Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 198

2012-09-26 19:46:07 UTC

50635d0606eea 120.56.227.194 India

THE IDEAS

OF

EINSTEIN'S

THEORY

THE EINSTEIN'S
THE THEORY SIMPLE

IDEAS

OF THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

IN

LANGUAGE

BY

J. H.
PROFESSOR

THIRRING,
OF

Ph.D.
PHYSICS AT THE VIENNA

THEORETICAL
OF

UNIVERSITY

TRANSLATED

BY

RHODA

A.

B.

RUSSELL

WITH

DIAGRAMS

AND

AN

ILLUSTRATIVE

CHART

SBCOND

EDITION,

REVISED

METHUEN 36

"

CO.

LTD.

ESSEX

STREET

W.G.

LONDON

First
Second

Published
,
,

November
, ,

3rd

iQ2i jg23

Edition
....

December

PRINTED

IN

GREAT

BRITAIN

PREFACE

THE
us

beginning
a

of the twentieth

century presented
quickly became
:

with

scientifictheory which
all
over

celebrated
Theory
evolution of

the

world

the

Einstein

Relativity.

Whoever

is interested in the
more

of mental

progress

will desire to know it be by


to
a

of this theory, surrounded


of mathematical

though

mailcoat
non-

formulae, that presents


an

every

mathematician

apparent

barrier to

further investigation.

Such
matter

truly

great

idea, however,

which

contains

of interest to mankind rendered clear and


a

at large, must

be capable
consisting

of being

intelligible,without
mathematical Theory
can

solely of
This certainly

maze

of

formulae.

applies

to

the

of

Relativity ;
clear

all the essential traits of the theory

be made

without

the aid of mathematics


of geometrical

to

those who

have

fair amount fact, found


a

training, and,

in point

of

number
their way
purpose of
mere

of such popular into current of the

expositions have

already

literature. book

The
account

present

is not
to

to

give

an

details appertaining

the

theory,

vi
but

THE

IDEAS
a

OF

EINSTEIN'S
and

THEORY
exposition
all mathematical only be able

rather to give
whole,
at

complete
same

coherent

of the

the

time

avoiding
not
we

accessories.
to imderstand

The

reader must when

what

is meant

maintain
masses

that
suffers
was

the

space
"

surrounding ^he must

gravitational
to
see

curvature

be made
a

how

Einstdn
we

bound

to arrive at such

conclusion. of the

Hence whole

must

follow up commencing in its most


to

the logical connection


with
the

theory,

Special

Principle

of Relativity leading up

simple and

primitive form,
on

and

the

far-reaching

speculations

the

finiteness of

the universe, along the path taken originally by Einstein.


In order operations
and
to

remain
on

intelligible to the layrhan, logical


mathematics that
must

based

be passed
A

over,

it suffices to
us,

say

the suppositions

and

B
to

lead

with

the help of mathematical


later
on

deductions,
on.

the fact C, and

to D,

and
to

so

By

arguing other

thus, and

inducing

conclusions

follow
a

each
we

in right succession, like the links of perhaps


the

chain,

shall
of

enable the reader to gain than


and

more

lucid view

matter,

by

going

deeply
of what

into mathematical is most essential.

operations

losing count

The present book, though


may

written primarily
are

for lajmien,

also be useful to those who

versed in the theory may

from the mathematical it convenient


to

point of view, but who

find

supplement

their knowledge

of the

general aspects of the

subject.
must

One

thing

more

be

considered.

serious

PREFACE
exposition of the theory
on

vii
to lay stress

will not only have

the fact of how

very revolutionary

Einstein's theory
theory,

is from
must

the point of view


also

of principle and

but
it

indicate
a

how

very

non-revolutionary

appears

from

practical point of view. which


appertain

The

phs^sical mena pheno-

results of the theory

to those

with which life diverge


so

we

have to do in

4aily and

in technical

slightly from
can

those of former with

theories.
fuU

that these last

be further retained purposes.

fication justi-

for aU

practical

The

astronomer,
to calculate

therefore, with few exceptions wiU

continue
man

according
will go
on

to the Newtonian

theory, the

of science
little will be

using Maxwdl's
But

equations, and
foimdations been

altered. system will be

the mental
have

of the complete
This
as on

of physics elucidated

entirely changed.
examples,
so

by

numerical

to

dispel wrong

and

fandful

ideas of the theory

the

part of the reader.

J. H.
August 1921

T.

The

Translator

offers her

sincere thanks

to Dr.

R.

W.

Lawson,

of Sheffield University,

for his thorough

revision.
never

Without

his kind help this translation would

have

been issued.

PREFACE

TO

SECOND

EDITION

No
Notes

alterations

have

been

made

in the

general from

plan of the book,

but various suggestions

colleagues and criticshave been attended this has involved 'improvements,


at the

to, and

the insertion of several additions and of Supplementary

partially in the form


end of the

book.
I

In particular, in connection
have

with

Chapter
has

XVII,
often

dealt

with

an

which objection

been

raised but

never

fully

refuted, relative to the appearance than

of velocities greater of

that of light in the rotation of the firmament

fixed stars, I
am

indebted

to all colleagues whose

interest in this

littlevolume criticism.

has been shown

by their kindly and helpful

J. H.
November
1922

T.

viil

CONTENTS
PAGE

Introduction

xi

PART
THE
CHAP.

I
OF RELATIVITY

SPECIAL

THEORY

I. Preliminary
OF

Formulation Relativity
:

of

the

Principle
for
.
.

Its

Validity
.

Mechanical II. On
the

Processes
of

Nature

Light
of

,7
for

III. Is

the

Principle

Relativity
.

valid
.

Optical IV. The


Law
OF

Phenomena?
the

.20

of

Constancy
.
.

of

the
.

Velocity
.

Light
Conflict

-31 V.
The
between

the
.
.

Two

mental Funda.

Principles VI. VII, Analysis


The
of the

.36

Concept
of

of

Simultaneity

40

Special Total
OF

Theory
THE

Relativity:
from
.

A
the
.

SumTwo

Deductions Principles

Fundamental

-45
VIII. The
Apparent

Absurdity
.

of
...

these

clusions Con-

55

THE
CHAP

IDEAS

OF

EINSTEIN'S

THEORY
PACE

IX.

The

Union

of

Space

and
.

Time
.

; The
.

Min.

KOWSKI-WORLD X. XI.
Numerical Further

6o

Considerations
Conclusions
and

.70

their
-

mental Experi.

Verification

-79

PART
THE

II
OF
RELATIVITY

GENERAL

THEORY

XII. XIII. XIV.

On
The

Inertia

and

Gravitation.

93

Equivalence-Hypothesis
of

Curvature
tational

Rays Field

of

Light

in

Gravi 104

XV.

The The

Relativity

of

Rotatory

Motion

109
and of

XVI.

Notion

of

Space-Curvature
.

World-Curvature XVII. XVni. XIX.


The

116 134 148


the

New

Theory
from

of

Gravitation
General Finiteness

Deductions

the

Theory

The

Hypothesis

of
....

the

of

Universe
Concluding Supplementary Illustrative

157
.

Remarks Notes

163.

i6s
168

Chart

INTRODUCTION

THE
led to
on

Theory

of

Relativity taking

is
its

branch

of

theoretical
in

physics,

origin

ally essentiIt has

purely
of and
a

physical
universal

experiments. philosophical

conclusions
and

nature
"

space

time

the character of the universe


it far exceeds

hence the interest surrounding circle of physicists.


to

the limited of moment


astronomers

Just as
to

it is

matter

many

more

than

geographers life is not


an

and

that the but


a

scene

of human

extensive

plain,
so

comparatively

small

ball circling in space,


physicists and

it will interest others


to leam

besides
our

maticians matheof space

that

usual

conceptions

and

time

are,

in the

main,

erroneous,

although
The the

they

approximate chapters
are

very closdy
intended
to

to the reality.

following

show

how,

on

basis of

physical experiments, been The The arrived at. Theory

such far-reaching conclusions have

of Relativity

was

developed

in two

stages.

first of these It
was

is called the formulated

Special Theory
year

lativit of Reby

in the

1905

the
had

German

physicist Albert

Einstein,

after the

way

xii
been

THE

IDEAS

OF

EINSTEIN'S
by
the

THEORY
phjreidst H.
mathematician

prepared

notably

Dutch

A.

Lorentz ; two Hermann

years later the Gottingen


shaped

Minkowski form. The

it into its final mathematical arises of

theory
and

necessity from
have
so

physical

experience,

its consequences the test of


one

magnificently

withstood

of the any

most

subtle of physical phenomena,


can

that hardly

doubt
In

be

entertained

as

to

its entire vaUdity.

the

years 1907-1915

Einstein

built up the daring structure

of the General Theory


same

of Relativity, this being at the


renders

time

theory of gravitation, which


theory
theory
a

the
one.

old

Newtonian
new

only does

an

approximate contain certain

Einstein's

not

deficienc

of

philosophical

and

theoretical nature, theory, and in its

such

as

were

apparent

in Newton's

practical applications
astronomy almost

in the

realms

of physics and
are,

it leads to formidse which those

in general,

identical with

restdting from be
so,

the

old

theory.
are

Of
to

course

this must

because

the latter There


are

found
two

be in accord

with experience.
in which

only

astronomical

phenomena theory in

Einstein's lead

theory
to

and

the Newtonian

of gravitation
cases

different results, and


in favour of

both

observation

decides

Einstein.

Nevertheless, in the
Theory of Relativity
as

opinion of the author, the General


cannot

claim the

same

degree of certainty But


even

the Special

Theory

of Relativity.

if the general theory


ever

should ultimately be found

deficient,it will

remain

INTRODUCTION
a

xiii
only
the its

master-stroke
to
arouse

of genius.

Its insufficiency would feelings of regret, that in conformity

serve

within
not

us

real world laws.

was

built up

with

Let it be said emphatically that the Einstein theory is


not the capricious product

of

mind

which
"

finds pleasure the up

in proposing
necessary

new

paradoxical physical

ideas,

^itis simply

result of

experience,

followed

with unyielding The


be

logic by Einstein. special

genesis of the
as

theory of relativity
the last few
to Kght

can

described

follows.

Within

decades
two

progressive

physical research brought absolute the


certainty, viz.:

facts

with

almost

the principle of
of the

relativity

and

principle of the
Now these two
"

constancy

velocity of light.
to

principles appeared
was

be

mutually

contradictory and vice and

^if one
versa.

right the

other must
all physical
anon

be wrong,

In spite of this,

experiments

experience
so

led
was

ever

and

to

these two the


matter

principles,
as

that

one

apt to
It he

regard
was

little short
came

of miraculous.
the
rescue,

then
"

that

Einstein
cannot
as

to

when

stated

We

doubt
as
we can

the truth of both principles


can

in question, in
our

far
nor

trust

the evidence
found

of

senses

at

all ;

any

fault be

with

the logical thought-process, between connected

that proves

the antagonism

the two with

principles.
that proof

But there

in the considerations
are

certain suppositions independence

concerning

the absoluteness

and

of

xiv
our

THE
notions

roEAS
of time up

OF
and

EINSTEIN'S
space, which present

THEORY
appear nobody
to
us
so

self-evident, that doubted

to the A
more

has

ever

their truth. however,

careful analysis of these

suppositions,
to

shows
that

that they

they
are

only
not

appear
absolute

be

self-evident, and necessities.

conceptual

Furthermore,

by suitable modi-" between the

fication of these
two

concepts, the antagonism

afore-mentioned
discovery
to

empirical principles disappears."


a

This Einstein
sense

proved

decisive step

and

induced
reverse

pursue

the line of thought


to

in the

and

consequently
simultaneous The

derive

conclusions

arising

from

the

validity of both fundamental


of these conclusions

prindples.

sum-total

is

called the Special Theory

of Relativity, and

this will be

treated in the firstpart of this book.

THE

IDEAS

OF

EINSTEIN'S

THEORY

THE

IDEAS

OF

EINSTEIN'S

THEORY
PART
THE

I
OF

SPECIAL

THEORY

RELATIVITY

CHAPTER

PRELIMINARY
OF MECHANICAL

FORMULATION
RELATIVITY PROCESSES
:

OF ITS

THE

CIPLE PRINFOR

VALIDITY

THE
Let
us

of Relativity bears this name because it deals with the relativity of a special kind of motion, i.e. uniform rectilinearmotion. illustrate this idea clearly and without ambiguity Special Theory

If a ship is sailing smoothly by the following example. before the wind in still water, with direct course and rolling and pitching, we velocity, and without say that it carries out a uniform rectilinear motion. in the As this kind of motion is of great importance and for all, special theory of relativity, we shall say once
constant

rectilinear motion Where is referred to. any other kind of motion is being considered, for instance curvilinear motion, it will be
I

for the sake of brevity, ^that when in the first part of this book, uniform
"

"

we

talk of motion

SPECIAL
stated.

THEORY
We

OF
shall put
"

RELATIVITY
forward the

expressly
statement

following
"

concerning this particular uniform rectilinear special principle of relativity motion, and call it the It is evident that we can only speak in its simplest form. bodies, we cannot attach the mutual relative motion

of

of

"

any meaning to absolute motion because it cannot be verified. Given any number of observations or measurements to without reference the made within a closed system (i.e.
we surroundings) are

unable to ascertain whether

or

not the

system is in motion.^ Now what does this


steamer
so

mean

Let
as

us

suppose

an

ocean

perfectly constructed and


no

to suffer no

deviation
so

from its course,

f joltingrom

the engines,

that

is really uniform its motion and rectilinear. Are we then in a position to assert that it is in motion, unless look out of the port-holes and watch the passing we to negative ? Our experience teaches us this waves question, for in the ship's interior all phenomena would One could play take place justas if it lay in harbour.
a

game
as

same

j of billiards in a ship that does not jolt,ustthe land. Even the most on sensitive mechanical
"

experiments
would
turn

^weighings, and out exactly the Now

pendulum
same as we

observations in they would look


out

"

university

laboratory.

when

of the

port -holes, we motion of the

perceive the motion


waves, or,

of the ship by

the

with more exactitude and caution, we perceive that there is a rdative motion between the ship and the ocean. To our make meaning clearer, we shall vary our
example
a

to speak

Uttle.

One

passes it with all phenomena


'

uniform take place in exactly the


Note
on

ship lies at anchor, and velocity. As mentioned


same

another

above, way in

See Supplementary

pp. 165-166.

PRINCIPLE

OF

RELATIVITY
we

the interior of both ships ; when

stand
we

on

the deck

of one ship and look at the other, intervening distance between the two

notice that the ships is changing,

and that they are moving with respect to each other. We cannot discern more than this by looking at one ship from the other, nor determine by mutual can we servati obour ship is at rest and the other whether
is moving and the vice versa ^whether ours and say : other at rest. Perhaps the reader will object It is surely reasonable to state that the ship at anchor is at rest, whilst the one is in motion, steam under moving,
or
"

speaking, the reader's But we must not forget that when surmise we say the ship lying at anchor is at rest, we are using and more exact stateonly an abbreviation for another ment to : The ship at anchor does not move relatively the and
not

vice versa. is correct.

Practically

earth is not absolutely at it rotates its axis once on rest, because every day, and describes an orbit of about 150,000,000 km. radius From in the course our more of a year. cautious viewpoint thus see that the ship at anchor is not actually we earth. We
that the
at rest, and
our

know

that

we

observations

more

do well to formulate the results of detect carefully as follows : we

the relative motion of both to the other ; but we cannot experiments (" Move surroundings.
or

ships by looking from one decide whether they move

not

by

"

sense

already form

mentioned.)
of expression
or we

made without reference to the is used here in the restricted For this reason, our breviat abis subsequently a solidly founded know

justified.
building

We
on

call a, ship at anchor, land at rest, ^though


"

it is not motion.

really at rest, but takes Practically speaking, it is immaterial

perfectly well that part in the earth's

whether

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

the system is absolutely at rest or not, because its motion has no influence on the course of phenomena and experiments taking place within it.
review more critically this Eissertion, as it We constitutes the pith of the problem of rdativity. are talking only of the relamust again recall that we tivity As before and rectilinear motion. of uniform
us

Let

of the earth consists of the daily rotatory motion and the yearly revolution round the We can look upon the latter movement sun. approximately as to the uniform rectilinear motion, owing
mentioned, large radius of curvature of the orbit, but this does not apply to the daily rotatory motion ; hence we cannot that the existence of the motion of the earth maintain

the motion

is not felt in a terrestrial laboratory. On the contrary, daily rotation does influence the progress of physical best-known The processes. experiment of this kind
is Foucault'g pendulum the daily motion experiment, of the earth

which
without

with the help of be determined can

the {i.e. sun and reference to the surroundings From our past experience, however, an analogous stars). determination of the yearly revolution is impossible.

been cave-dwellers who had never the light of day, but that they had attained in seen degree of culture equivalent a caverns subterranean
men

Supposing

had

to that

With the help of modem of the present day. have been able to discover physical apparatus they would the earth's daily rotation, and its angular velocity
well ; but the yearly revolution have entirely escaped sun would

and direction of axis as of the earth round the

their observations, and surprised had they come


later date and

they

would have been mightily to the earth's surface at some that motion

discovered

by

means

of

PRINCIPLE
astronomical

OF

RELATIVITY

We can only maintain our observations. does not influence assertion that the earth's motion in a restricted sense, laboratory experiments admitting refer only to the rectilinear yearly component Furthermore, we must conscientiously of the motion. true that all laboratory experiinquire if it is indeed ments
that
we

What
to
our

by this particular motion. iminfluenced can we state in the first place is this : According do not feel the trivial personal experience we
are

existence
at

of that

all noticeable daily Kfe. That,

motion in any

on

our

own
on no

bodies,
the
means

nor

is it of

proof

for

of course, fundamentally
a

results is by
so

phenomena
a

sufficient
"

important

matter

^for

delicate physical apparatus can we facts that entirely evade our personal ascertain many his cigar The passenger who is smoking observation. is no more in the smoke-room ocean steamer of an

with

the help of

conscious

of the

waves

the ship's hulk, than

of wireless telegraphy pervading he would be of the existence of the

actually uniform motion. ship's motion, provided it were Yet the telegraphist on the upper deck can verify the existence of these waves without difiiculty,and receive

the message
might could

with

perhaps be constructed
and

the help of his receiver. The reader that some suppose sensitive apparatus
to

show

whether

ship

moves

uniformly,

at what

rate, without

reference

to the

without coming into contact with them), surroundings (or the log, which is used in practice as for instance with
for measuring the speed of a ship. that we Such questions imply

doubt

the

general

The problem validity of the principle of relativity. is therefore as follows : Is the principle of relativity in truth a general principle of nature, having strict validity

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

for all physical processes, or is it merely a rule gained from experience, which tells us that within the limits of our restricted sense-perception the detection of uniform
rectilinear motion ? to the surroundings

is impossible

without

reference

the basis of question can only be decided on detailed theoretical and experimental physical research. We for certain reasons shall divide the question
"

This

"

into two,

and

ask

first: Does

for all mechanical concerned with, and is it generally

hold

the principle of relativity ? Secondly, is it phenomena

vaUd

and all natural physical phenomena, the firstpart of the question we thus have to deal with

for all other processes ? In

the following such


as

question : Can faU experimaits,

we

decide by

operations take

pendulum

experiments,

weighings, measurements

of elasticity, etc., which

place within a closed system, whether or not that system is moving ? Both theory answer and experiment this question in the negative ; the principle of relativity is thus vahd
for these
are same

laws of mechanics

that they
moving

are

the

The fundamental phenomena. essentially built up in such a way for processes within a uniformly

Thus no effect system and in a system at rest. can take place theoretically arising from such motion have taken place during our can and never experience
in this domain, Hence
we

may

dates back several which close this chapter with the

centuries.
assurance

that the principle of relativity is vaUd processes.

for mechanical

CHAPTER

II

ON

THE

NATURE

OF

LIGHT

WE
The other

found
theory

all in order for mechanical and experiment united in

processes ;

telling

us

that the principle of relativity is valid and that doubtful about it. there is nothing contradictory nor
matter

is very

different, however,

physical phenomena,

optics are by the most


we

accessible Here sensitive and exact measurements. find the point of conflict that gave rise to the origin

of which of great importance, because they

with regard to those referring to


are

of the theory of relativity. Theoretical considerations seemed to indicate that the principle of relativity can have no validity for optical phenomena, ment whereas experi-

teaches

us

that it has.

