Much like the coronavirus pandemic ravaging the globe right now, Isaac Newton too had witnessed a serious illness during his time.
However, strangely, the Great Plague that hit London when the mathematician, physicist and astronomer was in his early 20s, allowed him to make some of his biggest discoveries, including the theories of gravity and motion.
According to a news article in Washington Post, when the Great Plague hit London, some of the practices adopted were very similar to the ones being taken up now due to the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19. And one of them was social isolation or distancing.
Trinity College, Cambridge, where Newton was studying, sent its students back home to continue their studies, and the scientist went back to his home, Woolsthorpe Manor.
During the year that he stayed away from college, the article reveals that Newton wrote the papers that went on to become early calculus and also sprung his theories on optics.
It was also the time when he propounded the theories of gravity and motion.
As per the report, according to John Conduitt, Newton’s assistant, it was while he was thinking in his garden that he had the thought that the power of gravity must not be limited to a certain distance from earth but must extend as high as the moon.
In April 1667, Newton would return to Cambridge and in October would be elected as a fellow of Trinity.