In Daniel and Sir Isaac's time, patenting laws and intellectual property rights did not exist to protect inventors and natural philosophers. What problems do the characters run into with the threat of someone stealing their ideas, and how do they protect themselves? How do you think these disputes would be settled if they occurred today?
The Whigs and the Tories are the two biggest political parties in England at the time of the novel. Daniel tries to remain neutral in regard to politics, but how are his actions affected by the politics of those around him? Compare and contrast the two parties, using examples from the novel.
Much of the debate and peril in the book surrounds the English monarchy and the rights to succession. Explain the tense political situation throughout the course of the book, and consider whether the characters are aware of the political peril they...
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