In order to show

how

it is

that theoretical optics leads to such an assertion, we must on the nature of Ught, which insert a short preliminary be omitted by those readers who consider they need can
no

further teaching

on

the nature

of dectro-magnetic

oscillations. We aU learnt at school that rays of Hght are waves know more about it will add electric and those who length {i.e.bout half a waves a of very short wave
"
"

thousandth

of

miUimetre).

all those who assert definite idea as to what

but

are

is quite correct ; it in a position to give any it means? What have we

That

8 been

SPECIAL
used
to

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

waves) are
from

life {i.e. in everyday water call waves length, very different, apart from their wave
waves on

sound
we see

and

luminous

waves.

Let

us

describe
we see

observing water waves. at a small portion of the surface of surface regularly rising and falling. what

When
a

look the

lake,

we

find repeated oscillatory motions at regular intervals for a particular is periodic with time. place, and we say the phenomenon

We

again for a moment, eyes, open them shut our thereby observing the whole surface of the water, and do not perceive that the we more, then dose them once If
we

surface is moving,

but
crests

we

see

that it is undulated, troughs

i.e.

there

are

wave

each
the eyes

other

at

phenomena
and gaze

We equal say, therefore, is spatially periodic. If we open our freely, we see the at the whole scene
space-periodicity, which gives their own peculiar character : advancing,
whereas
we are

wave and distances.

succeeding

united effect of time- and


to the motion

of

waves

these
fully

waves aware

are

apparently
every

that

single water

a vertical oscillations about Up to the present we have spoken of the surface of we water, because what clearly recognise to be wave

particle is performing fixed position.

is the motion But we must motion of the surface. not forget that in reality the water particles under the surface and the air particles above it participate in the
movement.

When habit

in the

speak of imagining

we

of
a

wave

process

motion, Uke the

we

are

visible

of water waves phenomenon advancing along a surface, whereas, in order to apply these ideas to phjreics, we by imagining a train our must mind process which We shall not find occupies three dimensions in space.

it difficult to do

so

let

us

imagine

large number

ON
of

THE

NATURE
balls fredy

OF

LIGHT

the under suspended surface of the water, of tiny and likewise a number balloons floating in the air above it,so that both balloons

tiay

luminous

balls participate in the motion of their respective What then see, on following the oscillawe media. tions
and

visually, is motion,

the

true

three-dimensional

wave

similar to that which plays so great a part in The oscillations of the water physics. particles, and in it, take place vertically, those of the balls suspended the propagation of these oscillations, i.e. whereas

the

transmission
direction

of the

waves,

proceeds

horizontally.
itself,and
of

The
the

of the

oscillatory motion

to of oscillations, are perpendicular propagation Oscillations of this kind are called transversal. each other. But besides these, there are other oscillations distinguished from : these are called longitudinal ones
waves

transversal

by
motion
can

the

fact that

the

directions of

their oscillatory identical. This

are of their propagation be simply demonstrated as follows

and

hung at of small weights or lead balls are number equal intervals from a long india-rubber tube, fastened

end downwards

at

one

to the ceiling. Pull the lowest ball a little and then let it go ; it will oscillate vertically,

propagated upwards along the tube in a vertical direction, and setting aU the other weights into vertical oscillations. The direction of the the direction of their and oscillations themselves, propagation, to deal with parallel to each other ; hence we have It is a well-known longitudinal waves. fact that sound waves are nothing else than longitudinal
are

the motion

being

waves

transmitted
The

in air,
wave

solid medium.
one

other gaseous, liquid or length is the distance from


or

wave-crest

to the next.

The

wave

length of sound

10

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

varies according to the pitch of the note ; for example^ it amounts to about 130 cm. for the musical tone C, and is smaller for higher and greater for lower notes. Soimd waves have one waves and water characteristic in common, viz. they consist of the real motion of a tangible and ponderable (air, water, substance This cannot
are

etc.).

be the

propagated

with Hght, because rays of light interstdlar space from through (free
case

ponderable
created

matter) as

vacuum.

experimental
as

an artificially well as through Nevertheless, about a century ago, research led to the conclusion that light,

sound, is intimately connected tions. with oscillaFurther data were soon obtained on the nature discovered that they of luminous oscillations.It was transversal oscillations, their velocity of promust pagation -be being about one milhon times greater than that We shall of sound in air, i.e. 300,000 km. per second. well
as

all by the letter c. On length is very small, and wave is connected with the colour of the Ught in a similar length of sound is connected with the way as the wave It is greatest for red light, i.e.about pitch of a note.

denote

that velocity once the other hand, the

and

for

sequence : red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet length, i.e." these last rays having the shortest wave The spectrum ^t^about of visible rays of xu.hns light corresponds exactly to an octave of tones. All this
"

Tir.ffnr

mni'.

a^d

it then

decreases

in

the

following

was

soon

known

excepted : What of Hght ? As we said before, it cannot be supposed to be a ponderable hypothetical unknown substance, and hence an introduced, was was termed something which Ught-aether or world-aether. All that was known with
" "

with absolute certainty, is it that oscillates in the case

one

item

ON

THE

NATURE

OF

LIGHT

11

that it was reference to this aether was neither tangible nor that it caused no friction, but that it ponderable, be capable of performing very rapid were oscillations. These aether osdUations to be rays of light.
must

transversal

supposed

was ago an important advance made in the theory of light by Maxwell, his founded who later date, a theory electro-magnetic of light. At definitely confirmed by the well-known this was ments experi-

Half

century

Hertz, and, on further investigation, of Hdnrich ing it led to the invention of wireless telegraphy. Accordto Maxwdl, rajrs of light belong to an extensive oscillations, which includes species of electro-magnetic

the the

waves

of wireless telegraphy

and

chemically Rays of light by

active ultra-violet
are

of heat radiation, X-rays. rays, and

only

distinguished from
wave

forms the

the fact that their

length

these aUied falls within


kinds of lengths

interval, whereas above-mentioned other dectro-magnetic oscillations have other wave

characteristicof them.
a

To make

useful and frequently adopted how Fig. I, showing the different kinds

the connection clearer, scheme is indicated in


of electromagnetic

distributed are over the wave-radiations lengths. Here we note two gaps entire scale of wave in the extensive spectrum of electro-magnetic oscillations,

which

Thus

far

we

single wave is missing, however, oscillations


are

belong to varieties of rays not yet detected. have out the co-ordination pointed of lengths with various kinds of rays. What
is that ideas of electro-magnetic fuUy explained. is it What
our

yet ? Not that oscillates ; is it electricity or magnetism do not find electridty itself osdllating in exactly ; we find electric force and ^we wave an electro-magnetic
not
"

-1,000,000

cm.

-100,000

cm.

Waves

of wireless

telegrajdiy
cm.

-10,000

"1000

cm.

Hertzian

waves

produced

in laboratory
.

Heat-rays

(ultra-red)

-o'oooi

cm.

Light-rays
....

Ultra-violet

-o-ooooi

cm.

rays

-o'oooooi

cm.

-o-ooooooi

cm.

X-rays
"o'oooooooi cm.

o'ooooooooi

cm.

7-rays
"o'oooooooooi cm.

Fig.

I.

ON

THE

NATURE

OF

LIGHT

13

magnetic force. Let us explain what we are to understand by this. Bodies charged with electricity attract or repel each other, according to the unlike or hke sign
of their charges. our minds, let us negative
of small

illustrate and imagine a metal

To

to fix this idea in

sphere charged with


close proximity

electricity,and placed particles, for instance

in the

pith-baUs,
metal

which
sphere

are

also charged
attract

with

electricity. Jhe

will

the

particles charged

with positive electricity,

repel those negatively charged ; an electric force the surroundings acts on of the sphere, and we say : the sphere charged with electricity produces an electric

and

field around

it.

The

force acting

on

small

particle

carrying a unit of electric charge, at a particular point of the field,is called the electric fieldintensity or electric force at that particular poiat of the field. The tude magniand

of

course,

direction of the electric field intensity varies, in various parts of the field. The direction

of the field intensity or electric force in the field of a negatively charged ball is always directed towards the diminishing with the centre of the ball, its magnitude ball which produces field is at rest, and if its charge suffers no the electric and direction of electric force change, the magnitude at one particular point of the field remain the same ;
distance from

the

ball.

If the

but

as

we

have said before, it varies for different parts


say that the field intensity is constant variable with position. But it is not
an

of the field. We

with time, but difficult to imagine


time

and

charged

position. ball is shortly

electric field variable both with Let us suppose that the negatively
to

lose its charge

and

to

be

gradually recharged with positive electricity. Later is the charge of positive electricity to be again diminished

14

SPECIAL
reduced
to

THEORY
zero,
"

OF
^whereupon

RELATIVITY
the ball is again forth. What

and

with negative electricity,and so then with the ball's electric field ? When the charge of the ball is reduced to zero, the electric force will of course be zero, the charge and when
charged happens
of

the

ball becomes

positive, reversed, formerly


"

the

direction

of

the

electric force will be

particles that repelled, and


a

were

for positively charged be attracted will now

Thus, the field intensity in vice versa. distinct part of the field will gradually vary its magnitude and direction, and in this case we have to deal with

field which varies with position and time. Another here : the matter of importance should be mentioned ately effect of a change of charge is not transmitted immedia

contrary, it takes some little time to act at a distance. Hence, the when charge of the ball oscillates between positive and negative at a distinct moment values, and is reduced to zero
to
a on

distance ;

the

of time, will of

the

field intensity

at

very

great

distance

also be reduced to zero, though not until a if the changes in the charge short time later. Now of ball take place very quickly, the say, many miUion
course
"

that at a certain ^itwiU happen distance from the ball an electric field intensity corresponding to positive charge will be observed, whilst the ball itself is again charged negatively. At double the
times
a

in

second,

"

distance,

the

arising from
one

field intensity will of course be the one the negative charge the ball possessed

At three times the distance, the period earher. fieldintensity wiQ correspond to the last but one positive A moment charge possessed by the ball, and so on. later, when the ball has again changed its charge, the field intensities will again be reversed. Thus we see

ON
that

THE

NATURE
bears

OF
the

LIGHT
character

15

the

phenomenon
makes

motion, it as an

which

of wave it perfectly justifiabledesignate tb

electric wave. Exactly the same have

we

used electric field intensity, and electric valid for the analogous notions of field intensity, and magnetic magnetic

definitions and here for the conceptions

as explanations of electric field, waves, are

magnetic
waves.

also fidd,
can

We

repeat them word for word, only substituting magnetic for electric, and the words north-magnetism and southfor positive and magnetism negative electricity respectiv
of every such velocity of propagation for electric and magnetic action is also exactly the same fields, being 300,000 km. in the second ; i.e. when the

The

ball

its charge, the direction of the fieldintensity will be reversed at a distance of i m. after the threehtmdred-miUionth Now this is part of a second.
reverses

exactly
and

the

velocity

this coincidence leading to the conclxision that other than


can

of propagation of rays of light, one was of the first indications


rays

light

electro-magnetic be said to be a

waves,

of light so that
and

are a

none

ray

of

temporally

spatially

fidd similar to the one variable electric and magnetic described This supposition has devdoped into above. It would of time. absolute certainty in the course take
us

too

far to enumerate
we

of this point of view, and

all the evidence in favour shall do better by giving a

detailed For
we

the have

mechanism purpose of illustration, we fictitious apparatus at our


account

of the

of light. that shall suppose disposal, of minute of


a

ray

dimensions, dectric and


two

permits us to analyse exactly the magnetic field of a ray of light. We require which

tiny test

partides,

one

charged

with

electridty.

16

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF
and
a

RELATIVITY

the other with magnetism,

help of which
part of
us,
a

we

can a

measure

contrivance with the the force acting on these less than provide
a
a

particles, within

space

of time
next

billionth
source

light,and
of
so

second. set it at

We
a

must

of

distance of several metres

in front

that its rays strike us horizontally. We then place the tiny ball charged with electricity, and the tiny magnetic pole straight in front of us and alongside of each other, and we happens. We what observe shall
"

with
observe

our

tiny apparatus

that

forces

are

exerted

on

both

particles,

each other, and the ray of the ray of light. Thus, supposing horizontally, then the electric us of Ught to approach the particle will be pulled vertically upwards, and
particle horizontally from right to left. The action of the forces in these directions is only maintained for an inconceivably short time ; after the magnetic

to

^forces which act perpendicularly to the direction of propagation

billionth part of a second the action is wards, downreversed, the electric particle is then puUed and the magnetic particle from left to right.
thousand
all is again reversed, and so forth at the immense rate of about five hundred billions of oscillations In this way we describe the per second. may

The

next

moment

for a given point. To of this phenomenon we ascertain the space dependency, must imagine other particles to be available besides the first two, these

time-process

being placed at different points of the ray of Hght. We should then find that all such particles, which, together with the firstpair, are placed at an equal distance from the
source

i.e. aU

of light, will oscillate in the same phase, those charged with electricity will be pulled
"

simultaneously

upwards,

all those charged

with

mag-

ON
netism
we

THE

NATURE
to

OF

LIGHT
so
on.

17 But if

simultaneously
a

the left, and

to the source pair of particles slightly nearer a the of light (at distance which we shall call l/znearer they wiU oscillate in the opposite phase to the source), the electric particle in our original pair, i.e. when

place

the electric particle pair is pulled upwards, standard pair is being pulled downwards, and so on. of the nearer to the source A third pair of particles, nearer of light by
oscillate like the first pair, etc. We / the wave length of the light. This call the magnitude varies for different colours ; the Umits for red and at the beginning of this chapter. violet were mentioned
an

amount

I, wUl

of the electric and magadd that the magnitude netic field intensities decreases with the distance from the source shall then have fully indicated of light, we
we on space and time, and qualitatively their dependency we shall have suf"dently described the inner mechanism be briefly recapituThe whole can lated of a ray of hght. transversal thus : rays of light are oscillations

If

of electric and magnetic force. it is quite out of the question for any Of course analysis of a ray of light in the way here indicated to be

actually carried out ; but there are a sufiicient number of indirect proofs, which point to the correctness of the For the physicist, these ideas ideas developed above.
thus have instance, transmitted degree of certainty as, almost the same that infectious diseases the hj^othesis
for
are

by bacteria has for the medical man. The preceding description of the mechanism of a ray of light teaches us that in the case of Hght, quite apart from the far greater velocity of propagation and the have to deal with an entirely length, we smaller wave different kind of oscillatory process from that of water
2

18
or

SPECIAL
sound-waves.
of
a

THEORY
Sound-waves body

OF

RELATIVITY
consist
of

the

movement

material

(air,ater, w

rock,

which etc.)

undergoes

the

case

electric material something and time.

In periodic changes. spatial and temporal and the of Ught, however, it is the magnetic force which periodically. Nothing

change

nor

concrete

abstract, a As we are
vacuo
"

oscillates in a ray of Ught : it is force varying periodically in space quite able to imagine the existence

of force in

e.g.the gravitational action of the sun planetary space to the remotest reaches through empty orbit and beyond, and the earth attracts a body in an evacuated vessel
"

of the readily conceive We thus see existence of a variable force in vacuo. duction are that we able entirely to dispense with the introso

we

can

of the of oscillations of light. aether, as the transmitter Formerly thus : Rays ran the arguments of Hght be oscillations, consequently to been have proved
of
a

hypothetical

substance,

i.e. that

must exist to carry out these oscillations, something to oscillate. That for we cannot expect nothing call something which oscillates in hght, we aether."
" "
"

One

thing,

however,

had
was

been

unknown
concrete

something
substance. assume that
out

not

overlooked, viz. the necessarily bound to be a

if

we

shall find it justas inteUigible it is something abstract in Ught We

carries which direction and

oscillations

(periodic variations
electric

and field intensity. Hence we need not talk of magnetic aether, the idea of an electro-magnetic field takes its
"

intensity),iz. the v

of the

place. In spite of this, the word has been retained aether in the terminology of modern phs^ics ; it designates field the very essence of the electric and magnetic
" "

ON
magnitudes. brevity and

THE
We

NATURE
propose,

OF

LIGHT
sake

19

therefore, for the

of

use simplicity, to make of the terms aether and aether oscillations in all that follows ; the reader will know what is meant after what has already been said.

It should be emphasised that the discussion on the nature of light in this chapter has nothing to do with the fundamental principles of the theory of relativity. It merely the purpose developments more
serves

of making readily

the subsequent

physical Essentially, the


could be made him anjrthing
appears
to
me,

elements of the clear to a non-physicist, to what light-rays as

comprehensible. theory of relativity


without telling

however,
idea
as

It really are. that the knowledge of such a


of

fundamental is
so

that

important,

that anyone

electro-magnetic who desires to know


also to ought Hence idea. the

waves something

of the theory
some

of relativity that

have

on enlightenment large space

comparativel

that

has

been

allotted
our

to

not subject

immediately

connected

with

theme.

CHAPTER

III

IS THE

PRINCIPLE
OPTICAL

OF

RELATIVITY PHENOMENA
?

VALID

FOR

EQUIPPED
following problem
:

with the definite ideas on the nature of light set forth in the preceding chapter, we are now the solution of the able to approach
Is it not

possible to detect the ments annuctl revolution of the earth, by laboratory experiwith the phenomena connected of the propagation of light ? On

the classical theory, according to which the aether is to be regarded as a real substance, we should expect
be successful. This is must experiment imagine an analogous easily understood, if we ment expericarried out in the sphere of acoustics.^ Let us board an ocean imagine ourselves once more on steamer that it travels without rolling so perfectly constructed

that such

an

and pitching, and with straight course uniform there is a whinjsical rich shall suppose velocity. We I'U bet you 10,000 old gentleman on board, who says : dollars that none of you can satisfactorily demonstrate
or
"

described in the follovdng could not actually experiment by human be performed observers, because of the infinitesimal involved. It might perhaps be realised with the time difference help of an automatic like those in sound-measuring apparatus, by the war the English during But this has use artillery.
'

The

nothing

to do with

the principle of the question.

