"giving their Judgments in Matters of State"

Throughout Gulliver's visit to Laputa, Swift points a finger at Isaac Newton.

Newton served as Master of the Mint from 1696. In 1722, Robert Walpole's government granted a license for the coining of new halfpence and farthings for use in Ireland, without consulting the Irish people. Those involved in England were expected to make a great deal of money.

Swift was living in Dublin at the time, and he came out furiously in favor of the right of the Irish to a voice in matters that so closely affected them. He published a series of essays under a pseudonym which contributed to the defeat of the whole proposal. What Swift could not forgive was that Newton had lent his prestige to the coinage proposal. To Swift that was an example of a mathematician giving his "Judgments in Matters of State" concerning which he had no expertise.