued among the
- Keynes Collection at King's College,
- John Maynard Keynes, the influential economist, bought a large
number of Newton's non-scientific papers, especially on alchemy.
He left them to
his old Cambridge college.
There are also several biographies on
- Never at Rest
- Richard S. Westfall, 908pp, 23 illustrations, figures, 10 page
bibliographic essay, detailed footnotes.
Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1980, 1983, ISBN 0-521-23143-4
(hardback), ISBN 0-521-27435-4 (paperback).
A.R. Hall's verdict was "That this is the best biography of Newton
is easily and truthfully said ... surely no one is going to repeat
Westfall's immense and shrewdly conducted task in this century at
You can buy this book online through Newtonia's
- The Life of Isaac Newton
- Richard S. Westfall, 325pp, 6 illustrations, 9 line diagrams.
Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1993, ISBN 0-521-43252-9.
This is an abriged version of Never at Rest with many of the
technical passages removed.
- Isaac Newton: Adventurer in Thought
- A. Rupert Hall, 468pp, 16 figures and illustrations. Blackwell
Publishers, Oxford, 1992, ISBN 0-631-17906-2.
Hall's book did not attempt to replace Never at Rest
most emphasis on Hall's own interests of Newton's mathematics and
- In the Presence of the Creator:
Isaac Newton and His Times
- Gale E. Christianson, 623pp, 9 figures, 23 pictures.
The Free Press, New York, 1984, ISBN 0-02-905190-8.
Similar in size to Never at Rest but more of a secondary
- Memoirs of Sir Isaac Newton's Life
- William Stukeley, Taylor & Francis, London, 1936.
The first publication of a ninety page manuscript written by
Stukeley in 1752 containing material collected by Stukeley during
his friendship with Newton of 1718-27.
- Memoirs of the Life, Writings and Discoveries of
Sir Isaac Newton
- Sir David Brewster, 2 vols. Thomas Constable & Co.,
- Newton: the Man
- R. de Villamil, 111pp. Gordon Knox, London, 1931.
Foreword by Albert Einstein.
Villamil discovered both the inventory
of Newton's estate made after his death and catalogues of his
library. These documents are published as appendices to this unique
book which is largely a discussion of their contents. Newtonia
includes a hypertext version of
Newton: the Man
- Issac Newton: a Biography
- L.T. More, 1934.
- Brief Lives No. 11: Sir Isaac Newton
- E.N. da C. Andrade, 140pp, 1 portrait, several figures, Collins,
- A Portrait of Isaac Newton
- Frank Manuel, pp478, 18 plates, Da Capo Press, New York, 1968,
A problematic book to say the least, based on a psychological
analysis of Newton's life which most subsequent biographers have
criticised to varying degrees.
Books about Newton's Work
- Force in Newton's Physics: The Science of Dynamics
in the Seventeenth Century
- Richard S. Westfall, 579pp, American Elsevier, New York and
Macdonald and Co., London, 1971.
- The Foundations of Newton's Alchemy, or
the Hunting of the Green Lion
- Betty Jo Teeter Dobbs, 315pp, 4 plates, Cambridge University Press,
Cambridge, 1975, ISBN 0 521 27381 1.
Includes a 20 page bibliography of related Newtonian and alchemical books,
a list of Newton's alchemical papers from the Sotheby Sale of 1936,
Newton's essay on the preparation of star reguluses (Cambridge UL MS
Add 3975, f.42 r,v) and "The Key" ("Clavis" of Keynes
MS 18) in Latin and English translation.
- The Janus faces of genius: the role of alchemy in
- Betty Jo Teeter Dobbs, 359pp, 11 illustrations, Cambridge University
Press, Cambridge, 1991, ISBN 0-521-38084-7.
Five alchemical texts are included as appendices:
There is a
- Of natures obvious laws & processes in vegetation
- Dibner MSS 1031 B (part), Dibner Library, Smithsonian
- Keynes MS 28, King's College, Cambridge.
- Out of La Lumiere sortant des Tenebres
- Yahuda MS Var.1, Newton MS 30, Jewish National and University
Library; and Babson MS 414 B, Babson College.
- Experiments & observations Dec. 1692 & Jan. 1692/3
- Add MS 3973.8, Cambridge Univsersity Library.
- Babson MS 420 (part), Babson College.