OPTICAL
that this ship is moving, Thereupon
made
to win

PHENOMENA
without
all
sorts

21

rounding considering the surof attempts


are

in ^but all experiments made the ship's saloons turn out exactly as they would on dry land. Then somebody than gumption with more

the wager,

"

the

others after all ! deck ;


one

has

an

idea, and

"

exclaims

We'll

do

it

"

stem,
two.

in the middle is provided and told to fire at a particular moment.


one are

and The

passengers are chosen and taken on is stationed at the bow, a second at the between the other the third precisely midway with a pistol, The other two

Three

rate, going at the same provided with stop-watches to diately and have strict injunctions stop the watches immeThe man in the middle hearing the report. on fires his pistol, the other two stop their watches, and a

subsequent the watch

comparison at the bow The

of the two
was

watches
very

shows

that

stopped
The

than the watch


enough
:

at the stem.

slightly later explanation is simple

atmospheric air that transmits the sound does not take part in the ship's motion, hence a waves current of air from bow to stem is present on board the to travel at a quicker the sound waves ship. This causes
rate

towards

the

stem

than

towards noted.

the The

bow,
man
"

and

explains ship had have been pistol


was

the

difference in time
now

responsib

for this experiment no not been moving,

observed this was


have
won

noted between between them. fired midway The difference is a proof of the existence of motion, and as found without considering the surroundings, I the whimsical old gentleman Not so ! That is not adds : laid. I admit you haven't
"

If the explains : difference in time would the two watches, because the

wager." disagrees, however, and

The

the

way

my

wager

was

22

SPECIAL

THEORY
the

OF

RELATIVITY

considered depends experiment visually

but still your surroundings, entirely on the interaction between

mine the ship and the surroimding air. All you could deterthe relative motion between the two, and your was have furnished the same result had would experiment

the ship been


bow and
to stem.

at

anchor,

and

wind
proves Let us

had

blown

from

Your

experiment

I shall keep my money." settle their dispute between attempting prove the
If
we

nothing at aU, leave them to think about


to

them,

and

analogous existence of the

an

experiment

ourselves,

earth's annual
a

revolution.

look upon space,

through
space,
ocean

the earth then the

as

and corresponding liner. Let us interchange

world-ship travelling fiUing aether is the medium to the air surrounding the
vast terms

by

earth, ship's deck by and sound waves expect that a Ught-signal

replace ship by earth's surface, air by aether, luminous We waves. then may
sent
out

and

from

the

earth's

forwards at a slower rate will be transmitted in the direction of the earth's motion than in the opposite
surface

direction.

Just

as

current

of air sweeps

the
an

deck

of the moving ship from bow to stem, so must drift be present at the earth's surface in a

aetherdirection

opposed

through

earth's motion, when the placid aether. Before we

to the

as

of actually performing well to consider the meaning

the sphere gUdes discuss the possibility the experiment, it will be of the
success or

failure

of such an attempt. been a positive one, of propagation than in motion

Let

us

assume

the result to have

i.e. that there exists a slower rate of light in the direction of the earth's

the
a

opposite
new

certainly constitute earth's annual

motion,

would proof of the existence of the accomand furthermore, one

direction.

That

OPTICAL
plished by
means

PHENOMENA
a

23

of

laboratory

and stars. astronomical considerations Has, then, the principle of relativity, as it was discussed in the first chapter, been violated ? We stated there : It is impossible to perceive the existence of motion If we take up without reference to the surroundings."
"

experiment, of the smi

and

out with-

the

point

of view
we can

his wager,
experiment

old of the whimsical assert in the present

fellow
case

laying
"

This

tween only to the interaction bethe apparatus experiment, and the used for our finally arrived at aether ; the result we surrounding between was merely the existence of a relative motion
reference

had

The more. aether, and nothing principle We see that of relativity has thus not been violated." to a dispute of words, in the end the question amounts the meaning of the restriction "without concerning earth
and reference to the surrormdings." confusion

shall now of words, we form, further no containing relativity into another in which experiment ambiguities, and one wiU clearly For this purpose we shall decide one way or the other.

In order to avoid any bring the principle of

introduce

new

useful later
"

on.
a

as

itself notion, which will also prove in Chapter I that such stateWe saw ments " " in motion body a body or at rest
"

need
as

an

addition to complete

them,

namely,

or what this state of motion To describe the position or motion body is always required (orat least

to

the assertion of rest is referred. of a body, another


fictitious, distinct

which can be referred system of lines in the universe), to in stating distances or velocities. In general it is
the material
structure
on

which

executing be run on

our

measurements.
a

situated whilst If, lor instance, a race


state

we

are

board

ship, and

we

that the victor

24

SPECIAL
a

THEORY
lo
m.

OF
per

RELATIVITY
second,
we

attained
as
a

velocity of

understand

that this velocity is relative of course to the ship's deck. (The velocity of the runner with be lo m. reference to the earth would per second,
matter

plus the of data

as minus the velocity of the ship, according runner travels with or contrary to the direction The body to which the motion of the or

ship.)

refer is called the

body

of reference

or

system

the earth experiments, itself is our body of reference ; for the sound ment experithe body mentioned above, the moving ship was Thus we may state the principle of reference, and so on.
of relativity in the following form
:

of reference. In our ordinary

laboratory

In

different systems

rectilinearly with to take place in respect each other, all natural processes exactly the same way. principle of relativity, as here stated, would certainly be violated if it could be proved that rays of light on the earth are propagated more quickly in one direction than in another. partaking Measured from
a

moving of reference

uniformly and

The

system

of reference not

result would certainly not processes in that system of reference would take place in a different way from that occurring on the earth, a have just we result contradictory to the statement made.
"

this of the earth's motion, be obtained ; hence physical

furthermore, that the question of the vaUdity or non-validity of the principle of relativity, in its modified
see,

We

form, includes the problem of the existence of an aether. For. if we say the aether is a real substance, we must have the possibility of perceiving it directly or indirectly,
even

though

it need

not

be

tangible

or

ponderable. of per-

Now

if its real existence is in any

way

capable

OPTICAL
ception,
we

PHENOMENA

25

expect that a system of reference be distinguished relatively to which it is at rest must from others relatively to which it is in motion. That, however, be a contradiction would of the principle
must

of relativity.

If this is

so,

then

substantial aether is of no use to us. II that the aether-hypothesis can be entirely dispensed of light-processes ; indeed, with for the comprehension
if the

the assumption of a in Chapter We saw

principle of relativity has general validity, the becomes not aether conception only superfluous, but directly as a hindrance. We then use the acts may

aether solely in its abstract meaning, mentioned word II. On the other hand, the at the end of Chapter of the existence of an aether as a real subassumption stance led us to expect that an experiment of the kind give a positive result {i.e. permit us would to discover an influence of the earth's motion on the if propagation of light),we could only succeed in accomplishing Before
at, it

described

the experiment with sufficientlyexact apparatus. final experimental decision had been arrived a
was

only

possible to set up

conjecture concerning

the general validity of the principle of relativity in its led the have latter form. These conjecturesmay

majority

of

physicists

to

assume

that

the

principle

of relativity was but not


ones.

mena, phenocertainly valid for mechanical for optical electro magnetic and
-

After these preliminary considerations, we now must turn to the question of the actual performance of the of light with the propagation A simple calculation shows that at the earth's surface. described Hteral analogue a of the sound experiment

experiment,

concerned

above

cannot

produce

any

satisfactory results in the

26

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF
a

RELATIVITY
million times greater

case

of light,since its velocity is

than

that of sound.^
must,

ground of experimenting the greatest possible length. Let us station the middle is to give the light-signal, on a experimentalist B, who
of
course,

We

chose

an

is placed in from the direction of the earth's motion 30 km. away the lull, and the other observer C is situated in the Both observers opposite direction, also 30 km. from B. hill visible from all sides.

The

observer

have

accurate

which them
place

rate, going at the same chronometers they stop the very instant the light-signal reaches

from

B.

To

ensure

accuracy

we

might,
of
a

in the

of observers,

imagine

contrivances

highly

sensitive nature

register the exact arrival of the ray of light automatically, and with Ughtning rapidity. Will a difference be noticed, then, between the two stopwhich clocks ? The
effect to be

the

sun

course,

can expected easily be calculated. The velocity of the earth's revolution around to 30 km. is, of amounts per second, which time the velocity of the hypothetical at the same

aether-drift. We

sound

fluence should expect this aether-drift to inrays of Ught in the same way as wind influences be propagated ; hence Ught would with a velocity
km.
per second

of 300,030

in the direction from

J5 to C

relatively to the earth's surface, and with a velocity of 299,970 km. per second in the direction from B to A.^
'

The

prove

advanced the numerically

more

reader may impossibility

consider of
a

it superfluous to direct experiment,

though" it may obvious for doing reasons good

be
so,

to

every because

But there are physicist. in this way we can get a of

better idea of the minuteness measuring-rods, * For the sake


that the value etc., required

of the effects, e.g. contractions by the theory of relativity.


is made assumption km: per second.

the of simjdicity of c is exactly 300,000

here,

OPTICAL
The
distances BA require and BC

PHENOMENA
are

27
so

each 30 km.,
from

that light
to

should

o'oooioooi

0-00009999 seconds from these times is o'oooooooa


millionth part of a second. accomplish this experiment, surpassing

seconds B to C.

The

and tween difference be-

A,

seconds, i.e. the fifty Before we could hope to

we

chronometers
a

our

should have to construct best clocks in accuracy

estimate is so discouraging the possibility of that the reader may well doubt an actual experiment of this kind, and will perhaps be satisfied to take it for granted that our presentour

miUionfold. The result of

numerical

day

technical

means

are

not

in point. And yet problem Michelson the experiment, a and gained performed Later, this definite result more than thirty years ago. became in physics, one of the most famous experiments imon portant account of its constituting the most perhaps

capable of solving the the American physicist

empirical evidence in favour of the principle of relativity. The idea is as follows : A ray of light falls on a glass-plate at an angle of 45", and is separated into two
of is propagated to the the glass and perpendicularly original direction, whereas the other part traverses the Both parts traverse glass plate and travels straight on.

parts ;

one

part is reflected at the surface

certain distances from their point of origin, and are then to their reflected in mirrors set up perpendicularly respective directions, so that they travel back along When the same path and meet again at the glass plate.
a

ray of light is split into two

rajTS in this way,

and

the

are observed parts re-unite, certain optical phenomena of the parts lags called interference fringes, and if one behind by an infinitesimaUy small fraction of a second.

28

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

this gives rise to shifts of these fringes, which are readily In this way, Michelson compared the time perceptible. taken by one ray of light in travelling to and fro parallel
to the direction of the

other earth's motion, with that of anray which travelled to and fro in the perpendicular direction. was (The experiment carried out in the

floated in was way : The entire apparatus free from vibration, and capable mercury, so that it was A thorough investigation was then made, of rotation.
following
to decide

any shifts of the interference fringes brought into various occurred, when the apparatus was positions relative to the direction of the earth's motion.) The The were results obtained absolutely negative.

whether

attempts
exact

were

and

in subsequent years with sensitive apparatus, and finally, Morley repeated contrivances
even so

more

and

Miller tried with

accurately
to
a

adjusted,
part

that

an

effect amounting

hundredth

have been detectable. must value of the computed But there was not the slightest trace of a non-uniformity in the propagation the Michelsonof light. Hence

decided with certainty in favour of experiment the validity of the principle of relativity for optical ones. processes, as well as for mechanical
It would concerning depended
not, of
course, a

Morley

such
on one

be convincing, if our fundamentally important

decision problem

experiment

conscientious its execution. incidental accessory circumstance, of that some body which nohad thought, had paralysed the effect of the earth's experiment, and that the existence motion in this one of this motion might stillbe proved in some other way by laboratory experiments. To begin with, it might for instance have been possible to suppose

only, however exact and For it might stiU be possible

the moving

earth

OPTICAL

PHENOMENA

29

to carry sether along with it, justas a body moving in liquid carries along liquid particles on a its surface there would be only owing to friction. In this case

very small relative velocity between sether and earth at the earth's surface, so that the negative result of the Michdson experiment could readily be understood,
a

without regarding it as decisive for the validity of so important The possiand far-reaching a law of nature. bility of such an explanation constituted the theme of
close investigation, but the results obtained conilict with other facts of experience, so
come

into

that

the

that the earth cairries sether along with it assumption A number be discarded. must of other experiments quite different from that of Michelson and Morley were devised and carried into
execution,

but

any without of these had

exception, gave negative to do with the propagation nothing


concerned

all of them, results. Some of

light, but

were

with

other electro-magnetic
of the most of portant im-

processes. It is of interest to notice that some doctrines fundamental and

took their origin in chemistry tion The science of the elements, which forms the foundafrom the unsuccessful attempts of chemistry, arose lead and other common of the alchemists to convert metals

ph5reics and failures. experimental

into gold, and the law of the conservation of fruitless efforts to effect perpetual energy originated in In the same way, Einstein, as a consequence of motion. the negative results of the aforementioned experiments,
is not conclusion : The dilemma nor can the due to want of sldllon the part of physicists, be insufficient development of our technical knowledge
came

to the following

at

fault.

The

fundamental

cause

lies rather in the

30

SPECIAL

THEORY
of

OF

RELATIVITY
by laboratory

absolute

impossibility

determining

the influence of the rectilinear component of the earth's motion in any physical phenomena soever, whatbecause the principle of relativity is valid for all
experiments

natural processes, and not only for those connected formerly supposed. mechanics, as was

with

CHAPTER

IV

THE

LAW

OF

THE

CONSTANCY
OF

OF

THE

VELOCITY
discovery

LIGHT

THE

that the special principle of rdati\'ity is valid for the entire range of physics is in itself far more satisfactory than our former
according
to which

it is vaJid only for one part of ph3reics, namely, mechanics, and not for any We are thus led to ask : Why, then, were we other. of be valid for optical processes ? opinion that it cannot assumption,

aether hypothesis was responsible knew for this. We with certainty that rays of light deduced hence are the oscillatory processes, and Without
doubt

the

erroneous

conclusion and
"

that

there

must

be

something

substantial to carry out these oscillations, being the aether. As long as we this something accept the notion of an aether, the analogy with the board on experiment ship would necessarily sound
concrete
"

the validity of If we the principle of relativity for optical processes. accept the principle of relativity (and that we must, if
appeal
us,

to

and

thus lead

us

to doubt

we

are

to understand

mentioned

the negative result of all the experiments in the last we must give up

chapter),

the hj^othesis
rajre of Ught

of to be

and

magnetic

substantial aether, and consider no than oscillations of electric more II contains a field intensity. (Chapter

32

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

detailed description of what this means.) To complete the description of this process, we must state the and this again of the waves, velocity of propagation indicate the system has no meaning, unless we of the hght is propagated reference relative to which have we should with that velocity. Formerly said :
"

relatively to the aether," in

an

analogous

way,

as

sound

is propagated per second the former

330 m. velocity of approximately the aether, in relativdy to the air. Now sense of the word, has lost its significance,

with

longer refer to it when giving a precise devise statement must of the velocity of light. We a more our of reference, for which suitable system

hence

we

can

no

statement

The

of the velocity of light shall be valid. taught and Morley experiment of Michelson

us

that rays of Ught from a terrestrial source, which takes in all directions part in the earth's motion, are propagated with equal velocity. We might, therefore, be inclined to say : Waves of light are "transmitted with a from the source definite velocity as measured of light. the present statement The difference between and the

light has a distinct according to which be made clear by velocity relative to the aether, may both alternatives once more with our example comparing of the propagation of sound along the deck of a moving
former
one,

ship.

Sound

waves

have

distinct velocity
;

of propagation
are

relatively to

the atmosphere

they

not,

therefore, transmitted uniformly in all directions along deck on board ship, but travel more the moving quickly than towards the bow the stem towards of the ship. is not the same in velocity of propagation every direction relative to that sjretem of reference (the deck), of sound. which is at rest relatively to the source

Thus

the

LAW
We find
an

OF
analogue

VELOCITY

OF

LIGHT

88

to this in the former

thesis, aether hypo-

the correctness of which would have required a If, on the positive result for the Michelson experiment. board ship had been on the experiment other hand,
carried out and had
not

in such a way that the velocity of the bullet from the revolver the velocity of the sound

the experimentalist, who measured, whereby is stationed in the middle, firesboth forwards and backwards,
then

been

between

the

difference would velocities of the two


no

have

been

noticed

the influence of air resistance.) definite velocity relative to a system a

shots. The buUets

(Neglecting
move

with

of reference at This kind of prorest with respect to the marksman. pagation to the last proposed hypothesis corresponds light, with the difference, of course, that concerning process, and are not, in rays of fight represent a wave
use material fike a bullet ; the simile we characterises only the kind of propagation, but not the The hypothesis that light is nature of the process.

themselves,

transmitted system
source

distinct velocity with respect to a of reference, which is at rest relatively to the by the Swiss physicist of fight, was advanced

with

advantage of his theory Hes in the fact that harmony it is in complete with the principle of relativity. According to this hypothesis, rays of fight from
Ritz.

The

terrestrial source away


or

velocity

always travel with a definite wouM from it, independently the of whether It would then be

the existence of the earth's motion by experimen on the propagation a of light-rays from be for observers on board as it would terrestrial source,

earth moves to discover

not.

justas

impossible

the existence of the ship's motion ship to determine the velocity of bullets fired from the by measuring
3

84

SPECIAL

THEORY
The

OF

RELATIVITY

deck

negative result of Michelson's experiment would thus be easily imderstood. The Ritz theory, however, leads us to another conclusion, one and hence which conflicts with experience, of the ship.
"
"

For to give up this hjrpothesis also. obUged to our more purposes of illustration, let us revert once it is shall suppose ship. We simile of the moving the coast, and parallel to it. Bullets fired sailing near
we are

the middle of the ship will travel fore and aft with But let us suppose equal speed for observers on the ship. of observers posted on land, and provided with means from
some

kind

fired from

for measuring the ship. For

the

velocity of these observers

projectiles projectiles

direction will travel more quickly If we than those fired in the opposite direction. call the velocity of the bullet relative to the gun q, and the will velocity of the ship v, the bullets fired forwards have the velocity q-\-v, and those fired in the opposite Let us apply direction q-v, for the observer on land.

fired in the forward

According to the Ritz optical phenomena. theory, the velocity of rays of light from a star which is from as the earth must, the measured approaching earth, be greater than that from a star which is moving
this to

This deduction has been tested, both from us. away for rays of light from radially moving for stars, and terrestrial sources those emitted by moving of light.
of the velocity of light on the state of of hght could be detected, and of the source motion be maintained. On therefore the Ritz theory cannot No dependency fact based on the other hand, a new and important experience has been obtained : the velocity of light in has always the value c vacuo 300,000 km. per second,
=

and

is quite

independentof

the state

of

motion

of

the

LAW
source
"

OF

VELOCITY
Einstein

OF
designates

LIGHT
this law
as

35

of

light.^

the

* Principle of the Constancy of the Velocity of Light," and regards it as a fundamental principle of nature, to the Principle of Relativity. equal in importance

Together,

tion principles constitute the foundapillars of the Special Theory of Relativity. It is important to notice that these two fundamental

these two

principles rest
to exact

sensitive
trust

the safest and surest ground known by the most science ; they are supported the most exact and optical experiments
on

astronomical
our own

measurements.

If
we

we

can

in

any

way

experience,

must

confidence in the validity of these two point deserves special emphasis, because

absolute principles. This


we

have

shall

soon

have
*

occasion to doubt
to
our own

their correctness.
experience,
this

is valid when the is the earth, but owing to the validity of system of reference the principle of relativity it holds good also for all systems of in uniform to the earth. relatively rectilinear motion reference to complete On we : the description p. 32 said of this process, According
"

of propagation of the waves, indicate the system this again has no we unless meaning, and the light is propagated relative to which of reference with that We are now able to state that light is propagated velocity."
we

must

state

the

velocity

with

the

velocity

relatively
move

to all the above-mentioned

systems respect is here for all

of reference which to each other. " For the sake

uniformly

and
the

rectilinearly with

The of. spoken kinds of electro-magnetic

of brevity only law mentioned,


waves.

velocity of light however, holds good Chapter (Gf. II.)

CHAPTER

THE

CONFLICT

BETWEEN

THE

TWO

MENTAL FUNDA-

PRINCIPLES
has been present everj^hing plain deduction from sailing. The of conclusions laws from our and of general experiments,
to

UP

the

in natural quite common something in greater practical science (moreover, branches of much importance then the present), and the of outsiders

experience,

is

majority

rarely trouble their minds in the least about such The fact which distinguishes the theory of matters. relativity and liftsit above the level of everyday experience
when we consider the matter find that it is quite impossible for both
:

is this

more

we

closely, fundamental each

principles to be vaUd other ! The

together, for they contradict

the two is fundamentally contradiction between the Ritz theory and the facts as that between the same
of experience.

Let

us

again

develop

it.

By

way

of

change choose

we measurement, convenient and more for purposes of illustration a railway moves

shall train,

which track.

with constant velocity along Ught-signal is sent out from the

straight

the train at a given moment, both by observers measured stationed


on

middle of its velocity is to be and in the train and others According


to

the

embankment.
36

the

TWO

FUNDAMENTAL

PRINCIPLES

87

principle of relativity, phjreical processes must take place in the moving in a train precisely as they would
train ; hence stationary measured rays of light, as by observers situated in the train, must be propagated both forwards and backwards with the same velocity,

just as
however,

they

According

be if the would to the other of the two


velocity of light should be the same

train

were

stationary.
principles, from the

fundamental
as

the

embankment of the motion

measured both in the direction

because
motion

of the train and in the contrary direction, it ought to be independent of the state of
source

demands two of light. These contradict each other, for if the speed of the train be in the direction of the V and an effect be propagated in train's motion with the velocity c (measured the train),

of the

then the

we

must

find

(asmentioned
from
the in the
us

in the last embankment

chapter)
to

velocity
01 c-v common

c+v,
Sound and
we

measured a propagated
sense

be

teaches

contrary direction. be so, that it must

this classical law may


call

it)can

velocities with which Let us imagine the roofs of railway in such a way to form as together Then
a

of the addition of velocities (as for all be tested and confirmed have to deal in everyday life. we carriages joined a bicycle track.

cyclist, according to the direction in which he traversed the entire length of the train, would naturally by an observer possess quite different velocities as judged

We can see no reason the embankment. why this should not hold for light also, and if we had not made up our minds at the end of the last chapter to trust the
on

two

fundamental
"

principles,
are so

we

should

be incHned
one

to

say : them

As

they be

obviously

contradictory,

of

must

wrong."

(From

the

point

of view

of

38

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF
both
our

RELATIVITY
be

logic, they
other hand,
must

might of course if we adhere to


our

wrong.)

Oii the
we

two

principles, then

and admit so that the apparently obvious analogy of the cyclist have on the roofs of the moving railway carriages can no possible validity for light. suppress

wonted

mode

of thought,

In order analyse
more

to

velocity of embankment. the train, we

shall the closely the process of measuring light-signal from the train and from the

see

how

this

can

be possible,

we

To
must

measure

the

station an in the middle who sends out the train, besides the man hght-signal, and all three would have to be provided way, observers on the embankment stationed at certain intervals would have to be provided All these clocks with exact clocks. would have to be timed absolutely alike. At a given

velocity of light from observer at each end of the

with exact

clocks.

In the

same

moment,
one

say,

justas

the middle

of the observers stationed on light-signal must be sent out, and all observers must stop their clocks the very instant' they see the flash. We could then

of the train is passing the embankment, the

tion, calculate the velocity of Ught in each direcboth from the train and from the as measured by means of the differences in the times embankment,
distances. and the measured in Chapter III that We saw
exact

our

clocks

are

not

nearly

enough for a direct measurement of the velocity of light, and for the present experiment, conditions are On the one hand, the base unfavourable. stillmore of our observations is much smaller than in the experiment

described there, and on the train is a thousand earth.


Hence,

the other hand, the velocity of times smaller than that of the the differences of time to be measured

TWO
are

FUNDAMENTAL
smaller

PRINCIPLES
were

89

much

than
have

they

in that
a

case,

so

that
more

our

clocks would

to be about
are,

billion times
us

exact

than they actually


measurements.

to enable

to carry out

the necessary
our are

this does not satisfy conscience in relation to the logical difftculties which involved. We cannot srffer two laws of nature to
the discrepancies
are

But

contradict each other, even when so small as to be imperceptible


means.

by

modem

technical

therefore, at the outset, take account of the possibility of our having clocks and measuringthe velocity of light with rods exact enough to measure
must,

We

the necessary precision. One other thing we require in

experiment, and that is,that the observers at the ends of the train, as well the embankment, as those at different stations on shall be provided with clocks which not only go precisely,

our

but

which

are

all timed exactly alike,


"

and

this is

an

able to show idea of simultaneity brought


was

essential. Einstein

strict analysis of the the solution of the apparent


a

that

contradiction

between

the two

fundamental

principles.

CHAPTER

VI

ANALYSIS

OF

THE

CONCEPT

OF

SIMULTANEITY

FIRST
foimd, up
when
m

of all let it be stated that a contradiction between the principle of relativity and the law of constancy of the velocity of light can only be that exactly timed different places. Two clocks are
we assume

if

clocks exactly

are

set

timed

in clock are simultaneously position as the hands of the other precisely the same If we place both clocks before us on the table, clock. the two can we events readily discern whether ^the of the
one
"

the hands

positions of the hands


twelve, of the

stroke of and the corresponding positions of the hands The ^take place simultaneously. other clock
"

of

one

dock

at the

simultaneity

thus needs no time, then same

in close spatial proximity events of two further definition ; if I see them at the

they

take

does it mean what different places occur

when

But place simultaneously. in we events say that two

by

the following

? simultaneously drastic example how

Let

us

illustrate
are

we justified

in asking this question. On the 21st of February 1901, a new star became visible in the constellation of Perseus, Persei by the astronomers. This and was called Nova
star, which
mass

cause

certainly been in existence as a dark previously, had been set aglow by some unknown and had thus become visible. The flaming-up of had

ANALYSIS
the star undoubtedly
appearance delay bemg
was

OF
took

SIMULTANEITY
place some by human time

41

before its

observation, the equal to the time-interval needed by light to travel from the star to the earth. The question arises
place ; what date on the earth coincided with the kindling of the star ? Let us suppose that it were possible to determine the distance
as

discovered

to when

this event

took

of the star accurately, and that the result be expressed in kilometres. We can then calculate, for instance, that the hght
exactly thirty years to reach the earth, and the actual date of the birth of the star would be the 2ist of February 1871. The birth of the star and the date, the aist of February to be 1871, are supposed

took

Can this be events. simultaneous certainty ? If the principle of the

maintained constancy

with of the

unresult must doubtedly velocity of hght is valid, then our be correct ; for, according to this principle, the time required by a ray of light to travel from a point

be equal to the point B will always l^^i light c, qmte AB, divided by the constant velocity of independently or not the two of whether points are
^
to
a

executing a common But supposing that


we

of this principle, or did not believe in it, ^how then ? Let us take
we
"

motion. knew nothing

up the point of view of the old aether theory, and assume that our earth, together with the entire visiblesystem of fixed stars, and including the new star, are carrying
out
a common

the

earth

rectiUnear motion in the direction from We are towards the star. then advancing

the rays of light coming from the star, and hence Thus the birth of these will need less time to reach us. the star did not take place on the 21st of February 1871, towards but it may, for instance, have taken

place

on

the aist of

42

SPECIAL
Let

THEORY
us

OF
on

RELATIVITY

th6 other hand, that the common motion of earth and star is in the opposite direction. We are then retreating from the rajre of suppose, hght
new
on

July 1871.

need longer to reach us, and the event of the have happened sooner, star must say, for instance, Now Michelson's experithe 15th of October 1870. ment,
; they

and taught
of
us

earth

from it, principle of relativity deduced that we could not detect the combined motion Thus, without the aid of and fixed stars.
the

the law of the constancy of the velocity of light, we are in a position to decide on principle, what date on never the earth was simultaneous with the birth of this new
star.

that principle, it is thus quite meaningless to speak of the simultaneity of two events spatially far apart The philosopher will perhaps take another .^^ Without
mind not being If I hit this table with my able to prove simultaneity. instant a prominence hand and at the same bursts forth point of view. may say
:

He

"

Never

the star Sirius,then these are simultaneous events, to know, all my if I never life,whether the even come latter event happened is the philever at all." Now osopher
from

in the
to prove

right?

He

might

be, if the

inability

the simultaneous occurrence of both events was only due to the imperfection of our present-day technical But this case is different. It would be fundamentally means. quite impossible to determine the simultaneity of spatially distant events, without availing ourselves of
that there is no assuming other effect of than light to bring us tidings of distant events. higher velocity to human is no In point of fact, according there experience, In all this
we are
'

such than

effect.
c,

If

one,

should

ever

is propagated which with be discovered, then the fall. But

velocity

greater

of the theory happen.

of relativity would

entire structure this is not likely to

ANALYSIS

OF

SIMULTANEITY

48

of the velocity of light ; and what cannot essentially be observed, cannot be said to exist. We might perhaps concede to the philosopher the idea of absolute simultaneity of spatially distant
events
as

the law of the constancy

be proved.

pure But

thought fiction,though
even

then

we

must

it could never discard this idea of

absolute simultaneity if it leads to contradictions between the facts of experience, as is actually found in practice. The matter is different, however, if we retain the If principle of the constancy of the velocity of Ught. this be valid, then the lapse of time between the birth
on earth is perforce and its perception equal to the distance earth-star, divided by the velocity of whether or not both of light c, quite independently

of

the star

We thus see motion. Hence that it is this principle that defines simultaneity. the notion of the simultaneity of events spatially
are

bodies

executing

common

is not given a priori, but is defined by the principle of the constancy of the velocity of light. It be defined most may simply thus : Events A aiid B,
separated different places, are simultaneous observeis stationed at equal distances from A and B the occurrence of both events simultaneously.

which

occur

at

i"
see

the reader perceive the far-reaching importance of this principle of the constancy of the velocity of light, far more than a mere assertion conand that it means cerning
more much itdefines than acquaint us with a mere property of Ught the fundamentally connection between spaceand time. We see, then, that the experiment of measuring the velocity a

Does

physical

phenomenon

It does

"

cannot of Hght from the train and from the embankment lead to any contradiction with the law of the constancy of the velocity of light, for the observers' clocks can be

44

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY
are

exactly timed only with the hdp of this law, i.e.they by definition never timed exactly aUke, unless measurements performed with them confirm this law. The discussion in this chapter
contains
us

the

essence quint-

of the problem of relativity. Let the matter briefly. Formerly, our minds
to

recapitulate were trained taneity simul-

the

persuasion

that

the

conception

of the

given a priori, of spatially distant events was that it had an absolute meaning, and thus required no previous definition. In the application of this idea

however, we a encounter simultaneity, the principle of relativity and contradiction between the principle of the constancy of the velocity of light, be wrong, so that at least one of these principles must
of absolute the absolute idea of simultaneity is to be abandoned. The importance of Einstein's work lies in the fact that, of these alternatives, he gave preference to the two
or

fundamental than
to

principles based apparently

the

experience, rather self-evident but unproven

on

our

conception follows as

constancy have been


regard
to

His idea was of absolute simultaneity. The principles of relativity and of the : of the velocity of Ught are correct, for they proved
our

Without experimentally. previous habit of thought, we


time
or more

having have
to
a

conceptions of space and modify our way that the velocity of light in two

in such

systems

uniformly moving with respect to each other always hgs the same value c, irrespective of direction. How these modifications are to be carried out, is the
of the special theory inferences that can

subject

of relativity ; it contains all those be logically deduced from the fundamental principles.

simultaneous

existence of both

CHAPTER

VII

THE

SPECIAL SUM-TOTAL
THE

THEORY
OF THE

OF

RELATIVITY:
FROM

DEDUCTIONS PRINCIPLES

TWO
left

FUNDAMENTAL

WE
our

the observers in the train and on in the lurch, after we had been embankment fuUy persuaded that they can in no way upset
our

of the validity of the two fundaniental principles, provided they perform the exact adjustment We must now revert to them of their clocks correctly.
conviction

again, and the

let them deductions

perform

measurements

to

strate demon-

resiilting from the co-existence In the firstplace, it is easy to show of both principles. that Einstein's rigid definition of the idea of the simultaneity

is not an absolute of spatially distant events but that it is only relative. Thus, when I say that one, the an event at a given place A (say earth)and another happen simultaneously, this statement at a place B (Sirius)
is valid only
at rest
are

who

for myself and for those observers Other observers, however, relatively to me. in motion will take another relatively to me,

point of view,
events
were

demonstrate

be quite right in saying : The two Let us to not simultaneous. proceed how it is that this results from Einstein's
and

definition ; but it should be pointed out that the differences of time-intervals with

forthwith which
we

46

SPECIAL
to deal here

THEORY
are
so

OF

RELATIVITY
the results far from are We

have

infinitesimal, that in the following

we of which shall speak being detectable by our

present-day apparatus.

shall suppose only one observer in the train, and him to be stationed of the train. exactly in the middle Electric lamps are set up on the embankment at two places A and B, their distance apart They the length of the train. are contact-levers, a flash of light the moment passes it, and the lamp B
convenient
so

being

equal

to

that

provided A the lamp

with

the beginning

emits of the train

the moment the end of the train passes it. An observer is st ationed on the embankment between A and B. The train travels

midway

Train
-+-

C
Fig.
2.

A'

of past, the lamps send out their flashes of light, waves both light are with the velocity c from propagated A and B, and reach the observer on the embankment
simultaneously. time, and same Thus

he

sees

both

events

at

the

if he has A
to

ascertained

by

measurement

that

the

places

then, according quite right in

and B are equi-distant from him, VI, he is the definition in Chapter

asserting that the flashes took place But in the train has the observer simultaneously. A, hence travelled a short distance towards meanwhile

from A reach him sooner than those rays of light coming from B, and he maintains quite correctly that coming did not take place simultaneously. the two events be raised : "Is following The this might

objection
correct

statement

also

from

the point

of view

of the

SPECIAL

THEORY
According
if
same an

OF
to

RELATIVITY
definition, two

47

Einstein theory ?
are

events

sees

simultaneous them at the

observer standing in the middle That is not the Ccise here, time.

for when the rays of light reach him, he is no longer in the middle between A and B." This latter argument, is not correct. however, The observer was stationed' midway

between

the lamps

at the instant they sent

out

their flashes of light ; it is quite immaterial what position the lamps take up with respect to him afterwards. To meet we the above-mentioned objection, attached to the beginning and end of the train ; the first of these sends out a Ught-signal time as the lamp the at A on exactly at the same
can

suppose

lamps

embankment, and justas it passes A, and the second lamp at exactly the same time as the lamp at B on the as it passes this lamp. (Inthis statement embankment, the idea of simultaneity
we are

presents with the

no

difi"culty,because

only

concerned

spatially proxinmte events.) in the least modify the succession not


seen

simultaneity of two This arrangement does of phenomena in the train is

The observer observers. doubt, situated midway between both now, without lamps ; if he observes that they emit their flashes of light at different times, he is quite right from he says : The flashes were point of view when
"

by

both

his
not

simultaneous." To the mark

difference

between

assertions

with

regard to simultaneity which are correct according to definition, and those which are not, the following our be added : A third observer D is supposed to be may stationed
nearer
on

to

A
A

the embankment, He, than to B.


sooner

and

to

too, wiU

be situated far see the flash of

light from

than

that from

B, but

he cannot

48

SPECIAL
that,

THEORY
as
a

OF

RELATIVITY

maintain

simultaneous, the two sources


take the

are the events not consequence, for he is not situated midway between of light. On the contrary, he must

AD difference of path between and BD account, and by doing so he will discover that for him too. events took place simultaneously

into

both

thus arrive at the conclusion : Two events which take place simultaneously for an observer at rest, do not for an take place simultaneously observer in motion. We

According

to the principle of relativity, the observer

in
at

the train is equally


rest, and

in justified
on

considering

himself

in motion ; the embankment hence, of course, the inverse assertion holds good : Two for an observer events which take place simultaneously the' observer in motion, do
not

take

observer at rest. The The observer's state a relative idea. whether


occur
or

for an place simultaneously idea of simultaneity is, therefore,


two

not

of motion spatially distant

mines deterevents

simultaneously
can

for him.

We

contact

generalise our result slightly,by supposing the of the lamp B to have a contrivance for delaying
an

it, so

that its flash of light will be emitted

instant

bUlionth part of a train passes it. In this case

(saythe

second)after

the end of the the flashes of light will not

for the observer on the embanksimultaneously ment (the either, but after a certain time-interval biUionth part of a ; for the observer in motion,
occur

second)

however,

the time-interval

former generalisation of our We said then : If the time-interval between statement. is equal to zero for an two spatially distant events observer at rest, it must

he is advancing towards This is an extension and

will be stillgreater, because the ray of light coming from A,

differ slightly from

zero

for

an

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY
we

49 have

In the more observer in motion. general case, When an the value observer at rest measures between two time-interval distant events, an
in

t for the

observer

a wiU measure slightly different value t' for the time-interval between This the same events.

motion

is caUed
*

the law of the relativity of time-measurement.^


exact

conmathematical analysis of the foregoing sideratio into detail concerning leads them ^without going K and K' to be two systems to the following : Let us suppose of in uniform to each rectilinear motion reference respect with two very long platforms gliding past each other along other, e.g.

more

"

"

line of separation. In both systems intervals along the Une of contact, set up at certain In addition, the clocks of the system going correctly. K' amongst themselves, as well as those of the system their straight
are

clocks

are

all of them K amongst themselves,

(Clocksare then going correctly exactly alike. when, with their help and with that of a standard measuringhght the velocity the measurement of of rod, results in the the clocks of one one system amongst value c.) Furthermore, then timedi exactly the following conare alike when another dition
to be

timed

holds the
moment

good when

A the

light-signal
clock

is sent

out

at

there shows stationed It must then arrive at a point B at the moment when the time t+r, t being equal to there shows stationed distance AB
c

point A at the time *. the clock

is going cora clock which possesses who rectly if is now to to compare the supposed with reference his clock with the motion of those K'-d.ock.% that he of motion traveller compares as a (In the same successively passes. way An

observer

at

he the theory with the station-clocks passes.) What follows : He will find that the is then as of relativity teaches his own by those clocks and differ in times registered watch his watch such
an a

way

that the K'-clocks


in K'
are

observer

wiU

retarded passes if-clocks are for him


result
"

he

Similarly, slowly. be able to state that the if -clocks which so that reference to his own with watch,
are

going

more

going

can

Clocks

be briefly summed in moving systems

This slowly than K'-c\ocks. up in the theory of relativity thus : go more slowly than clocks at rest."
more

50

SPECIAL
We

THEORY
quite

OF

RELATIVITY
also in the relativity

find something

analogous

deduce
of
a

of measurements from the preceding


as

be

train moving different from

easily considerations, that the length from the train itselfmust measured length
as we

of

lengp.

We

can

the

embankment.
This
short

For this purpose


is
a

from the measured be quite clear must


help
for

formulation
on

it is true, but
For, fully other C according

to

the other the theory

convenient hand it must

the with

memory,

be applied

i justifiedn looking
as

C would have to gain or then a and system lose with reference C, according as to whether to the one system in motion looked the other were or as upon and this was what the* antagonists as of the theory of relativity naturally regarded
"

in motion. clock in the

of relativity, every his own as at rest and system upon If, therefore, C be a clock in the system K',

caution. is observer

the
K,

logical contradiction. however, We consider, must

that

between of the motion position of their hands only at one for instance, just at the moment,

comparison

it is not sufficient for the two the clocks to compare


of time
"

particular moment
when

other;
certain

this comparison on must, intervals Then, of time. separated

the
of

clocks pass each be repeated contrary, at


course,

both

both

clocks

ar"

a close together, and not and comparison be carried out in this second can of their readings moment of in two different ways the dock C can time viz. either be compared

spatially

"

with passing happens with C,

that

clock given

of the
moment

system

K'

which

it happens

to be

at that

(timed

K'-clocks) or
to be

like
"

be compared passing at that special moment all K-clocks). The statement


can

exactly with that

with C', like all K-clock it which

(timed
of the

exactly theory of

relativity, that means indicated, That

Clocks

in moving

systems

the comparison leads to different

of C to C, results, in the

go more slowly," simply in the two different ways


sense

above

discussed.

it should be possible the fact that simultaneity K'. K'-clocks, therefore, for if-observers,

to arrive at different results is due to in K is different from in simultaneity are timed but alike for K'-observers,

not

and is of the of this antithesis measurement return

vice
same

versa.

The
as

kind

that

of length, subsequently VIII. to this in Chapter

to be

apparent absurdity of the relativity of discussed ; we shall

SPECIAL

THEORY
"

OF

RELATIVITY
"

51

from by is meant the train and measured from the embankment." If an measured observer in the train takes a measuring-rod, and begins laying it

what
"

buffer of the last car along the entire length of the train to the front buffer of the engine, then the figure representing the number of down
repeatedly
times

from

the back

laid down was measuring-rod wiU be the To from the train." length of the train, as measured the length from the embankment, measure we must the
"

determine

two

embankment, train past A,


simultaneous When

points A and that the passage and

of the end for an events observer


we

situated of the beginning of the train past


on

B,

so

on

the

of the B, are

the

ment. embank-

can poiats A and B, we determine their distance apart in the usual way, by the The result of a measuring-rod. repeated laying down is the length of the train as meaof this measurement sured

know

the

"

from

the lamps
"

In the embankment." A and B were at those

our

previous

exainple

by the beginning

and
an

points passed simultaneously by the end of the train

(i.e.
between

"

embankment).
these

simultaneous Hence

for
we

observer
measure more

must

the posted on the distance


precisely, the

lamps

(to speak

the edges of their contact contrivances), be, say, a hundred metres. We which we will suppose to then state : The lemgth of the train as measured may
to a hundred metres. from the embankment On amoimts the other hand, the flashes of light were not simultaneous events for an observer situated in the train. For this

distance between

than that of B. observer, the flash of A took place sooner he must Hence conclude that as the beginning of the than the end travelled train travelled past A sooner past B, the length of the train must be greater than the

52

SPliCIAL
For

THEORY
if the

OF

RELATIVITY
been

line AB.

length had

the

same,

the

; if, on simultaneously the other hand, shorter, the end of it than the beginning would travel past the point B sooner As this is not the case, the train past the point A.

lamps

would

have

passed the train were

been

must
one ensure

be longer than
metre

hundred
on

length, laid down

each of measuring-rods, To the embankment.

flashing of the lamps for the the simultaneous observer in the train, the lamp at A would have to be in the direction of the moved slightly farther forward moving train, i.e. farther away from S to a point A'.^ For the observer in motion the distance A'B wiU then be equal to the length of the train. Since AB is less
than length A'B,
we

have

the

following

results

(i)The

of the

embankment the train

train is smaller for an observer on the {i.e. equal to AB) than for an observer in

finds it equal to A'B). (2)For the is observer in the train, the length of the track AB the length of the train, whereas the smaller than as regards ^B equal to observer on the embankment

(who

the length of the train. shortened


appear
to
an

Hence
at

in objects
rest, and

motion

appear

observer
to
an

observer in necessarily arises from the other, because, according to the principle of relativity, both observers are equally shortened
in justified saying
:

objectsat rest (One result motion.

am

at rest and the

other is moving.)

This contraction of length occurs only in the dimensions lying in the direction of motion ; hence only of objects train is shortened, and not its the length of a moving The reason for this Ue5 in the fact height and breadth. that measurements of height and breadth do not involve The the detour over the determination of simultaneity.
'

CJ. Fig.

2.

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

53

observer in the train can determine the wheels in exactly the same way the
embankment
can

the gauge between on as the observer


distance between

determine

the

If the the rails,viz. by the use of his measuring-rod. wheels exactly fit the rails, both observers will agree that

the

gauge

between

the

between

the rails are


to

the carriages from


;

equal. the train

wheels and the interval To measure the height of


we can

simply

use

measuring-ro

we the embankment, ^ people in the train could fix might proceed as follows : from the top and a sharp point to projectsideways bottom The observer on the embankment of the cars.

measure

it from

slab, the surface of which is placed vertically and parallel to the train's motion, and so dose from the cars to the rails that the points
erects
a

large marble

projecting

scratch two

sharp Unes in the surface of the marble slab, as The distance between these Unes the train travels past.
as

is the height of the cars In a similar way measuring-rod with that in


in
a

from the embankmeasured ment. the comparison of a standard

at rest (the embankment) system in motion a system (thetrain) could be This process is quite definite, carried into execution. reversible, and can be repeated ad libitum, so that there
can

be

no

rest

and

difference of opinion between to an as observer in motion


or
as

an

observer the lengths


of any

at

of

measuring-rods

to the

dimensions

objects
State-

situated normally Let us recapitulate the results of this chapter.


1

to the direction of motion.

We

must

remind

the reader

once

more

that

are are we speaking only conceptual of which to our the comprehension experience concerning even expect to hear an relativity we may
"

the experiments According ones. of the theory

The

theory

of relativity is

nonsense,

of of this kind 3 objection for measurements such

as

those

described

above

cannot

be carried out."

54

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

of length and of time-intervals have no absolute We cannot reasonably maintain, for instance, meaning. that a pole has such and such a length ; we must always
ments state the motion

of the
can an we

objectmeasured
say
:

relative to the seconds and


an
"

Nor observer. elapsed between in New York.

event

A
exact

So many in London
we

of time event B
an

To

be

must

is the earth." situated on because between the time-interval the necessary, events A and B for an observer on a passing comet would have a different value. We do not, in this case, mean observer the events, i.e.the timeinterval between the arrival of rays of light or electric waves, which bring the observer tidings of both events.
the apparent that both observers carry the contrary, we presume out their measurements correctly, and take into account the time needed by light to reach them from the places

for add, This addition

interval between

On

where

the events

happened.

CHAPTER

VIII

THE

APPARENT

ABSURDITY
CONCLUSIONS

OF

THESE

THE
on

conclusions set forth in the last chapter present the quintessence of the special theory of relativity, which brought Einstein great celebrity
one

the

hand,
eyes

and of
a

many

attacks

with

the

philosopher,

Seen the other. indeed so they are


on

of two points of view revolutionary, that only one it is an be accepted : Either it is aU nonsense or forward step in our knowledge.

can

portant im-

On

the

objection

part of has been

some

philosophers, the raised against the theory, that it is


professional

in itself free from illogical, and not contradictions. is not true, and only shows That, however, that the It has been said, for has been misunderstood. matter instance
"

One

of the

that the events the other, however,


not

observers comes B took at A and


maintains

to

the

conclusion

place simultaneously, that they- did according


persons
to

take

Einstein

place both are

and simultaneously, when two right. Now

both they cannot contradictory statements, by academic This argument (advanced even critics) the difference the mistake involves of overlooking
If I say, absolute and relative statements. " My hand has five fingers," and somebody for instance,

make be right."

between

S5

56

SPECIAL
"

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

No, your hand has only four fingers," one be wrong, for my statement or the other must of course hand is an the number of fingers on my concerning else tells me,
But if a man at Cape Town says, absolute statement. is situated on Madagascar the right-hand side of Madagascar Africa," and another in Cairo says, lies
"

"

the left-hand side of Africa," they but both upholding contrary statements,
on

are are

apparently right from

point of view, because the idea of right or left to Einstein, the idea of simulis relative. According taneity is also a relative one, and has lost its absolute their
own

This relativity, however, does not meaning. the position taken up by the observer, as is the right and left, but to his state of motion.

refer to
case

with Certainly, for

all practical purposes, we may safely continue to consider the ideas of time and space as absolute, for, as will in Chapter X, the difference between be shown ments stateof time and
one

length for

in motion Similarly,

are,

observer at rest and for for all terrestrial events, always


an

immeasurably

small. it cannot

be

regarded

as

contradictory

to

measuring-rod which is longer for an observer the motion of the train train, than the metre measuring-rod at rest

logic, that

the

metre

shares on the
on

the

embankment, his own


the
train.

whereas

for

an

measuring-rod We famiUar are so

observer on the embankment is longer than the one in with


similar

to with regard other contradictions hardly realise them, as can be shown by the that we following trivial example : A calf and are the old cow distance from them, another grazing in a field. At some The firstcow are grazing. calf and another cow naturally

apparent relative ideas,

appears

to its

own

calf larger than the other

cow,

ABSURDITY
owing
to

OF

c6nCLUSI0NS

57

" Hence My the first calf says ; proximity. is larger than yours," and the other calf retorts : mammy is larger than yours." The calf's "No, my mammy involves only the angle subidea of magnitude tended seen, at its eye by the and if we accept the
" "

object

"

"

word

magnitude

in this

sense,

then, of

course,

calf is perfectly right from its own


once we

get used
as
a

to accepting

point of view. the spatial distance


same

each When of the of the

two

events

angular

relative idea, in the the contradictions magnitude,


us
we

way

as

of the theory
point
out

Let relativity will disappear. difference : The angle at which


on

again
see an

depends object

the position of the observer, whereas the space- and depends on his state two time-interval between events have not previously noted That we of motion. of this relativity, is due to the circumstance thing anythat

means are a million carried out by human all motions times too small to permit differences of length or time to be observed.

On
as
a

the
matter

other

history of philosophy) logically correct, and yet without use or having been derived logical deductions suppositions of knowledge. our
from
a
a

of course conceive (and in the of fact it is of frequent occurrence of a succession of ideas being
we can

hand,

purpose, these from artificial

nature

We

for entirely void of importance are that, conready to admit sidered of view,
are some

deductions
similar theory

superficial point in the last chapter On

of the
raise
a

liable to

impression.
of

the

relativity has

part of antagonists, the been banteringly termed a Talmud, appear and very there is
no

of scholasticism and mixture doubt that this remark may

the

new-comer,

who

approaches

plausible to the theory equipped

58

SPECIAL
the good

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

with
common

proof

(calledound old traditions of thought s sense). By way of example, let us take the is given in the last chapter, that the path AB

smaller for the observer in the train than the length of the train itself. That proof is based on the following : The flash of light sent out from the lamp A takes place
sooner

for this observer than

from

(not only
the time

account

from

rays of Ught to reach him the beginning ; and the end of the train) he concludes from this, that the beginning of the train arrives

appears needed by

the flash of light sent out to do so, for he takes into

than the end at B, and proceeds to conclude that the length of the train is greater than the path AB. Sound common sense, naturally taking the point of view
at A
sooner

of the simpler absolute theory, will raise the following : objection In reaUty, the flashes of light at A and B The observer in the train advances were simultaneous. towards the rays of light coming from A, and therefore
"

they reach him sooner flash takes place at


nothing

; from

this he concludes that the first. He pretends to know

movement, of his own and that is where the of this entire way of thinking scholastic hj^ocrisy in." Such thoughts comes must arise in every reader follows the matter attentively, so long as the who

absolute
enough

notions of time On within him.

sufficiently penetrated theory of relativity will defend observer in the train somewhat

and space are rooted deeply the other hand,. whoever has into the progress of ideas in the

the
as

"

hj^ocritical
:

"

follows

That

he

ignores
as we

the have

fact of his motion

is quite

all right, for,

repeatedly emphasised, according to the that the embankprinciple of relativity,the statements ment in motion, or that the train is at rest and the train

ABSURDITY
is at
rest

OF

CONCLUSIONS

59

equally

in motion, are quite embankment for justified, the one thing that matters is the and

the

If he, too, were an relative motion. absolutist, the The flash of light observer in the train might say : from A than from B ; the observer was sent out sooner however, on was the embankment, towards moving
"

from B, hence the emission of the rays of light coming both signals appeared to him to occur simultaneously. That is only because he pretends to know nothing of
his
can a own

motion."

We

thus

see

reproach each other, and if we higher point of view, both are


not

observers from view the matter right ; however, they


"

that

both

must

say that the events


or

were

in truth that

"

simulwere

taneoiis

not
or

simultaneous,

but
from

they

simultaneous

otherwise

as

seen

their respective

systems of reference. difference The fundamental relativity and

between

the theory

of

are not scholasticism is this, that we dealing with subtleties designedly thought of, but with facts of logical results drawn from two experimental its own Logic never was with Einstein, nature.

object

but

only
an

the

instrument

with

which

he freed physics

from

embarrassing

situation.

CHAPTER

IX

THE

UNION

OF

SPACE

AND

TIME

; THE

MINKOWSKI-WORLD
this chapter we propose to consider the results of the special theory of relativity from a new point it all the more makes plausible of view, which
to

IN
We
as

faculty for readers gifted with an imaginative Those who are not so equipped will perhaps geometry. find it difficultto keep up with the following discussion. shall
commence

yet nothing based are which

with considerations that have to do with the theory of rdativity, but


on

space. which

We
take

classical theory of absolute shall call events like the flashing of a lamp, the
"

place at a certain point of space, and at a To determine point-events." certain instant of time, the place and time of a point-event without ambiguity,
we

must

state certain numbers,

of the

For point-event. figure is required, e.g. the number one between have midnight elapsed

the so-called co-ordinates the statement of time, only


of seconds

which

(Greenwich time)

of the. of the close of last century, and the occurrence But to state the place of the event, three numevent. bers because space has three dimensions. are required,

We

know

that to determine

geographical In that way,

any place on the earth, its latitude must be given. longitude and however, the point is not yet fully deter6a

UNION
mined,

OF

SPACE

AND

TIME

61

all points that lie vertically above each geographical longitude and latitude. other have the same Hence the height above sea-level must also be stated, and
case

because

then
the

In the point is definitely determined. earth is the system of reference for our

this

coordinat

To
course,

determine

the

positions

of

stars,

On of reference are other systems used. other hand, in order to fix a particular point in a closed it will be best not to use space, for instance in a room, the geographical longitude and latitude, together with the height above sea-levd, but to state the distances from each of two perpendicular walls, together with the
height above therefore

of the

the floor. To

always

and one 2'5 m. from the front electric lamp hanging in a room wall, 3 m. from the left-hand side wall, and a m. above the floor, is to flash out at the time 12 seconds after (chosenas the commencement of counting midnight

point-event, we must three space-cogive four numbers, ordinates For instance : an time-co-ordinate.

fix

time).
2'3
on m.,

The
3
m.,

co-ordinates
2
m.,

of the
12

point-event

are
us

then

and

seconds.

Let

suppose

another
a

room

point -event : a second electric lamp standing of the same writing-table in the right-hand comer is to flash out at the time 8 seconds, its space-

5 m., and 1-5 m. co-ordinates being i m., form the differences of the corresponding
of the two events : difference between
-

Now

let

us

co-ordinates 8. The I'S, and 12 2-3 1, 3 5, 2 the time-co-ordinates 12-8 4 gives


-

the time elapsing between the flashesof both lamps, the difference of the third space-co-ordinates 2 1"5 gives the difference in height of the lamps, and the difference of
-

the other two pairs of co-ordinates indicates how much farther, forward one of the lamps is situated than the

62

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

to the right. According more much other, and how to the classical theory of absolute space and time, the time-interval between the two events is always equal to

seconds, quite independently of which system of The the reference is used. spatial distance between two lamps (the length of a thread stretched rectilinearly

between

pendently certain value, quite indeof the choice of the system of co-ordinates. (Itis obtainable by a simple mathematical operation from the differences of the spatial co-ordinates, as

them)

also

has

win

be well known is 2*55 example

to many

m.)

enclosed within the inclined to the walls of the firstone. We can, of course, also give the positions of both lamps by means of the from the floor and co-ordinates (distances relative walls) Now to the second room. the second system when of it reference is actually inclined to the first, happens that the co-ordinates of both lamps different not only are from those of the first system of reference, but also the differences of their co-ordinates. But if we calculate

The result in our readers. Now let us suppose another room first room, and that its walls are

the

distance

between

the

two
we

lamps

from

the

new

differences of co-ordinates, before {i.e.*55 as 2 value these results as also the and
are

follows

summarise : The co-ordinates, taken singly, differences between cocorresponding ordinat

m.).

obtain We

exactly the

same

may

; they vary accordrelative magnitudes ing to the choice of the system The of reference. distance between two points, however, and the interval two of time between they are independent
"

; magnitudes of the choice of the system of {N.B. ^We are stillspeaking from the point reference. of view of the old theory of absolute space and time.)

events

are

absolute

UNION
To

OF

SPACE

AND

TIME

63

be quite certain of being clearly understood, we shall of the relativity of co-ordinategive another example of simpHcity, we shall Fig. 3 shows the profile dimensions. right and left by two hillsA and B. of-a plateau bounded We shall suppose the plateau to be slightly inclined towards
sake

differences, and choose it in two

for the

the horizontal plane, and a place 0 to be situated To determine the position of the at its lowest point. two hill-tops with reference to this place, we can proceed
to

0 and their give their horizontal distances from draw For that purpose zontal hori0. we a height above 0, and drop perpendistraight line h-h through

Fig.

3.

cular lines to it from D respectively. OC


distances

and B, which meet it in C and are then the horizontal and OD

of the hill-tops from

heights

with

reference

to

0.

0, and Hence

AC OC

and and

BT) their AC
are

the co-ordinates

the of the point A, and OD and BD co-ordinates of the point B with reference to the system Now imagine circumwe can of co-ordinates chosen. stances

which
of the place h-h through

it convenient for the inhabitants 0 not to draw the horizontal straight hue 0, but to draw a straight line e-e running

make

parallel to the inclined plane itself,and to use this as the basis for the system of reference. They then define distances of the respective hill-tops the perpendicular

64

SPECIAL
that line

THEORY
e-e

OF
their
"

RELATIVITY
height."
In

from OC BD' and from

as

this

case

are the co-ordinates and AC hills have The those of B. different horizontal distance
"

of A, and OU and different "height"


"

from

0,

as

viewed
what

this

inclined

system

of

reference.

