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I have found several nice versions available for purchase, but all of the free ones are either Latin, old English, or pixellated. I searched google and was only able to locate the free ones linked to from the Wikipedia page on Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica.

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There is a book in the amazon… – user1355 Apr 8 '11 at 15:43
Please note the word "free" in my question. – Dale Apr 8 '11 at 15:48
I would always look first at Project Gutenburg for this kind of thing. That said, I think this is not a question for Physics.SE. – dmckee Apr 8 '11 at 15:51
@user2843: Oops!! Sorry :) – user1355 Apr 8 '11 at 15:55
"Old English"? As old as from Newtons days, I presume? There might be a dozen of today unusual words, not more. – Georg Apr 8 '11 at 16:41
up vote 7 down vote accepted

You overestimate the amount of evolution that the English language has undergone in the last 300 years. I recommend you the perfectly readable English translation by my great great grand uncle Motte, as revised by Cajori:

Let me just be a linguist for a while. ;-) Modern English has existed since 1550

when the Great Vowel Shift took place, so not only Motte's 1729 translation linked above is written in Modern English but Isaac Newton was speaking Modern English throughout his life, too. Of course, Newton would write in Latin.

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Thankyou. I would be crazy to expect more and it still be free. – Dale Apr 8 '11 at 16:16
Hi, I am not sure why you say "more". I think that Motte's translation is still the best one. ... It's not hard to freely get the other translations as well but I am surely not going to promote the well-known methods publicly. – Luboš Motl Apr 8 '11 at 16:21
Here you have another free edition from 1900:… - This edition contains the first three sections of the first book, about 300 pages. – Luboš Motl Apr 8 '11 at 16:27
by "more" I mean that, while it is available for free viewing, it is not available for free download (that I am aware of). Also, a more recent revision of this work would doubtlessly ease the reading process. But I am being rather picky at this^^ I like it. – Dale Apr 8 '11 at 16:32
Dear @user2843, if you want to download the books from Google Books, just download the Google Books Downloader,… ... Almost all these things are doable. – Luboš Motl Apr 9 '11 at 7:28

The first American edition (New York, Daniel Adee, call number QA803.A4 1846), translated by Andrew Motte, is available at the Internet Archive at

It is available in ePub, Kindle, Daisy and DjVu (30.5 MB) formats, as well as for online viewing in a dedicated viewer.

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protected by Qmechanic Jan 25 '13 at 10:30

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