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Elements of the Philosophy of Newton, published by Voltaire

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Director
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Joined: 16 May 2014
Posts: 599
GRE 1: 326 Q165 V161
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Kudos [?]: 244 [0], given: 64

Elements of the Philosophy of Newton, published by Voltaire [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2016, 00:31
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Elements of the Philosophy of Newton, published by Voltaire in 1738, was an early attempt to popularize the scientific ideas of Isaac Newton. In the book’s frontispiece, Voltaire is seen writing at his desk, and over him a shaft of light from heaven, the light of truth, passes through Newton to Voltaire’s collaborator Madame du Châtelet; she reflects that light onto the inspired Voltaire. Voltaire’s book commanded a wide audience, according to Feingold, because “he was neither a mathematician nor a physicist, but a literary giant aloof from the academic disputes over Newtonian ideas.” In other words, Voltaire’s amateurism in science “was a source of his contemporary appeal,
demonstrating for the first time the accessibility of Newton’s ideas to nonspecialists.”
For the following question, consider each of the choices separately and select all that apply.
8. Which of the following statements about Voltaire’s Elements of the Philosophy of Newton can be inferred from the passage?
A Voltaire’s literary stature helped secure a large audience for this attempt to popularize Newton’s ideas.
B Voltaire’s status as a nonscientist was an advantage in this effort to bring Newtonian science to the attention of the general public.
C The frontispiece of the book implies that Voltaire’s understanding of Newton’s ideas was not achieved without assistance.

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
A,B,C


9. Select the sentence that describes an allegory for Voltaire’s acquisition of
knowledge concerning Newton’s ideas.

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
sentence 2 (“In the book’s . . . Voltaire”) is the correct choice.



Practice Test Questions
Question: 8-9
Page: 323

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Director
Director
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Joined: 16 May 2014
Posts: 599
GRE 1: 326 Q165 V161
Followers: 61

Kudos [?]: 244 [1] , given: 64

Re: Elements of the Philosophy of Newton, published by Voltaire [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2016, 00:33
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Explanation:


8. All three choices are correct.
Choice A is correct: the paragraph states that one of the reasons Voltaire’s book commanded a wide audience is that he was “a literary giant.” Choice B is correct: the paragraph states that Voltaire’s amateurism in science demonstrated that nonspecialists could also understand Newton’s ideas. Choice C is correct: the paragraph refers to Voltaire’s collaborator, Madame du Châtelet. In the image described, she serves as the intermediary between Newton and Voltaire, conveying Newton’s ideas to Voltaire.

9. In the image described in the second sentence, Voltaire acquires his knowledge of Newton through Madame du Châtelet, who conveys Newton’s ideas — his “light of truth” —
to Voltaire. The only other sentence that contains figurative language is the next sentence, in which Voltaire is described as “a literary giant aloof . . . from disputes.” However,
this image refers not to Voltaire’s acquisition of knowledge of Newtonian ideas, but rather to his attitude regarding Newtonian ideas. Therefore sentence 2 (“In the
book’s . . . Voltaire”) is the correct choice.
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Re: Elements of the Philosophy of Newton, published by Voltaire   [#permalink] 16 Feb 2016, 00:33
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