Force and Geometry in Newton's Principia |
In this book François De Gandt introduces us to the reading of Newton's Principia in its own terms. The path of access that De Gandt proposes leads through the study of the geometrization of force. The result is a highly original meditation on the sources and meaning of Newton's magnum opus. In Chapter I De Gandt presents a translation of and detailed commentary on an earlier and simpler version of what in 1687 became Book I of the Principia; here in clearer and starker outline than in the final version, the basic principles of Newton's dynamics show forth. Chapter II places this dynamics in the intellectual context of earlier efforts--the first seeds of celestial dynamics in Kepler, Galileo's theory of accelerated motion, and Huygens's quantification of centrifugal force--and evaluates Newton's debt to these thinkers. Chapter III is a study of the mathematical tools used by Newton and their intellectual antecedents in the works of Galileo, Torricelli, Barrow, and other seventeenth-century mathematicians. The conclusion discusses the new status of force and cause in the science that emerges from Newton's Principia. Originally published in 1995. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905. "A major contribution to Newtonian studies."--Choice "De Gandt's book ... is a lucid and historically grounded essay devoted to Newton's mathematization of central forces."--Centaurus Series: Subject Areas:
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