*Science and Its Times*. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.

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## Overview

The calculus describes a set of powerful analytical techniques, including differentiation and integration, that utilize the concept of a limit in the mathematical description of the properties of functions, especially curves. The formal development of the calculus in the later half of the seventeenth century, primarily through the independent work of English physicist and mathematician Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727) and German mathematician Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716), was the crowning mathematical achievement of the Scientific Revolution. The subsequent advancement of the calculus profoundly influenced the course and scope of mathematical and scientific inquiry.

## Background

Important mathematical developments that laid the foundation for the calculus of Newton and Leibniz can be traced back to mathematical techniques first advanced in ancient Greece and Rome. In addition to existing methods to determine the tangent to a circle, the Greek mathematician and inventor Archimedes (c. 290-c. 211 B.C.) developed...

This section contains 1,777 words(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page) |