“I do not know what I may appear to the world, but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.” — Isaac Newton
With shades of John Milton’s Paradise Regained in the imagery, Newton’s understated self-assessment lingers on. And on this day in 1705, Queeen Anne knighted Isaac Newton. Born in 1642, Newton was a physicist, mathematician, alchemist, and deeply religious (although somewhat of a heretic for his belief that the first Council of Nicaea set Christianity on the wrong path). It was very much his belief that a study of the sciences was a study of the nature of God.
It seems fitting to note the date as we are now in a time where scientific inquiry is roundly unappreciated by our government, and is once again, held by many to be opposition to religious doctrine.
Image of Isaac Newton from the Encyclopedia Brittanica