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Do You Know Scientists were born in 17th Century?(49) Options
TMe
Posted: Friday, April 27, 2018 10:52:57 AM

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Upto the 17th century, science and scientists were not truly recognized. At first, people like the 17th century genius Isaac Newton were called natural philosophers, because there was no concept of the word "scientist" at the time. Ngram is witness to it.

I am a layman.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Friday, April 27, 2018 1:24:50 PM

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I actually like the name "natural philosopher" much more than I like "scientist".

The natural philosopher (by definition) was someone who loved wisdom (philo - sophia) and who sought knowledge about the universe around about (nature).

A "scientist" (by etymology) is someone who knows already.
Most researchers, even now, act more as Natural Philosophers than scientists, by this etymological description.

It's a different attitude.

Those guys (Newton, Gay-Lussac, Charles) did exactly what Whitehead said in that quote.
They looked, they saw what seemed to be the simple answer and distrusted it - so they looked more deeply and further, until they found that, no matter what experiments they tried, the answer came out the same. Then they tried to prove themselves wrong - and only when that failed, would they say "That seems to be a law".

This is part of "scientific method" and is how the best researchers work.
It works from the idea of "wanting to find knowledge" rather than from the idea of "I know".

Working in research in the seventeenth and eighteenth century must have been quite an adventure!


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Romany
Posted: Saturday, April 28, 2018 12:57:08 PM
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Sure. But let us not forget that this applies purely to the Western tradition. Eastern science was a long-held construct which established science, mathematics Anand philosophy centuries before we in the West even had words with which to discuss such concepts!!
TMe
Posted: Sunday, April 29, 2018 9:14:48 AM

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oh Thanks Romany! Thats an addition to my knowledge.

I am a layman.
srirr
Posted: Tuesday, May 1, 2018 1:31:27 AM

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Thanks Romany. It is correct that the Indian culture has the words science and scientists (of course translated in Indian languages) since the advent of early civilizations. There was division of branches like astronomy, medical sciences, geology, mathematics, physics, palmistry, and many more. The terms like scientists are used in the proper context.


We are responsible for what we are, and whatever we wish ourselves to be, we have the power to make ourselves. ~ Swami Vivekanand
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