De Gravitatione Reconsidered: The Changing Significance of Experimental Evidence for Newton's Metaphysics of Space

  title={De Gravitatione Reconsidered: The Changing Significance of Experimental Evidence for Newton's Metaphysics of Space},
  author={Zvi Biener},
  journal={Journal of the History of Philosophy},
  pages={583 - 608}
  • Zvi Biener
  • Published 2017
  • Philosophy
  • Journal of the History of Philosophy
abstract:I argue that Isaac Newton's De Gravitatione should not be considered an authoritative expression of his thought about the metaphysics of space and its relation to physical inquiry. I establish the following narrative: In De Gravitatione (circa 1668–84), Newton claimed he had direct experimental evidence for the work's central thesis: that space had "its own manner of existing" as an affection or emanative effect. In the 1710s, however, through the prodding of Roger Cotes and G. W… Expand
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