These problems were attacked by the greatest minds of the sevebteenth century, culminating in the crowning achievements of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz and Isaac Newton-the creation of calculus. This gifted genius was one of the last people to have mastered most major fields of knowledge-an impossible accomplishment in our era of specialzation. He was an expert in law, religion, philosophy, literature, politics, geology, metaphysics, alchemy, history, and mathematics. Leibniz was born in Leipzig, Germany. His father, a professor of moral philosophy at the University of Leipzig, died when Leibzig was six years old. The precoious boy then gained access to his father`s library and began reading voraciously on a wide range of subjects, a habit that he maintained throughout his life. At age 15 he entered the University of Leibzig as a law student and by the age of 20 he received a doctorate from the University of Altdorf. Subsequently, Leibniz followed a career in law and international politics, serving as counsel to kings and princes.