In a letter to Robert Hooke in 1675, Isaac Newton made his most famous statement: “If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants”. This statement is now often used to symbolize scientific progress.Robert Merton examined the origin of this metaphor in his On the Shoulders of Giants(Merton, 1965). The shoulders-of-giants metaphor can be traced to the French philosopher Bernard of Chartres, who said that we are like dwarfs on the shoulders of giants, so that we can see more than they, and things at a greater distance, not by virtue of any sharpness of sight on our part, or any physical distinction, but because we are carried high and raised up by their giant size.


Citation Analysis Patent Analysis Invisible College Citation Context Pathfinder Network 
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© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Information Science and TechnologyDrexel UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

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