Niccolo Guicciardini teaches history of science at the University of Bergamo, Italy. He has devoted many years to studying Newton's mathematical thought and its reception, and is the author of Reading the Principia: The Debate on Newton's Mathematical Methods for Natural Philosophy from 1687 to 1736 (1999) and Isaac Newton on Mathematical Certainty and Method (2009).
"In this elegant and perceptive biography, one of the leading scholars of Isaac Newton's career provides a clear and often startling summary of the life of one of the greatest early modern scholars and philosophers of nature. With considerable intellectual balance and literary vigour, this book explores the full range of Newton's achievements, both in the mathematics and natural philosophy which laid the foundations of his cosmology and mechanics, and his strenuously reasoned and absorbing analysis of scripture and prophecy, alchemy and apocalypse. Guicciardini is especially keen to put Newton back into the world where he labored and flourished, a milieu he shows was very different from that of current sciences or of modern religious thought to which Newton's enterprise nevertheless made the most decisive contributions. The book offers a fascinating introduction to the aims and achievements of a towering figure of European intellectual culture."--Simon Schaffer, University of Cambridge "This pithy, nuanced biography of Isaac Newton examines the whole man, as a scientist born into the tumultuous seventeenth century and as an icon (and puzzle) through time."--Barbara Kiser "Nature "