The intellectual climate of seventeenth century Europe made for an exciting, if turbulent, setting for the philosophical understanding of causation. Scientific discoveries that fundamentally challenged the way we view the world were rapidly taking center stage. The Assayer, Galileo’s work that included his famous claim that the book of nature is written in the language of mathematics, surfaced in 1623. Newton’s monumental Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica emerged in 1687. This “new” science emphasized a mechanistic understanding of the universe governed by simple, quantifiable laws of nature, and clashed with the traditional “Aristotelian-Scholastic” model of scientific enquiry, which relied heavily on such notions as “substantial forms” and “final causes.” Taking the contact-collision model of interaction between bodies as paradigmatic, the new mechanistic worldview shunned attempts to incorporate formal and final causal elements in accounting for ordinary events like bodies falling toward the center of the earth.