But

always
are

remain indepraident of the system of reference the distances of the hill-tops in the serialline from 0, and BO, and the distance AB of the hill-tops from tance other. Thus, what is really invariable is the disbetween two points ; the differences of height and
are

i.e.AO each

horizontal distances
on a more or

only

of projections

this distance

less arbitrarily chosen framework of coordinat They take the part of shadows, and vary

in magnitude and shape according to the position of the In other words, the concepts of plane they fall upon. difference of length, difference of breadth, and difference
of height
are

not

absolute

They

are

just the three


of
one

and , independent concepts. dimensions, the three components


"

spatial separation. is all this connected The reader may now ask : How should now with the theory of relativity ? The reason be readily understood. ence Just as, for instance, the differof height between two points according to our classic view has no absolute meaning, but depends on the choice tween of the system of reference, so the spatial distance bepoints, measured two time-interval between meaning according
two

single concept

aerial Une, and the lose their absolute events, to the theory of relativity. These

in the

ing magnitudes, too, are liable to variation in value accordis the result ? What to the system of reference. In the same way as we said before : The three spatial co-ordinates are only three single dimensions, the components of the notion
of distance

in space,

so

now

we

UNION
may say
:

OF

SPACE

AND
a

TIME
point-event they
of
are

65

All

four co-ordinates
nor

of

are

independent, neither the four dimensions,

absolute ;
components

just
imited

the four

includes space and time simultaneously. idea, which From this day forth, Space taken by itself,and Time
"

by itself are
of union
were

to

become
is to

mere

shadows,

of both

retain

and only independence."

kind

These

the words with which the great German matician matheMinkowski Hermann introduced his lecture
of Natural Scientists at Cologne first introduced this view-point of
"

before the Association in 1908, the


"

where

he

of relativity. According to his proposal, " World the union between space and time was called Minkowski by physicists. Furthermore, that showed

theory

World." and with it is possible, by using this notion of device, to give the help of an ingenious mathematical treatment the mathematical of the theory of relativity
a

"

form

of such

achieved

complete by previously

harmony, any

as

had

never

been The

phjrsical

theory.

it appears although of treatment, relativistic mode to the lajnman, and, even at first sight absurd when he has got used to it, at the least very complicated, lucid for turfls out to be much more simple and more This in itself is a reason treatment. mathematical in favour of the theory of relativity, which must have mental weight with the theoretical physicist. For the expericircumstance be that there is no other way of uniting the two must both of fundamental principles repeatedly mentioned, which have been proved by experience.

physicist,however,

the

deciding

Thus

the

"

"

world

has four dimensions

; but whereas

dimensions, the fourth space has three equally justified {i.e. time) is found to play a part available dimension

66

SPECIAL

THEORY
us

OF

RELATIVITY

Let of its own. between equally


dimensions.
exactly above
i

try to explain clearly the difference dimensions justified and particularised Let us suppose two lamps fixed in a room
each
m.

the 'other from


one
a

other, e.g. one it. If above

close to the floor, and I contemplate them


to appear horizontally
me on

position, they standing above the other. If I lie down

to
a

be

sofa

them from this side position, close by, and contemplate they appear to me to be situated alongside of each other, from above, so that my head is and if I observe them situated they in the
to
"

appear

convert

above by

both lamps, straight line connecting I can behind the other. Thus be one " behind into beside or ad
" "
"

"

choosing independently of the

Ubitum,

suitable
position

point of view, in which, or at

quite
what

distance, the

points are situated. contemplated In the example of the two hill-tops in Fig. 3, a suitable choice of the plane of reference can always result in the " ence difference of height of the two hill-tops (thediffer"

two

of their perpendicular distance from e-e) being in the theory does this work, now, How equal to zero. Just as the difference in height and the of relativity ?

horizontal distance in the example of Fig. 3 can acquire different values, according to the choice of the system of distances between reference, so the spatial and temporal
two

different values, when conpoint-events can assume template from systems of reference in different states of But, whereas in the case of the two hill-tops motion.

A and B, that the

a
"

line of reference can always be chosen " defined above difference of height

such

appears, disunder

in

the

theory
a

of

relativity

we

may,

circumstances, choose in motion, such that

suitable system of reference the difference in time of two

UNION

OF

SPACE

AND
we

TIME
cannot

67

point-events is reduced to zexp, but do so. (We shall find more about As shown are above, we

always this in the next

chapter.)

able to exchange
a

spatial co-ordinates

by

a
"

suitable choice of
" "

system

of

into above alongside of," reference, and convert but we do this analogously cannot with all worlddimensions we {i.e. cannot completely exchange spatial distance with temporal That the time

succession).

co-ordinate follows as

experience Up things. and time independent

particularised role in the world," for our a matter most primitive of course, teaches us that time and space are different plays
a

"

to the present it appeared


were

two

of each

absolutely other, but the theory

that space different ideas, quite


us

to

of relativity

teaches

us

will show for so long

The next chapter that this is not the case. it is that they could be maintained how us
as

ideas, and that for allpractical continue to be so. purposes they stilljustifiably Let us contemplate the classical Newtonian conception

independent

of space and time once his to introduction


Naturalis

more,

before

we

leave it.

In the

world-famed Principia Mathematica

work.
"

Philosophise

^rightly considered

the fundamental

pillar of physics and of exact natural ^Newton says : science generally I. Absolute, true, and mathematical self, time, of it"

"

and without
"

from regard

its own
to

nature,

flows equably

by another name II. Absolute space,

external, and is callgd duration. in its own nature, without

any

thing

regard to any thing external, remains similar and immovable."

always

According uniformly

to
a

Newton,
stream,

like

time absolute ghdes along quite independently of whether

68

SPECIAL

THEORY
or

OF
not

RELATIVITY

space exists like a it would large empty vessel, and, according to Newton, Long if it contained nothing at aU. still exist, even before Einstein and Minkowski, physicists and philosophers
events

take place in it

; and

perhaps with greatest clearness), here makes had pointed that Newton out assertions the description of the actual facts of which go beyond

(Ernst Mach

anything like time exist if all matter in the universe lay dormant, and executed no movement ? happening at all were and if nothing whatsoever,
nature.

Would

Could

space

exist

if it contained
to
us

nothing
as we

These

may perhaps appear it is necessary subtleties ; but from the conception of time as questions

that
a

philosophical free ourselves


gliding along

stream,

uniformly into eternity, and of the conception of space described above, before we can appreciate the ideas of Einstein and Minkowski, who regard both as single For, accorddimensions of a greater whole ing ^the "World."
"

to the theory of relativity,time-intervals and spatial distances vary for observers in different states of motion.

have followed with sufficient readers who on the the considerations of this chapter attention World, will perhaps, on thinking over Minkowski all

Those

before, put the following question : gone According to the classical conception of space and time, the height differences and horizontal distances of two
that has

the system of reference, and their spatial distance, are absolute ; but nothing in the aerial line, has an absolute value measured In the independent of co-ordinates. of the system
and
on

points A

B depend

distances of relativity, the spatial and temporal point-events take a similar part to those taken of two by height-difference and horizontal distance formerly. theory

UNION
Is there an which

OF

SPACE
magnitude

AND

TIME

69

absolute

in Minkowski's

World,

is geometrically from capable of construction distance, and which spatial and temporal plays the in the same part as formerly the distance measured of the system aerial line, i.e. which is independent of be anreference ? This well-justified swered question must in the afiirmative ; there is an absolute magnitude World-distance of this kind, and it is called the
" "

of the two
'

point-events.^
familiar

the elementary mathematics, with clear in a subject-matterset forth in this chapter can be made few lines. If the co-ordinate differences of two points in space readers
law of Pjrthay, z, we find, with the help of the well-known goras, that the value of the spatial distance of these points is
are
x,

For

If any other co-ordinate be used to give the position of system differences will in general the points, the value of the co-ordinate In calculating the spatial distance be different, say x', y', z'. from these co-ordinate so that results ;
new

differences, the

same

value

as

before

again

V"* +y* -!-"*= n/"" +)''" -I-.?".


In the theory of relativity of classical geometry. the matter thus : Let us suppose " to be the x, y, z and stands differences temporal spatial and co-ordinate of two pointif a new Now system of reference be introduced, eyents. which

Thus

the

'

case

is in motion

relatively to the first co-ordinate system, and differences are given by *', y', z', and f, the co-ordinate which find that the equation

in
we

is
two

no

longer

strictly

fulfilled ;

hence

the

(as mentioned its magnitude depends ; meaning The real absolute co-ordinates. is fully independent of which
point-events
"
"

repeatedly)
on

spatial has

distance

of

the

choice

no absolute the system of of

world-distance

of

the two

magnitude mentioned above, the co-ordinate system (the is now given by the point-events)

expression

sJx*+y^+z*-cH*
where
c

slx'^+y'^+z'^-cV*
vacuo.

represents

the velocity of light in

CHAPTER

NUMERICAL

CONSIDERATIONS
we

IN
from for
an

Chapter
the
of

VII
two
two

drew

the following

from

fundamental
lamps A

conclusions principles : (i) The 5


at
a

flashing each

and

distance

other, although
on as

taking

observer

simultaneously distance between


from

the embankment, from seen the

place simultaneously does not take place


train.

(2)

If the

the two

lamps

is equal embankment distance, train, then the corresponding the


from

and B as measured to the length of the


as

measured the

the train, is smaller than its length. These conclusions, having been drawn
are

without

of a purely qualitative nature ; have not so far indicated the magnitude we of the time- and length-measurements discrepancies between

aid of mathematics,

observer in the train and for an observer on the From the numbers quoted in Chapter III embankment. be very the reader will readily imagine that they must is shown in the as small, and that is indeed the case,
for
an

duction denumerical formulae of the mathematical The reader wiU have to accept on trust the theory. in this, and in the next chapter, whereas the statements the qualitative conclusions contained in the preceding following
calcidations, resulting from

which

contain

NUMERICAL
chapters
were

CONSIDERATIONS
a

71

purely logical nature, and could be readily controlled by the thoughtful reader. In the firstplace, it is self-evident that the statements of of the
two

velocity the differences involved for velocities such


as

observers wiU be identical, if the relative between is equal to zero. Secondly, them
are

practically equal

to

zero

be given to material bodies disposal. For example : at our with the technical means We shall suppose the train in Chapters VI and VII to travel with a velocity of io8 km. per hour, i.e. 30 m. a
can

second,

and

that its length

as

If the lamps itselfis 150 m. emit flashes of for an light exactly simultaneously the observer on he were the observer in the train (if embankment, able
to

measured A and B

from

the train

exactitude ^which in reaUty !) he never can would state that a time-interval the of 0-00000000000005 seconds had elapsed between Furthermore, two the length of the train as events.
measurements
"

carry out

of such

measured

from but

the embankment

would

not

be exactly

difference m. The 149-99999999999975 to about the two-hundredth in length, therefore, amoimts

150

m.

part of the diameter of length of the train were

an

be reduced still more. difference in the measurements no of the distancetwo as seen and time-interval between point-events from

If the velocity or the smaller, these differences would It follows that we should perceive
atom.

the train and from the embankment, instruments to be were precision of our

even

if the
a

increased

milliard times. To avoid unnecessary practical purposes, considering


so
we are

for aU complications, and in therefore quite justified space


"

statements

that

we

may

of time and say, for instance :

An

absolute, iron rod has a

as

72

SPECIAL

THEORY
metres,"
"

OF
though
observer
we

RELATIVITY
ought
to

length of ten
quite correct,
motion,"

add, to be such
a

for

an

with such and

In e.g. who is at rest relatively to the earth. point of fact, the length of the rod is different for an relatively to it, than for an observer observer in motion
at rest

relatively to it, but the difference is


less than
our

milliard

a and powers of measurement, million times less, for instance, than the changes which its temperature the length of the rod undergoes when is raised by a tiny fraction of a degree by the near

times

approach
Whilst

of

human

being. by
the theory tivity of rela-

the effects demanded

that
assume

we

remain have

infinitesimally small for those velocities to deal with in practical Ufe, they would magnitude succeed in to the velocity of Ught.
we

considerable

if

could

reaching velocities approaching If we could travel with a velocity of 244,800 second

km.

per

would permit us to run round the were and if we equator about six times in a second), of length during able to carry out an exact measurement this furious journey (both possibilities are, of course,

(thiselocity v

the observer on the embankment of the question), find the length of the train to be only half as would long as would the observer in the train. But if the
out

train

were

dimensions

be reduced of the two lamps

with the velocity of Hght, its from the embankment would contemplated to zero Of course the distance altogether. travelling
A and B ^yould, on the other hand, also for the observer in the train, since all
ones,

be equal to

zero

these relations are reciprocal The reader may ask : What


moves

already mentioned. happens, if the observer

as

with remind

us

velocity greater than that of light ? Let him of what declared in we emphatically
a

NUMERICAL
Chapter based
on

CONSIDERATIONS
the special that theory
no

78

VI,
the

that

supposition
a

of relativity is be transmitted effect can that of light ;

with

velocities with to the theory of relativity, According greater than c. the velocity of light pla}^ the part of a Umiting velocity, be exceeded, and which is never cannot able attainwhich We shall have material bodies. this point in the next chapter. by
more

hence

no

velocity greater bodies can material

than
move

to say

on

traveller going that of light, would

along make

with

velocity approacliing
curious observations

other

in connection with the relativity of the notion of time. Let us suppose the that by the year five thousand development
as

of human
not

technics
an

to

admit

only of

far so advanced inter-planetary service with had

but also, that we solar system, planets of our should be able to visit the planets of distant fixed stars, Besides this, we and had established colonies there.

other

the introduction of an interstellar time, shall imagine that the inhabitants of distant fixed stars could set so by to agree their watches with terrestrial watches
know that the idea of wireless signals. As we shaJl define interstellar time as of time is rdative, we the correct time for an observer at rest relatively to our
means

solar

system

of service between

Union

our (supposing earth to preside Stars).The world-ships, which carry

in the
on

the

constructed as to be after starting from the earth, and more accelerated more so that their speed nearly attains to the velocity of light ; and they do not slacken speed until they get

the

stars

are

so

the distant planets, where to enable them to land slowly.


near

"

brakes

"

are

appUed

We
on

in the year

5500,

traveller goes

shaU suppose that, board one of these

74

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

world-ships to visit a colony on a planet belonging to a fixed star, at a distance of about hundred lightone from the earth. The ship starts with full years away

force, and

increases
to

(equal nearly

c)

speed has been

until the

utmost

velocity

reached.

We

that this process of acceleration, according of the traveller and the ship's chronometers, From the instant the maximum months.

shall assume to the watch


lasts six

is attained, only a few seconds statement of the ship's clocks)ntil they are sufficiently u to the planetary S37stem of the distant fixed star near
to require to slacken

velocity t elapse (accordingo the

speed

again, and

thus

reduce

the

velocity of the world-ship to rest, a process which again That occupies six months. part of the journey performed with the maximum velocity, and during which by
far the

appears duration

greatest part of to the traveller only of the

the
a

distance

moment.

is covered, For him the period of

journey involves

only

the

acceleration and the period of retardation, or a year altogether. But when he leaves the ship in the planetary stellar colony, he will find himself in the year 3600 intertime, and if, after a stay of a few weeks, he then returns to the earth, he will not reach it until the year have disappeared, generations of men 5700. Meanwhile dead are but he his great-grandchildren and gone, himself is little more than two see years older. We that the dream of H. G. Wells' Time-Machine might be could succeed in some realised, if we way in imparting of locomotion velocities approaching the velocity of light. Let us return to everyday reality. The sober reader will be surprised that exact science places before him
to
our

means

such

fantastic

pictures.

The

"

sceptic will say

No

NUMERICAL
such

CONSIDERATIONS
; why

75
sense non-

stuff for ? And


"

me

should
are

those

who

I believe in such ready to disprove


"

the

theory

counter-arguments will fellow Einstein is a cursed nuisance I


so

by

That exclaim : He twists matters

For aU reasonable velocities attainable in practical life,the effects are so small that
we
we

that

can't get at him.

can't

measure

them fanciful

that such

the
as

most
are

to believe are yet we results hold in circumstances


;

and

absolutely
so

unreaUsable
we are

with

our

modern

technical

means,

that
we

unable to put
same

them
as

to

the test."
end of

To

this

give
:

the

reply

at

the

Chapter

VIII

These

unyielding

logic from

the two

conclusions arise with fundamental assumptions

(theprinciple

as our of the experience does not disprove the validity of these two laws, we are to believe deductions made from them, and compelled do so all the more we must when we take account of the

of relativity and that velocity of light).As long

of the constancy

fact that sma;ll bodies do exist in nature, the velocity Exact the velocity of light. approaches of which
on made drawn the consequences

measurements

them from

confirm the validity of the theory of relativity. chapter. attention to


a

Of these
Before

we

shall speak doing this, we

in the next draw must

point

According to the special theory of importance. of happen events may relativity, it is possible that two at different points of the earth's surface and at different times place terrestrial observer, but for an simultaneously observer
a

for

that

they

take
relatively

in motion
to

understand this as meaning that a S3rstem of reference of this kind happening event could be discovered, from which an happening in London in to-day, and event another

to

the

earth.

But

we

are

not

76

SPECIAL
York

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

New

to-morrow,

simultaneously.
events

be found to take place would This is quite impossible, because two

(thedistance Londonof such spatial proximity New York is very small compared with astronomical can distances) only be seen simultaneously by observers
on

system
as

them,
state

in motion, if the time-interval between Let us observed from the earth, is very small.

this numerically : Two events at which occur for an observer in different places can be simultaneous rapid motion, only if the interval of time between their detection for
terrestrial observer is smaller, or at most, equal to the time required by light to travel from one Thus, if the rectilinear distance place to the other.
a

between
1000

the

km.,

the where the time-interval between places


must

two

events

happen
for

is
a

the events
or

terrestrial observer
to,

be less than,
an

at most

equal

3^th

we the timemay accept interval of the moving observer would -g^th second, have to travel with the velocity of light, if the events

second, in order that detect simultaneity. If

observer

in motion

were

to be simultaneous

for him.

If the time-interval

by a terrestrial observer were measured ^^th second, be simultaneous for an observer moving the events would they with one-half of the velocity of light, whereas
order for an observer moving What has been said here with the velocity of Ught. illustrative of the statements as serve near may made the end of Chapter IX, where the singular part taken

would

occur

in the

reverse

by

time

under

amongst discussion.
is
more
one

the

four

"

World

"

dimensions

was

There

much

other far less obvious, but fundamentally important difference between the interof the spatial

changeability

dimensions

(cf.p. 66),

NUMERICAL
and the dependence

CONSmERATIONS

77

of the spatial and temporal distances of two point-events on the state of motion of the system To return to the example tops, of the two hillof reference. we can arrange, by turning the system of reference, that both the difference
" "

height-difference
altered.

"

and
we

the

"

horizontal the

will be

If

investigate

different possible positions of the system of reference, discover that if the system of reference be turned in we to make as the height-difference smaller, such a way

then
vice

the

larger, and horizontal-difference will become is different, however, The in the case versa.

sjTstems of reference moving If the time-interval between relatively to each other. the two events in the second system is greater than in

relativity of space from point-events

and
two

time.

Let

us

contemplate

two

the first,then

the

spatial distance

will also be greater

than in the first, (Comparethe numerical and vice versa. the at the beginning of this chapter, where example length of the train as well as the interval of time between
lamps, as measured flashing of the two from the from the embanktrain, is greater than as measured ment.) As we before, this fact is not so obvious said the
to the

non-mathematician,

apparent circumstance world, of the Minkowski

and yet it is justthis less which determines the character

the profound creates and difference between space and time.^ two That terrestrial events take place simulcan taneously for a moving they occur observer only when within
*

small

fraction of
formulated,

second

for

an

observer

at

this circumstance is due to the t', enters into the fact that the square of the time-difference, " " for the (cf. footnote, end of world-distance expression Chapter IX) with the opposite sign to that of x", y\ and i".

Mathematically

78

SPECIAL
on

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

that the the earth, is due to the circumstance This magnitude c velocity of light is so immense. in physics, and it is magnitude represents a fundamental
rest

convenient, therefore, to choose the imits of length and to make as time in such a way the velocity of Ught If we retain the second as the unit of equal to unity. In these time, the unit of length will be 300,000 km.
as we units may call them ^the duration life is a very long one, for it amounts on the of human The spatial scene miUions of seconds. average to many the other hand, is very Umited, existence, on of our
" "

natural

"

"

of our globe measures only about 0*04 It wiU perhaps appear to the reader units of length. is without import, because the that this statement
is quite arbitrary, always arrange matters in such a way that and we can in these units is equal the earth's diameter measured ad libitum. either to a large or to a small number,

for the diameter

choice of

our

units of length and

time

the units of when we choose the relation between length and time so that the velocity of light is equal to But after what ^which is physically well-founded, unity, measure has been said above, (however ^the numerical we of the duration of our Ufe choose the single units) milMons of times greater than win, in any case, be many
" "

that

of our activity.* We of the spatial extent return to this point in the second part of this book.
implies that all motions statement beings are very slow associated with human
1

will

This

carried
as

out

by

or

compared

with

the velocity

of propagation

of light.

