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This question already has an answer here:

Was it decided empirically (in order to respect the already found Conservation of Energy's law) that force x displacement is the quantity that corresponds to the energy ?

It's a deeper question than it looks, at least for me :)

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marked as duplicate by sammy gerbil, stafusa, ZeroTheHero, Kyle Kanos, tom Apr 10 '18 at 10:37

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