- Isaac Newton has two birthdays
Isaac Newton was born on the 4th of January 1643, in line with today’s calendar. However, back in the 17th century, when Newton was alive, they lived by a different calendar called the Gregorian calendar, and Newton’s birthday is another on this calendar. According to the Gregorian calendar, Newton’s birthday would be Christmas in 1642! Newton was very weak as a baby and wasn’t expected to survive; luckily for us, he did as he went on to make some significant scientific discoveries.
- Isaac almost gave up on his education
It’s no surprise that Isaac loved school; his favorite subject was Chemistry. However, due to family circumstances, Isaac’s mother made him leave school at 12, so he could tend to the family farm. Some children would love to leave school to go to work instead, but not Isaac; he hated working on the farm and longed to return to education. Luckily, Isaac’s uncle stepped in and convinced his mother to allow him to go back to school.
- An apple never actually fell on his head
One of the most talked-about subjects regarding Newton is the apple that supposedly fell on his head when he was sitting under an apple tree one day. However, this is a bit of a lie! Newton witnessed an apple falling from a tree one day, which got him thinking about what caused the apple to fall to the ground. Newton later developed his theory of Gravity, believing that Earth has a force that pulls objects down, which prevents objects from aimlessly floating around. Isaac thought Gravity attracted things to one another, which kept them grounded. Remember, the bigger the object, the more Gravity that object has. Newton kept developing this theory and eventually claimed that Gravity kept the Moon in orbit around the Earth.
- Newton discovered a lot more than gravity
While we know that Isaac Newton discovered Gravity, he also made many other scientific discoveries. Newton is also credited with discovering the three laws of motion. The first law, otherwise known as Inertia, is an item that is still and unmoving until a matter of force is applied. A great example is a swing; it will hang unmoving until pressure is applied. The second law is that acceleration happens when force is applied to an object. For example, if someone is sitting on the swing, it requires greater power to cause movement. The third law states, ‘for every action, there is an equal opposite reaction. Isaac believed that forces worked in pairs. When a force is applied in one direction, another comes back in the opposite direction. Newton’s cradle is an excellent example of the third law. Newton also discovered that light is made up of a spectrum of colors. The real question is- what did Isaac Newton not do?
- Isaac has his special 50p
Interestingly, Isaac was the Master of the Royal Mint in 1699. The Royal Mint is where all the money in the UK is made. Isaac came to the Royal Mint’s rescue when one in ten circulating coins was found to be forged money. Thanks to Newton’s hard work and unique vision, British money is hard to generate even today. In 2017, the Royal Mint released a particular 50p coin dedicated to Sir Isaac Newton to recognize his impact. The unique coin was released 375 years after his birth.
- Newton never got married
In his later life, Newton was well known for making generational donations to charity. It’s believed that Isaac didn’t have many friends and never found anyone to settle down with. It is said that their friend Newton did have, found him to be mentally unstable toward the end of his life. In his final years, he lived with his niece and her husband.
- He died at age 84
Isaac Newton died on the 31st of March 1727; he was 84 years old, considered very old for the period. Newton is buried in Westminster Abbey alongside other scientists like Charles Darwin. After his death, an examination was done of Isaac’s body. It was found that his hair contained traces of mercury, suggesting he had mercury poisoning. Mercury poisoning would explain Newton’s unstable behavior towards the end of his life.
- His dog once set his laboratory on fire
Isaac had a dog named Diamond. Isaac loved Diamond very much, and it is rumored that she once set his laboratory on fire. When Isaac was alive, they had to work by candlelight as electricity had not yet been discovered. On one occasion, when Isaac left the room, Diamond accidentally knocked over a candle, causing a fire that destroyed important work. It is said that it took Newton over a year to rewrite all the lost work! That’s one mischievous pup.