Its development  1 A quick google will turn up many articles on the development and history of calculus. Wikipedia has a good one. came about over a very long time, starting with the ancient Greek geometers. Indian, Persian and Arab mathematicians made significant contributions from around the $6^{\rm th}$ century. But modern calculus really starts with Newton and Leibniz in the $17^{\rm th}$ century who developed independently based on ideas of others including Descartes. Newton applied his work to many physical problems (including orbits of moons and planets) but didn't publish his work. When Leibniz subsequently published his “calculus”, Newton accused him of plagiarism — this caused a huge rift between British and continental-European mathematicians which wasn't closed for another century.