Punch,  53 (1867), 145.

Blaise! Blazes!





Discovery, Theory, Gravity, Mechanics, Mathematics, Physics, Nationalism, Heroism, Controversy

    Another response to news of alleged letters between Isaac Newton and Blaise Pascal suggesting that Pascal was the true discoverer of the theory of gravitation. Punch thinks it 'hardly necessary to tell Englishmen that Isaac Newton did not steal any discoveries from Pascal' and insists that, apart from the Germans, 'continentals are shamelessly ignorant about everybody but their own countrymen, and are delighted to accept any story against an Englishman'. Reports that Mr Punch considers that the attack on Newton's reputation was 'based on a blundering forgery', and notes that this view is admitted by 'Certain Frenchmen of science'. Opines that while Pascal 'was a great man', Newton 'saw the apple fall, and immediately thought of gravitation'.

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