- Fits, Passions and Paroxysms: Physics, method and
chemistry and Newton's theories of colored and
fits of easy reflection
- Alan E. Shapiro, 400pp, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1993,
Divided into two sections: Part I Physics and Method: Newton's
Theories of Colored Bodies and Fits (207pp); Part II Physics and
Chemistry: The Theory of Colored Bodies, the Chemists' Revolt and
Absorption Spectroscopy (150pp)
- The Newton Handbook
- Derek Gjertsen, 665pp, Routledge & Kegan Paul, London, 1986,
An encyclopaedia of information about Newton, with articles about
significant contemporaries and modern authors, Newtonian subjects,
and even one entitled Giants and pebbles.
- The Library of Isaac Newton
- John Harrison, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1978.
Harrison collated the Huggins and
Musgrave catalogues with data from an examination of the individual
volumes where possible. This is currently the most reliable source of
information about Newton's library.
- Let Newton Be!
- Edited by John Fauvel, Raymond Flood, Michael Shortland and Robin
Wilson, 272pp, c.100 illustrations, Oxford University Press, Oxford,
1988, ISBN 0-19-853937-1.
Contents: Newton's success Derek Gjertsen,
Newton's Principia John Roche,
Newton's mathematical work Jon Pepper,
Newton's optics: the changing spectrum of science
The harmonic roots of Newtonian science
Newton, matter and magic John Henry,
The secret life of an alchemist Jan Golinkski,
The God of Isaac Newton John Brooke,
Newton and the wisdom of the ancients
Anti-Newton Geoffrey Cantor,
Newton as national hero Maureen McNeil,
Newton and the twentieth century - a personal view
Sir Hermann Bondi.
- The Birth of a New Physics
- I. Bernard Cohen, 258pp, 1960. Revised edition Penguin Books, 1987,
- Theories of Light: from Descartes to
- A.I. Sabra, 365pp, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1981,
ISBN 0-521-24094-8 (hardback) and ISBN 0-521-28436-8 (paperback)
- Conjectures and Refutations
- Karl R. Popper, 431pp, Routledge & Kegan Paul Limited, London,
5th edition 1974, ISBN 0-7100-6508-6.
Popper's obituaries in 1994 called him the most important philosopher
of the 20th century. In this book, his thesis that science advances
by proposing conjectures and attempting to refute them, is explained
and applied to topics in science, philosophy and social sciences.
There are some quotations from the
- Henry More: Magic, Religion and Experiment
- A. Rupert Hall, 304pp, Blackwell
Publishers, Oxford, 1990, ISBN 0-631-17295-5.
Hall is one of the most important Newtonian scholars, and this
emphasis is very evident in his book, which is almost "Henry
More for people interested in Newton". In his own words:
"My book is concerned only with the scientific aspects of More's
thought, and his relationship to Newton in particular. I have excluded
any evaluation of More as poet and theologian." Nevertheless, Hall
skillfully uses More's ideas to throw many aspects of Newton's
philosophy into sharp relief.
- On the Shoulders of Giants: A Shandean
- Robert K. Merton, foreward by Umberto Eco, afterward by Denis Donoghue.
xxv+320pp, University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 1993
(first edition 1965) ISBN 0-226-52086-2.
A comprehensive study of the image of seeing further by standing on
the shoulders of giants, from the twelfth to twentieth centuries.
This image was used Newton in a letter to
Robert Hooke in 1675.
- The Tower of London
- R. Allen Brown and P.E. Curnow, 92pp, 19 figures and 27 illustrations,
A3 folded plan, glossary,
Her Majesty's Stationary Office, London, 1984, ISBN 0-11-671148-5.
The Department of the Environment guidebook, with photographs, cutaway
drawings and plans. Now that the Tower is administered by the Queen
rather than English Heritage, a guidebook like this is no longer
available - just ``souvenir books'' with hardly any words.
- Survey of London
- Published in many volumes, spread over several decades. This is
the definitive description of notable buildings in Greater London,
including their history, important architectural features and
prominent occupiers. Some relevant volumes are:
Everyman edition of the Diary of Samuel Pepys
- Deciphered from Pepys' shorthand, and edited in two volumes, notes by
Richard Lord Braybrooke, J.M. Dent & Co., London, c.1906.
Many other editions of Pepys' diary are available and the complete text
requires about ten volumes. There are some
extracts relevant to Newton's life.
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