Born: January 4, 1643, near Grantham, Lincolnshire, England

Died: March 31, 1727 in London, England

Isaac Newton's father was the lord of the Woolsthorpe Manor near Grantham in Lincolnshire. He died three months before his son was born. After the death of her husband, Hannah Smith, Isaac's mother, remarried and moved to her new husband's town. Isaac's grandmother stayed in Woolsthorpe Manor and took care of him. When her second husband died, Hannah returned to Woolsthorpe and sent Isaac to a grammar school in Grantham.

In 1661 (after graduating from grammar school at the head of his class), Newton went to Trinity College at Cambridge University. The colleges in the seventeenth century prepared men only for a career in the church, in medicine, or as a scholar. At Trinity, Isaac studied astronomy, mathematics, optics, and physics. He also read the works of Johannes Kepler, Euclid, René Descartes, and Galileo Galilei. While he was at Trinity, Newton developed the binomial theorem. As a student, Newton was interested in the nature of light. In 1665, Newton received his Bachelor of Arts degree. During the Plague Years, Newton returned to Woolsthorpe in order to escape the plague.

In his later years, Newton worked on fluxions, gravity, and planetary motion. He became warden of the British mint and was knighted by Queen Anne. He was buried in Westminster Abbey.