Newton on the Ganges: Asiatic Enlightenment of British Astronomy

Historian Simon Schaffer, the 2008 Harry Camp Memorial Lecturer, spoke on Newton’s fascination with discoveries about ancient Indian philosophy and discussed the global network of information on which Newton relied for his Principia Mathematica isaacnewton

When we think of Sir Issac Newton, we don’t usually associate him with the exotic. Newton was a saturnine and complex man who wrote on theology and astrology as well as physics and mathematics. He was prime for the reception of Indian astronomy within a  British context..

This comes as archeologists confirm that the Stonehenge we have known is part of a larger complex. There are many structures of concentric circles, much like archetecture Newton had seen in India. Scholars, such as Peter Berresford Ellis, have shown the many similarities between the early Brahmins and Druids and argued convincingly that they ultimately drew from a common source


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