Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Isaac Newton's Scientific MethodTurning Data into Evidence about Gravity and Cosmology$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

William L. Harper

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199570409

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199570409.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 15 October 2019

Christiaan Huygens: A Great Natural Philosopher Who Measured Gravity and an Illuminating Foil for Newton on Method

Christiaan Huygens: A Great Natural Philosopher Who Measured Gravity and an Illuminating Foil for Newton on Method

Chapter:
(p.194) 5 Christiaan Huygens: A Great Natural Philosopher Who Measured Gravity and an Illuminating Foil for Newton on Method
Source:
Isaac Newton's Scientific Method
Author(s):

William L. Harper

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199570409.003.0005

Part I gives background on Huygens’ theory-mediated measurement of gravity. It reviews his reaction to differing pendulum measurements from different latitudes and his application of rotation to give an empirical argument that the earth is oblate rather than spherical. It quotes Huygens’ rejection of universal gravity for violating the mechanical philosophy and gives an account of his proposal for a contact action cause of gravity. It also reviews Huygens’ positive comments on Newton’s moon-test inference and inferences to inverse-square gravity toward the sun and planets. Part II makes clear that the moon-test does not depend on limiting the pendulum estimates to the very precise measurements from pendulums at Paris. It also explores the contrast between Newton’s extension of inverse-square gravity toward the earth to arbitrarily great distances and Huygens’ appeal to his hypothesis about the cause of gravity to limit such extensions.

Keywords:   Huygens, theory-mediated measurement, mechanical philosophy, contact action, cause of gravity, Paris, pendulum measurements, different latitudes, oblate earth, inverse-square gravity

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .