8. Apple Tree
The apple tree in the garden to the rear of the building is said to be a descendent from the tree that inspired Newton. It was taken as a cutting from one at Newton's birthplace, Woolsthorpe Manor near Grantham and is a Flower of Kent, a pear-shaped cooking variety.
There has been a tree at Trinity College since 1954 which bore fruit for the first time in 1970. The tree at the Institute was planted by Lady Atiyah, wife of the first Director of the Institute, as part of the opening ceremony in July 1992, and was later replanted in 2001.
It is said that Newton gave the following account of the event to his friend William Stukely: 'After dinner the weather being warm, we went into the garden and drank tea, only he and myself. Amidst other discourse, he told me, he was just in the same situation, as when formerly the notion of gravitation came into his mind. Why should that apple always descend perpendicularly to the ground, thought he to himself. Why should it not go sideways or upwards, but constantly to the earth's centre?'
On the Replanting of Newton's Apple Tree