When the apocalypse is due, according to Isaac Newton

The author of a new biography of Sir Isaac Newton says the scientific genius predicted the world would "reset" within our lifetimes.

Sir Isaac, whose important role in the scientific revolution didn't dent his strong religious views, is known to have spent much of his time looking for hidden messages in the Bible.

One conclusion he came to, according to Austrian astronomer and author Florian Freestetter, is that the apocalypse and the Second Coming would come in 2060.

"He was convinced that future events were already ordained by God," Freestetter said earlier this month to promote his new book, Isaac Newton: The A**hole Who Reinvented The Universe.

"For him, 2060 [would be] a new beginning; maybe accompanied by war and catastrophes but ultimately the start of a new divine era."

According to documents which were first made public in 2007, Sir Isaac wrote: "It may end later, but I see no reason for its ending sooner."

But he also sought to dampen expectations, and - with perhaps a lack of self-awareness - took aim at failed prophets.

"This I mention not to assert when the time of the end shall be, but to put a stop to the rash conjectures of fanciful men who are frequently predicting the time of the end, and by doing so bring the sacred prophesies into discredit as often as their predictions fail."

Sir Isaac Newton.
Sir Isaac Newton. Photo credit: Getty

Sir Isaac made the bold prediction in papers written under his alias Jehovah Sanctus Unus - a Latin phrase that not only translates as 'one true god', but is an anagram for Latin translation of his own name. 

Freestetter's interpretation of Sir Isaac's writings is that while 2060 might bring "war and catastrophes", it will ultimately end in "a new divine era", he told the New York Post.

While much of his life's work on alchemy and the date of the world's creation as according to the Bible has been discredited, Sir Isaac's contributions to science and mathematics remain almost unparalleled, nearly 300 years after he died.