Isaac Newton’s Mother: Hannah Ayscough

Hannah Ayscough is known as the mother of the famous scientist Isaac Newton. She was born in 1623 in Market Overton, a village located in Rutland, England. Her father was James Ayscough, and her mother was Margery Blythe. Hannah married farmer Isaac Newton, Sr., in April 1642, and the couple moved to Woolsthorpe Manor in Woolsthorpe-by-Colsterworth, England. In October of the same year, Newton, Sr., died, and three months later, Isaac Newton was born.

In 1645, when Isaac was two years old, Hannah accepted a marriage proposal from a wealthy minister named Barnabas Smith. Under the marriage agreement, Smith was strictly looking for a wife, not a stepson. Left with no other choice, Hannah left young Isaac with his grandmother.

Woolsthorpe Manor House

Hannah bore Smith three children before he died in 1652. She then returned to Woolsthorpe with her three children and reunited with Isaac. Isaac was then nine years old, and she planned for him to follow his father’s line of work and become a farmer. Hannah soon discovered, though, that Isaac was not cut out to be a farmer, and she sent him back to the local grammar school, where he had already started his education.

In 1679, Hannah died, believed to be of typhoid fever. She was 56 years old. Isaac laid her to rest in Stamford, Lincolnshire.