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Fundamental forces

  1. Nov 1, 2006 #1
    I have a question regarding past thoughts on the fundamental forces of nature.

    1) Prior to the unification of the EM force, how many fundamental forces were there thought to be?
    2) When did the concept of a force first come to be?
    3) How were forces described prior to this time?

    Where can I find this kind of information? I've searched, but there is very little information on the "history" of the fundamental forces. An searches lead to explanations on Newton's Laws, or discussions where the 4 fundamental forces were already assumed.

  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 2, 2006 #2
    1) I could hazard a guess that they thought there were 3. gravity, electric, magnetic... that was way before they knew about nuclear forces.
    2) Newton recognized how to describe forces mathematically but I'm sure that they were aware of forces thousands of years before.
    3) qualitatively i would imagine.
    sorry if this is no help
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