CHAPTER

XI

FURTHER

CONCLUSIONS

AND VERIFICATION

THEIR

EXPERIMENTAL
the

IN
Hence

analysis of footnote in Chapter

our

idea

of
was

VI),stress

(cf. simultaneity laid on the fact

which involves the law of the constancy of the velocity of light, is without purport unless there is no other effect whatsoever that is propagated with a velocity greater than c. it is not surprising that this theory subsequently gives rise to results, according to which material bodies be given velocities greater than c on the one never can

that

the Einstein

definition of simultaneity,

hand, and if we were

on

the other that absurd


assume

to

that

any

results would (even if not

ensue

material)

with a velocity greater than effect could be propagated If an effect of this kind existed, one could that of Ught. in which devise experiments the effect preceded the
cause. so no
we

is quite contradictory to experience, and again have to conclude that there are shall once

This

effects which are propagated with a tioned velocity greater than that of light. Besides, as menin the last chapter, for an observer at rest the length of a body moving with the velocity of light would such
as

things

be reduced

to

zero,

and

furthermore,

that such an observer would obtain an for the length of a body moving with

calculation shows imaginary number


a

velocity greater

80

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

than that of Ught, a result which, from a physical point Thus we are of view, would be absolutely unreasonable.
with the velocity of hght in the theory of relativity, as the upper hmit of all velocities. This is in complete accord with our experience, as we know of At one no quickly than Ught. effect which travels more
again

confronted

time

was gravitation propagated with a greater velocity than light ; but this has proved It is interesting to foUow up the matter to be erroneous.

it

was

assumed

that

in regard to the velocities attainable by material bodies. traflBc, shooting, All velocities connected with human and so forth, are so ridiculously small compared with the velocity of light that they the much
do
not
count at

all.

Even

appear in astronomy, the solar system, "the velocities of planets and comets of the latter of which those of fixed stars and of meteors,
greater velocities which

occasionally

general Nevertheless, there


move

shoot through our thousand rule, many


are

atmosphere, times smaller


"

^are,

as

a c.

than

material

bodies in nature

the value c. velocities approaching the atoms are of electricity, the so-called electrons, space of a Rontgen such as pass through the evacuated bulb with enormous over, Morevelocity when it is working.
with of the rays emitted by radio-active substances by single atoms consist of electrons, emitted ((8-rays)
some

which These

substances with an incredible velocity. The atoms of the elements themselves, when passing through rarefied gases during electric discharge, attain smaller
of these stiU velocities (though balls or cannon radium, compared with those of so stars), do also the so-called a-rays of know now with certainty, are which, as we
enormous

of the rare nothing else than electrically charged atoms The velocity of all these particles has gas helium.

FURTHER

CONCLUSIONS

81

been found to be measurable, and it was discovered that it varies according Some to experimental conditions. relatively very small velocities of only a few km. less hundred {i.e. than that of many per second but others have the velocities approaching have

comets),
highest

300,000 km. per possible velocity of about If we to put all the velocities appertaining second. find an unbroken we material bodies in nature in a row, From the movement of glaciers, sequence of velocity.
to a small fraction of a millimetre which only amounts per hour, up to the incredibly large velocities of the electrons in the form of /8-rays, every possible velocity in nature ; but slightly below is represented somewhere

From the point of the velocity of Ught the scale ends. view of the old classical physics, this might be regarded as merely accidental ; according to that view, it might be thought possible that a j8-ray might alsa possess a From the point of velocity of 310,000 km. per second. the upper view of the theory of relativity, however, limit of velocity is not accidental, but is a natural law. It is impossible to have velocities greater than that of light. The theory of relativity is not content in merely la5dng sible down the law that velocities greater than c are impos;
on

the

contrary,

with the help of mathematical

formulae, it actually gives a reason why greater velocities exist. To make this clear, we must proceed still cannot in the first chapter that, It was further. explained the of mechanics, classical theory is strictly valid for mechanical principle of relativity the old ideas of space and time. processes based on Einstein-MinkowsMIf we replace these by the new

according

to

the

world

ideas, 6

we

find that the principle of relativity of

82

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

longer be valid for mechanical can no classical mechanics is supposed As this principle" however, to processes.

be
no

general law

of nature,

the theory

of relativity has

other

choice than

to state

is not point very

strictly vaUd, and of fact, this is not

that classical mechanics is in need of correction. In


difficult to
accomplish.

alteration in the fundamental of equations them satisfy the enabled Einstein to make mechanics views principle of relativity, on the basis also of the new These changes are of such a kind of space and time. sUght
classical for velocities met with in human which occur mechanics in astronomy. For or technics velocities, however, the velocity of light, the deviations from approaching

that

we

can

neglect

the

deviations

from

They are the laws of the older mechanics considerable. consist in the following : In order to set a body into to we as is well known, must, motion {i.e. accelerate it),

apply
to

force to

overcome

its inertial resistance.

ing Accord-

Newtonian fundamental law of the elementary mechanics, this force is equal to the product resulting from the inertial mass of the body multiplied by the If, for instance, of the acceleration. magnitude of I kg. is to be accelerated from the condition
so as
a

mass

velocity of lo m. per second force must be applied. In end of I second, a certain before us, this force wotild be about equal the example to the force exerted by gravity on the kilogram weight.
attain
a

to

of rest at the

To
10

cause m.

the per
one

same

body
to
20

to
m.

second
would,

increase in velocity from in the next per second

second, have to
increase

to classical mechanics, according force, and so on. Thus to the same expend kilogram the velocity of the same weight

within

another

second

from

10,000,000

m.

per

FURTHER
second, exactly other for instance,
same

CONCLUSIONS
to
10,000,010
m.

83

the
words,

force would

have

second, In to be applied.

per

force and quotient resulting from the acceleration {i.e. inertia! mass)is a perfectly definite for a particular body, and is quite independent number of the velocity. This no longer holds good in relativistic the mechanics

whether
to to
10
m.

according to this, it is not quite immaterial from the velocity zero body is accelerated per second, or from the velocity 10,000,000
:

10,000,010
case

the latter
the
mass

of a with increasing velocity (incontradiction made of the older mechanics dependence

The force required in per second. In other words, would be rather greater. body is not constant, but slightly increases
m.

to the statement

above).

This

detectable
inertia!
mass

of the mass in the small of


a

on

the state of motion is not velocities of daily Ufe ; the

railway train of 200 tons weight is, thousandth part of when at rest, only about a himdred to travel at the rate of less than if it were a gramme But the changes in the mass km. per hour. 100 of a body, the velocity of which is approaching of hght, are very considerable, so that the
the velocity
mass

of every

would become If we that of Ught.

body

enormous

if its velocity approached accelerate a particle of dust lying


cannot

of our at all ; but


on

one

fingers,we
all the

feel its inertial resistance

forces stored in our solar system would not suffice to accelerate this self-same particle it had attained the velocity of light. of dust, if once

Thus, from the point of view of the theory of relativity, we are why the manifold velocities able to understand are one and all of material bodies existing in nature
limited

justwithin

the boundary

of the velocity of light.

This

fact of the limitation of the scale of velocities

84

SPECIAL
a

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

tells in undoubtedly striking circumstance, which favour of the theory of relativity ; but, on the other hand, be taken as a direct proof of its validity. It it cannot to examine Einstein's found was possible, however,
is

deduction

of the dependency

of

mass

on

velocity for

that the the /3-rays of radium, and the result proved creasin inertial mass really does increase with inof a body demanded by the velocity, and by the amount
formulae of the theory. a The theory of relativity has achieved triumph in recent years, since the German

surprising physicist

succeeded in explaining mathematically the so-called fine structure of spectral lines of A hydrogen and helium with the help of this theory. few remarks on this will be useful. If a photograph

Sommerfeld

in Munich

subject

be taken

of the spectrum

of

luminous

electric

in rarefied gases (Geissler-tube), sharply very defined lines appear on the plate, these belonging to light of of a distinct colour {i.e. a certain frequency of oscilla-

discharge

tion).

These numbers,

appear considerable Unes showing on the plate at intervals series of


unequal,

lines

always

in

which, though

nevertheless succeed each other regularity. This kind of with a certain mathematical has therefore received the name of seriesspectrum
Up to spectrum. of the mechanism
luminous
a

very short time ago our of the processes in the

knowledge
atom

gas, emitting these series-spectra, was In 1913 the Danish physicist N. Bohr theory proposed succeeded, with the help of the quantum by the German physicist M. Planck, in throwing

of a complet in-

the process of the emission of series-spectra. A discussion of this theory, which is in many respects
light
on

stillmore

complicated

and

more

mathematical

than

the

FURTHER
theory
of relativity, would

CONCLUSIONS
take
us

85

too

far.

We

shall

merely mention that each of the atoms of the elements is supposed to be a sort of planetary system. In this the so-caUed nucleus of the atom takes the part of the
sun

; it is

charged with positive electricity and its mass

trons, Elecconstitutes almost the entire mass of the atom. tiny much lighter in weight than the nucleus (i.e. particles, considered to be the atoms of negative elecit in circular or elliptic orbits, around like planets aroimd The physicist Bohr, by the sun. applying the laws holding good for planetary movement
move

tricity

in astronomy to the orbits of electrons in the atom, them with the laws of the aboveand by combining theory mentioned quantum of Planck, arrived at a theory of the series-spectra of hydrogen and the

helium

which agrees splendidly with experience.^ This is not immediately connected with

theory

of relativity. A closer analysis of these series, however, the following results. The gave single lines of the spectral-series are not in general simple lines ; on the

contrary, they three, or more


they
are

are

lines consisting of two, comphcated lines very close together, so that when

investigated with a spectral apparatus of small dispersion, they appear to shrink into one single line. example familiar to aU who have

The

best known

of this is the D-line of sodium, ever observed a luminous fleime

The sodium containing with a spectral apparatus. Bohr theory could not explain the appearance of Hnedoublets, triplets, etc., in the spectral series of hydrogen
and

helium. that
case

At

this

in juncture,

1916,

Sommerfeld
atom
occur

showed
1

if the

orbits of

electrons in the
series-lines which

In the

of helium, only

for those

in the so-called

spark

spectrum.

86

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

are not calculated of planetary orbits) ing according to the laws of classicalmechanics, but accordto relativisticmechanics, taking into consideration

to (similar those

the

above-mentioned
we

dependency
not

of

the

mass

on

only the general structure of spectral series already elucidated by Bohr, but also the fine structure of the single lines. In addition to this, Sommerfeld was able to predict certain complicated
velocity,!

obtain

from calculations groups of lines in the helium spectrum based on the theory of relativity, which were quently subseby means in Boim confirmed by Paschen of very deUcate spectral measurements. Let us survey the results we have far obtained

so

in

confirmation of the theory of relativity. experimental VI, the First of all, as shown at the end of Chapter two fimdamental foundations the of the theory
"

by and strengthened principles ^have been supported so that we the most experiments, careful and exact should beheve the vahdity of the theory of relativity
"

even

if no
a

further experimental

That
the

strikuig experimental from the theory deductions


forthcoming,

evidence were available. proof of the correctness of


not of relativity was would dispel all doubt,

immediately

which is due to the fact that all deviations from the old laws of mechanics and electro-dynamics, and all the divergencies from our measura of space and time, are imold conceptions of the known processes of small for most It is only for the enormous velocities connected nature. with the orbits of electrons in the atom, and for the
1

The

variability of
case

mass

is much

more

important

here

than

in the

the velocity of orbits, because of actual planetary far surpasses that of planets or fixed the electrons in the atom
stars.

FURTHER

CONCLUSIONS
that the theory leads to
a

87
deviation

fiand cathode-rays,
from
on

the

older classical ph3^ics, and


moving

bodies
a

as

matter

with such of fact, decided

enormous

all experiments velocities havci

in favour

of the theory

of relativity. Finally, we

must

Einstein stated to 'of the theory result of relativity. As above mentioned, it has a velocity the mass of a body is greater when z; than when it is at rest. Mathematically formulated, be stated thus : If m" is the mass the matter can of a body at rest and ot" its mass when it has the velocity v, by the motion the increase in m^s {m^"m") caused is equal

refer to those deductions which be physically the most important

energy possessed by the body with the velocity v, divided by the square of the velocity This last magnitude to an immense amounts of Ught.i figure in the usual phjrsical units of length and time

to

the

kinetic

(cm. and sec), i.e. to


in
mass

900 trillions; thus the increase is immeasurably small for the usual velocities
body

If the velocity of the same possessed by bodies. be again increased, say from v to 2V, its mass again increase by an amount kinetic energy (producedby divided
given by the increase in

would the increase of

velocity)

by the square of the velocity of light. Hence is proportional to the increase in the increase in mass
kinetic energy. Now Einstein
1

was

able to show
of
mass

that not only does


a
"

an
"
.

We

know
^

that the kinetic energy


m
,
",
.

mass
i,.

m
i

with
"

velocity
wti'
_,

IS

given "

by
"'2

-vK

The

mcrease

of

is

therefore

This
/

2C'

is exactly formula valid only for velocities (v) small compared to relativisdc mechanics, the kinetic with c, because, according

energy

for very

large velocities is no

longer given

by

-"'.

88

SPECIAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

increase
mass

increase in the an of kinetic energy produce of a body, but that every increase of energy produces If, for instance, energy such an increase of mass.
to a body, an of heat be conveyed win occur, and this increase of mass

in the form
of mass in the

increase vsdU,
as

be of the kinetic energy before mentioned, divided by the equal to the heat energy absorbed, square of the velocity of light. A direct examination body before and of this law (sayby weighing the same
case

be performed on after the heating) cannot account of the infinitesimal smallness of the effect. Certain considerati however, have led us to suppose that the
theory of relativity will perhaps

best explain

mental funda-

the problem of chemistry, namely, problem of the deviation of atomic weights from whole numbers. As is well known, the atomic weights, e.g., of carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen, are almost 12, 14, and 16 times
greater, respectively, than the atomic weight of hydrogen. do not agree quite exactly ; on the But these numbers
less than i contrary, divergencies of somewhat per have been it cent, undoubtedly established. Now be regarded as fortuitous that the ratios between cannot

the each
and
even

atomic

weights

other in the that of hydrogen numbers


12,

(which succeed of these elements Periodic Sjratem of the Elements)


Ue
so

dose 16.

to the three successive

14, and not exactly equal to the hitherto quite inexplicable.

Why

numbers But the theory of relativity If we suppose, supplies us with a possible explanation. for instance, that a C-atom consists of 12 hydrogen
atoms,

these ratios are given, has been

any

(atomicweight 4),or of of 3 helium atoms of these constituents, then the comarrangement bination of these constituent parts to a single atomic
or

FURTHER
nucleus
amounts

CONCLUSIONS
the rearrangement

89 of large ensue the

is'bound

to involve

small

of electrical energy, from which wiU On the basis of these variavariations of mass. tions of mass required by the theory of relativity,
account

we

can

for the deviations

from

whole

numbers

of atomic weight ratios. At the end of last chapter we that it is mentioned to choose the units of length and time in convenient such a way that the numerical measure of the velocity If we use these natural units of light is equal to imity. in what foUows, then the proportionality factor between increase of energy and increase of mass the (i.e. square of the and we Increase velocity of Ught) will also be equal to unity, law in a simpler way. then formulate our may
of energy

increase of mass. facts with regard

by an equal is always accompanied (Thisdoes not in the least alter the former assertions, because the to our

to a body in the form of heat, etc., energies conveyed if expressed in these natural units, are infinitesimally small.) Now before the introduction of the theory of known that every body, whether hot relativity, it was

of energy. cold, always possesses a certain amount This consists of heat energy, stored within the body, together with the energy of chemical afiinity (suchas
or

but probably that released in the process of combustion), for the main part of enormous amounts of energy situated in the inside of atomic nuclei, and hitherto not rendered of the radio-active elements. evident except in the case We
cannot

say, in
a

contained
only
measure

for example, the total what to, as litre of coal gas amounts which By

energy
we

can

the differences of energy


reactions.
we

become

free in

chemical

analogy

substances

might

expect

active with radiothat the total energy

90

SPECIAL

THEORY
Now

OF
the

RELATIVITY
theory
of relativity is equivalent the plausible the

is very teaches
to
an

considerable. us that every

increase

increase in energy This leads to in mass. made

assumption, total
mass

immediately

by

Einstein, that

is equal to the energy stored within it. Mass and energy, according to this view, become identical. And, as a matter of fact, justfor these two

of

body

of analogous the law of the structure are found to have validity ; i.e. conservation of mass, and the law of the conservation Let us suppose a system of bodies surrounded of energy.
on

magnitudes,

two

fundamental

laws of nature

all sides by

an

impenetrable
nor

neither radiation
of the

conservation mass of all the bodies contained in this envelope remains constant, whatever process they may undergo amongst themselves, in the way of chemical reactions, explosions,
or

which allows heat to pass through it. The law ma^intains that the total of mass
envelope,

combustions, regard

etc.

Exactly

the
the

same

is maintained

with

to energy.

Within

envelope,

chemical

be transformed into thermal energy, and energy may this into mechanical energy ; but the total sum of the

According to the energies always remains the same. fundamental laws of theory of relativity, these two and energy are one nature reduce to one law, for mass thing. and the same
In order
to

elucidate the statement

energy, and to avoid First of word, let us analyse the idea of mass. empty all,we must state that we have to deal here with a dual idea, which has been treated in physics as a single one of
mass

and

of the identity its remaining an

which plays only, owing to an accessory circumstance the second important an r61e m part of this book. In general, the mass of a body is measured with a

FURTHER
balance
;
we

CONCLUSIONS
the

91

determine

pulls it downwards, exerted by gravity

force with which gravity i.e. we it with the force compare The result of on the miit of mass. the gravitational The idea of the inertial mass different from this. It is the

this weighing
mass a

can

therefore be designated

of

body

of the body. is somewhat

resistance offered to acceleration, i.e. according to the law of Newtonian fundamental mechanics mentioned beginning of this chapter, the quotient between at the force

know We from and acceleration. experience is for all substances always prothat the inertial mass portiona to the gravitational mass body ; hence, if one

is twice
as

"

as

inert

"

as

another, maintain
we
mean

it must

heavy.i

Now,

if
mass,

we

that that

also be twice every form of

energy

involves

certain inertia and a certain weight. to a body in the form energy is conveyed body will become
"

it possesses a If, for example,

heavier and more We thus arrive at what at firstsight appears a startling an evacuated result, namely, that even space which is be said to have transmitting energy can weight and inertia.

of heat, that inert."

