Isaac Newton was born in Lincolnshire, near Grantham, on December 25, 1642, and died at Kensington, London, on March 20, 1727. He was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, and lived there from 1661 til 1696, during which time he produced the bulk of his work in mathematics; in 1696 he was appointed to a valuable Government office, and moved to London, where he resided till his death.
His father, who had died shortly before Newton was born, was a yeoman farmer, and it was intended that Newton should carry on the paternal farm. He was sent to school at Grantham, where his learning and mechanical proficiency excited some attention. In 1656 he returned home to learn the business of a farmer, but spent most of his time solving problems, making experiments, or devising mechanical models; his mother noticing this, sensibly resolved to find some more congenial occupation for him, and his uncle, having been himself educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, recommended that he should be sent there.
In 1661 Newton accordingly entered as a student at Cambridge, where for the first time he found himself among surroundings which were likely to develop his powers. He seems, however, to have had but little interest for general society or for any pursuits save science and mathematics.
Ball, W.W. Rouse. A Short Account of the History of Mathematics. 4th ed. 1908.
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