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A.M., D.C.L., F.R.S., VICE-PRES. R.S., EDINBURGH, AND M.R.( A.,
ONE OF THE EIGHT ASSOCIATES OF THE INPERIAL INSTITUTE OF FRANCE-HONORARY OR CORRESPONDING
MEMRIR OF THE ACADEMIES OF ST. PETERSBURGH, VIENNA, BERLIN, COPENHAGEN, STOCKHOLM,
MUNICH, GÖTTINGEN, BRUSSELS, HAERLEM, ERLANGEN, CANTON DE VAUD, MODENA,
WASHINGTON, NEW YORK, BOSTON, QUEBEC, CAPE TOWN, ETC., ETC. --
CHEVALIER OF THE PRUSSIAN ORDER OF MERIT OF FREDERICK
THE GREAT, AND PRINCIPAL OF THE UNITED COLLEGES OF
ST, SALVATOR AXD ST. LEONARD'S, ST. ANDREWS.
Ergo vivida vis animi pervicit, ec extra
Lib. i. 1 73.
EDINBURGH: THOMAS CONSTABLE AND CO.
HAMILTON, ADAMS, AND CO., LONDON.
(TIIE AUTHOR RESERVES THE RIGIT OF TRANSLATION.]
In dedicating this work to your Royal Highness, I seek for it the protection of a name indissolubly associated with the Sciences and the Arts. An account of the Life, Writings, and Discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton might have been appropriately inscribed to the Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, the birth-place of Newton's genius, and the scene of his intellectual achievements ; but that illustrious name is more honourably placed beside that of a Prince who has given such an impulse to the Arts and Sciences of England, and whose views, were they seconded by Statesmen willing to extend Education and advance Science, would raise our country to a higher rank than it now holds, among the nations of Europe, in the arts of Peace and of War. It is from the trenches of Science alone that war can be successfully
waged ; and it is in its patronage and liberal endowment that nations will find their best and cheapest defence.
That your Royal Highness may be enabled to realize those noble and patriotic views respecting the national encouragement of Science, and the consolidation of our Scientific Institutions, which you have so much at heart, and that you may long live to enjoy the reputation which you have so justly earned, is the ardent wish of,
Your Royal Highness's
Humble and obedient Servant,
ST. LEONARD'S COLLEGE,
ST. ANDREWS, May 12, 1855.
In consequence of the wide circulation of the Life of Sir Isaac Newton, which I drew up for the “ Family Library” in 1831, I was induced to undertake a larger work, in order to give a more detailed account of his Life, Writings, and Discoveries. For this purpose, I applied in 1837 to the Honourable Newton Fellowes, one of the trustees of the Earl of Portsmouth, for permission to inspect the Manuscripts and Correspondence of Sir Isaac, which, through his grand-niece, Miss Conduitt, afterwards Lady Lymington, had come into the possession of that noble family. Mr. Fellowes kindly granted my request, and his amiable and accomplished son, Mr. Henry Arthur Fellowes, who, had he lived, would now have been Earl of Portsmouth, met me in June 1837, at Hurtsbourne Park, to assist me in examining, and making extracts from, the large mass of papers which Sir Isaac had left behind him.
In this examination our attention was particularly directed to such letters and papers as were calculated to throw light upon his early and academical life, and, with the assistance of Mr. Fellowes, who copied for me