Thus,

if

we

completely

evacuate

vessel

it (supposing were

of the gas molecules), by dectro-magnetic by be permeated radiation (e.g. light-rays, if we are dealing with a glass vessel situated or if this is not the case, in a hghted room, at aU events by heat-rays, which
are

possible to remove the evacuated

the last remnants interior would still

at the alwajre present, even But as every kind of lowest attainable temperatures). if it energy, so every vessel, even radiation transmits
'

This

is by

no

means

self-evident,
as we

and

does

not

follow

from in

the

definitions

the second

of these notions, part of this book.

shall

show

in detail

92

SPECIAL
not
;

THEORY
any

OF
tangible
even

RELATIVITY
contains substance, interior of the empty

does energy
vessel

contain

consequently

the

possesses

may sound that the deceased

gravitation and inertia. This result but it is interesting to note paradoxical, Viennese

before physicist Hasenohrl, developed, and by starting the theory of relativity was different considerations, finally off from completely result, i.e.that inertial mass must arrived at the same
be associated with heat radiation in an empty space. " leave the If we units of measurement, natural to the usual C.G.S. system once more and return of be stated thus : The units, the law in question must
"

energy pUed

of the velocity of Ught, 900 trillions. This figure is stupendous, and it takes breath away to think of what in one's might happen if the dormant to a town, energy of a single brick were be set free, say in the form
suffice to
raze

contained in by the square

body

is equal

to its

mass,

mtiltii.e. by

ground.^
as we

city with This, however, from

It would explosion. millions of inhabitants to the happen, because, will never of


an

know

radio-active

quantities of energy are only liberated with extreme slowness, and of atoms are entirely uninfluenced by human agencies.
enormous

these phenomena, in the nuclei contained

It would Dreadnought

'

suffice to lift two to a height of t}^

imllions
1000 m.

of

battleships

of

the

END

OF

PART

PART
THE
GENERAL THEORY

II
OF RELATIVITY

CHAPTER

XII

ON

INERTIA
led

AND
to

GRAVITATION
the

NECESSITY
Theory
of Relativity.

origin of the Special If the principle of relativit

and the principle of the constancy the velocity of light are held to be right, there can deductions further choice ; all those no made Einstein
follow by compulsion,
as

of be
by

in

mathematical
the
theory

problem. To proceed
did not
seem

with

the

development
a

of

absolutelynecessary from
was

of view, but its continuation with unexampled

physical point carried out by Einstein

consistency during force here at The main motive the years 1907-1915. Einstein's philosophical perception ; he saw work was his new theory, and above all, the clearly that even
perseverance and

Newtonian

theory

of gravitation

(accepted without

any

modification up to that time) still possessed all those deficiencies of a philosophical nature, that have been by a number of philosophers clearly and keenly criticised in the
course

of the last half-century


93

"

without

any

of

94

GENERAL
being

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

What upon the theory. able to improve we these deficiencies were, shall show in the following.
them At the beginning
"

of this book

we

made

the assertion

to talk of a relative motion It is only reasonable is unbodies ; to speak of absolute motion between reasona because it cannot be proved." When we
"

we meant uniform motion," rectilinear motion. said is not in general, however, For motion this statement motion valid, because the existence of a non-uniform be detected can quite well, without considering the

into brought since inertial forces are surroundings, If, for instance, a train be suddenly stopped, we play. fail to notice this distinctly ; in a railway cannot

collision the inertial forces called forth by the change fatal. According may prove motion absolutely

of
to

Newtonian

to the also according and of the special theory of relativity, these mechanics effects do not depend solely on the relative accelerations tions. of the bodies to each other, but on their absolute accelera-

mechanics,

That in the world

is to

say

if there

were

railway-train

nothing else, i.e.if there were nothing itself would the motion relatively to which it moved, not malre itselffelt,but every change of motion would. and In starting phenomena
or

in slowing
occur

down
as

would

of the train, the same with a train accelerated neither


space
"

Now this means relatively to the earth. less than that the idea of absolute nor
which
"

more

against
successfully

the
comes

theory

so of relativity combated to the front once Uniform more.

motion

relative to absolute space is not compatible with reason, to the principle of and is not perceptible according A change of motion with respect to absolute

relativity. space is doubtless

just as

incompatible

with

reason,

ON

INERTIA

AND

GRAVITATION

95

-^^nd

yet it is to call forth noticeable effects ! However tions, theory, based on such foundacorrectly the Newtonian terrestrial aU astronomical explain and it was phenomena, unable to satisfy the philosophical like Einstein. and scientificframe of mind of a man
could

The

matter

had

been

further

believed special theory of relativity. in an aether as taking the place of absolute space. It might have seemed reasonable to physicists and philosophers that accelerated motion relatively to an cether
be able to call should actually exist) would forth forces of inertia. But after giving up the idea

aggravated Formerly one had

by

the

(ifaether
a

of

substantial
was

sether, owing
not

to

the special theory


on
"

of

relativity, it

that acceleration forth forces of inertia.


empirical
an reason

permissible to go Nothing relatively to


"

believing
should
caU there is no

experiment and the stars. that forces of inertia should act in an accelerated railway train we supposing it to be quite alone in the world
"

the other hand, for believing this. In order to make of this kind we cannot get rid of the earth Hence, if our intelligence cannot grasp

On

"

to believe it ! Let us compelled take advantage of this fact and recapitulate for this case what experience teUs us on the one haiid, and reason
are

not

in any

way

on

the

other body quite alone in the universe would have no inertia. This last statement is evidently equivalent to the that the capabiUty assumption, of a body to exercise inertial forces {i.e. is caused to possess inertial

is accelerated relatively to other : If a body bodies, inertial forces are called forth; a single

mass)

solely by the presence of other bodies in the universe. inertia, according Hence to this mode of thinking, is not something appertaining to every body of itself;

96

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

it is caused, on the contrary, by the interaction between it and the other bodies of the universe, just the weight as of a body is caused by the interaction of the body and the earth. As shown driven thought
to be
an a

in

the

foregoing

developments,

we

are

to these

opinions merely on the grounds of the to plausible imagine inertia process ; it is more interaction of the kind described, than to believe
mass
on

that
own

may possess inertia! single body fact based on One important account.

its

experience,

lends additional support is the fact of the arguments, inertial and gravitational mass.

which

to these purdy

proportionality At the end of the first that inertial


mass

abstract between

and are gravitational mass essentially two perfectly distinct ertial notions, but that according to our ejqjerience the inmass of a body is always proportional to its gravitational

part of this book,

we

explained

This fact of experience occurs in Newtonian law, which mechanics as a perfectly independent has nothing to do with all other laws. The mathematical
mass.

classical mechanics would remain if this law did not claim vaUdity. completely unchanged One a could, for instance, imagine priori that for different substances the inertial ratios between differ from each other, just and gravitational masses as they differ for the specific gravities of different substances.

foundations

of

the

For instance times


as

heavy

and

A platinum ball is about three three times as inert as an iron ball


:

size. Let us suppose iron and platinum to of the same different specific gravities, but have equal specific balls of the same two inertia, so that size, one of iron, offer the same platinum and the other of resistance
to

change

of motion.

This

would

have

been

quite

ON

INERTIA

AND

GRAVITATION

97

possible from the Newtonian point of view, without interfering in the least with the validity of its mechanical fundamental law. This law states: The product of the inertial mass and the acceleration is equal to the above-mentioned supposition were fulfilled, the gravitational force acting on the platinum ball would be three times as great as that acting on
force.

If the

the iron ball ; but

to be are since the inertial masses ball would have to fall to earth equal, the platinum with three times the acceleration of the iron ball. Thus between if the law of the proportionaUty inertial and

gravitational

mass

did not

hold

good,

different bodies
"

i.e.in considering air resistance vacuo) fall with different velocities. But that is not the would as we case, can easily convince ourselves with the simple

(even without

in an tube. guinea and feather experiment evacuated between Furthermore, inertial and the proportionahty been has by mass accurately gravitational proved Eotvos'
exactness

e3q)eriments,
of
o-ooooi

which

were

carried out

with

an

per cent. This empirical fact being known, filed it, but of, registered and made
of it !

physicists took note further use no was

to the apply it at once If inertia and gravitation considerations of this chapter. intimately related by the law of proportionso are aUty,

We

can,

however,

the conception strengthen discussed above, according to which inertia and gravitation interaction of bodies. are caused by the mutual In point of fact, we shall see in the following chapter that, in the hands of Einstein, the empirical fact of the this wUl naturally

proportionaUty between inertial and gravitational mass, left imused by physicists for two centuries, became the key to the generaUsation of the theory of relativity.

CHAPTER

XIII

THE

EQUIVALENCE-HYPOTHESIS
shall begin

WE
motion
moment

the generalisation of the theory of relativity by discussing the question : Can imagine that the existence of non-uniform we
escapes
our

observation, and detectable than is the case of uniform this


seems

that it is no motion ?

more

For

the

hopeless, for any change of motion forces of inertia, and these must always reveal produces to us the existence of such change. How curious then that Einstein says : Inertial forces are, of course, always present in non-uniform motions, but their presence does
not

place. that these forces are


unable

compel motion took

us

necessarily

to conclude

that

change

of

We

simply

persuade

gravitational

the observer forces, for he is quite inertia from each We

to distinguish gravitation

and

other ! Let us imagine

illustrate this by
ourselves

the following

example
to
move,

in

lift justbeginning

i.e.

an accelerated rectilinear motion performing upwards. We notice the acceleration by the fact that the pressure bodies on the floor of the lift is sUghtly greater of our fall to than usual ; a body released suddenly would

the

more on a quickly ; a weight suspended ground would etc. spring balance stretch the spring more, From a physiological point of view, the matter becomes
98

THE
more

EQUIVALENCE-HYPOTHESIS

99

striking when an accelerated motion is performed If a Kft starts moving downwards downwards. quickly, the force of inertia is opposed to the gravitational force,
and thus diminishes it. Our body appears to be lighter in weight, and, provided the acceleration is suf"dent, we notice a peculiar sensation in the region of the stomach,
as

whilst

compared to the ground

phenomena with the former case


more

other

behave
:

differently

slowly ;

released bodies fall spring stretched by a

weight

be slightly relaxed, etc. But this would cdl take place in exactly the same would way if the lift reason were or at rest and the earth's gravity, for some suddenly stronger or weaker. of gravitational intensity do, as a matter of fact, take place at the earth's surface, for we are subject to the simidtaneous the earth, the sun, attraction of other, were Fluctuations
and
to

become

this combined effect differs at noon that in the morning and evening. and midnight Since the attraction of the earth far surpasses the other forces, these fluctuations are too small to be felt directly the
moon,

and from

by

distinctly noticeable indirectl in the phenomenon of the tides. Let us Suppose the earth to be so near the sun as to tional enable us to notice the daily fluctuations of the gravitaforces acting at the earth's surface, and let us
our

bodies,

but

they

are

waking up after a long sleep in a liftshut lamp in the interior. We off from dayhght, but Ut up by a suppose the observer to have an exact spring balance by the intensity of the force him, with which he can measure imagine
some
one

If he determine that the of gravitation at any moment. a small tension, he wiU say : shows spring balance " Gravitational force is small now, and since I know that it must now be noon." this is always the case at noon,

100

GENERAL

THEORY
has

OF

RELATIVITY
"

This up, says : need not necessarily be the case ; the intensity of gravitation may possibly be very great at the present moment, but we be moving downwards may with an acceleration."

Another passenger, who

just woken

may suppose the Uft to be moving in a shaft many kilometres in length, where the accelerated motion be kept up for some length of time.) We see from can

(We

the conversation of the two passengers indeed be doubt the existence about

that there
of

can

accelerated doubts of also ; the question is as to whether motion this kind arise from an insufficient knowledge of facts,
is again the general principle of nature cause of our inabiUty to decide, without reference to the surroundings, which of the two observers is right. We must path as in the first part of this pursue the same
or

whether

book,

when

we

were

discussing

the

special theory

of

relativity.

We

uniform without

stated there that the existence of rectilinear is not discernible by our senses motion

considering the surroundings ; we then went on to say that, by the most exact measurements and observatio in the range of mechanics, we cannot discern

the existence of such motion

; and

finally, we

extended

the law of relativity to all physical processes. That our two lift-passengers are not able to decide by experiments, viz. by weighings, pendulummechanical and fall-observations, which of them is right, is owing between law inertia! and to the of proportionality which is the kejmote of the general it is not valid, theory of relativity. Let us suppose (a possibiUty indicated in Chapter XII) and assume gravitational
mass,

is three times as that the specific gravity of platinum large as that of iron, and that their specific inertias, on In that case all doubts could the other hand, are equal.

THE
immediately

EQUIVALENCE-HYPOTHESIS
be allayed,
as

101

to

whether

the

lift

was

downwards or not. moving motion with accelerated The observers in the Uft would have to replace the iron ball ^which we was will suppose originally hanging
"

on

the spring balance

"

^by

the volume (i.e. equal of only the force of gravity

weight).
can

baU of one-third platinum If the lift be at rest,

into accoimt.-and the platinum ball will strain the spring exactly the same But if the lift move downwards as the iron ball. with

be taken

the spring consists effect on force, diminished by the value of As we have supposed the inertial force acting upwards.
accelerated motion, of the gravitational the

the latter to be weaker for the platinum ball, the tension In of the spring would here be greater in consequence. the same way, pendulumand fall-phenomena with
turn out substances would accelerated liftand in a lift at rest.

various

differently in

an

This, however,
between

is not

the

case

the law

of proportionality

good accurately, Uft passengers cannot

inertial and gravitational mass holds that the and its vaUdity guarantees

possibly
an

decide

by

mechanical

whether experiments, The question now not. of

accelerated

motion

exists

or

arises

t (analogouso

the problem other

the

special

theory
can

of

whether relativity), be thought

phjTsical experiments which a decision can the special problem


were

be arrived at.
of uniform

of, by means of When dealing with

obliged to answer of negative, for reasons number


results

we rectilinear motion^ the analogous question in the

an

empirical
us,

nature

we

had

before of experiments Michelson's {e.g.


Einstein

experiment).
now

all leading to negative At the time

when the

began

his theoretical investigations


under

of

more

general

problem

consideration,

102

GENERAL

THEORY
data
no were

OF
available.

RELATIVITY
Hence, when

no

whatsoever could turn downward out ated with accelermotion and in one at rest, but situated in a weaker gravitational field, he thereby entered the realm of hypothesis, ^whereas the entire structure of the special
experiments differently in a Uft moving
"

experimental that assumed

he

theory of relativity was up of empirical facts.

pre-eminently a rational worldng Those readers who have followed the foregoing developments carefully will be able to how plausible this very illuminating and appreciate hypothesis
supposed
must

have
that

been
a

to

Einstein.

Could

it be

possible

on principle of relativity) for all physical processes, and its generalisation, on the so a purely apparently necessary from other hand, in demand theoretical point of view, and already
"

(the special of nature the one hand, should be valid

law

by

only for mechanical processes, philosophers, as well ? and not for electricaland optical phenomena consist inConvinced that laws of nature cannot contain ence-hypothes of this kind, Einstein set up his Equival-

many

"

at

that

time,

facts. be

though not, explained presently), under the compulsion of any direct empirical Subsequently, experience proved him to

(tobe

entirely in the right, as we shall show in the next For the present, we the shall formulate chapter. In the second chapter of this equivalence-hypothesis.
we

book

designated
act at

any

space in which

electric or

netic mag-

forces
magnetic

in which field. We

point as an every electric or a field. Analogously, we shall call every space gravitational forces are at work a gravitational understand

by

homogeneous

field a part of

space in every single point of which the gravitational direction and the same intensity. force possesses the same

THE
Every
human

EQUIVALENCE-HYPOTHESIS
dwelling
on

103

the surface of the earth can be looked upon to a close degree of approximation as a homogeneous gravitational field, since the variation of the magnitude and direction of the gravitational force from point to point within the walls of a house is
infinitesimally small. Furthermore which inertial forces are present, an lift, for instance,
motion, Now
an

call space, in inertial field ; in a


we

is moving which inertial fieldis present.

with

accelerated

that the two passengers in maintains the liftcannot decide by any physical experiments whatever, whether the decreased tension in the spring balance is caused
of gravity, or by a downward acceleration of the lift. With reference to described, the ideas of inertial and gravitational field just formulate this statement as follows : With we can
a

Einstein

by

momentary

diminution

respect

to all

physicalphenomena,

homogeneous

is field entirely equivalent to


constant

an

gravitational inertial fieldroduced by a p

was rectilinear acceleration. This assumption designated by Einstein as the equivalence-hj^othesis.

CHAPTER

XIV

CURVATURE

OF

RAYS

OF

LIGHT
FIELD is

IN

"

GRAVITATIONAL

THE
in
a

equivalence-hypothesis

bridge between

how
in

tation. of relativity and the theory of graviTo find the laws of physical processes homogeneous gravitational field,we must calculate these processes take place in a uniformly accelerated

the theory

sjretem of reference ; according bound question all processes are in both


an

to the
to

hj^othesis
place in

take

way exactly the same Let us demonstrate

cases.

hypothesis

by

simple

application of the equivalenceWe a will suppose example.

lift moving constant velocity, and upwards with horizontally outside a imagine ray of Ught to move During the lift and enter it through a hole in the wall.

by the hght to required a traverse the chest, the latter moves short distance so that the light-ray strikes the opposite upwards, lower than the hole. To the wall at a point sUghtly thus of the lift the path of the hght-ray passengers
the minute time-interval appears
to

be inclined downwards has

(This phenomenon
astronomers
as

zontal. and not to be horilong been known to

inclination of the path naturally increases with the velocity of the chest. Now if the chest possesses a uniform acceleration, its velocity

The aberration.)

CURVATURE

OF

RAYS

OF

LIGHT

105

will increase with time, and the inclination of the ray of light after traversing the chest will be greater than at The so that it describes a curved entrance, path.

inference is clear : Rays of light describe curved paths in an accelerated system, and since an accelerated system is equivalent to a system at rest in a gravitational field, it follows that light will suffer curvature in a gravitational field.1 Rays of light will be curved downwards,
the attracting mass ; the path of a ray of to the path of a light is, therefore, similarly curved is so infinitesimal owing to bullet, only the curvature
"

i.e. towards

magnitude of the velocity of light, that we determine the deviation from caimot rectihnearity in the earth's gravitational field. The matter is different,

the

enormous

however, Einstein

in the far greater gravitational field of the calculated that a ray of Ught travelling

sun.

just

Umb would suffer a deflection of i-y".^ past the sun's influences our The way this circumstance astronomical observations is illustrated in Fig. 4, in which the
stellar distances
are

immensely

reduced,

whilst

the

deflection of rays of hght is exceedingly magnified. E is the earth, S a star, and H and H' respectively the As long as the sun in two different positions. is sun
sufficiently distant from the connecting line ES, rays of light travel practically in a straight line, but when the sun arrives at the position H', they are transmitted in the slightly curved the
"

line SPE,
the
star

earth
The

sees

and an observer situated on if it were as situated at S'.

only result in the curvature considerations of field. Calculations light-rays in a homogeneous gravitational in any is the case however, that this teach us, gravitational homogeneous or not. field, whether

foregoing

In

Chapter

XVIII

supplementary

note

will be

added

on

this point.

106

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

in order to verify if Einstein is right, we should, for instance, have to photograph a zodiacal constellation

Hence,

of stars at the time

the

sun

is situated in it, and

then is in

again at another

period of the year, v^en another

the

sun

The posipart of the sky. tions of the stars on the two graphs photowill not quite coincide, but
will, according
to

Einstein's

thesis, hypo-

ments. displaceshow small mutual Though these displacements


are

very

small

indeed

(theyamount
on

to only

used

mm. about -^ in Eddington's

the plates expedition,

where

the the

effect

was

finally observed

mical accuracy of astronois great enough measurements to determine the effect in question

(~\ ^^^
H

IT irfi"

The difiSculty lies certainty. the starred elsewhere ; in general heavens in the vicinity of the sun with
cannot

be
the

photographed glaring

at

all,

sxmlight would blurring of the a cause complete during the long time negatives of

because

I
E
Fig. 4.

ejcposure

necessary

to

receive

the plate. picture of the stars on It ^as therefore necessary, in order to carry out observations, to wait for
can which star-photographs by night. The first total

total solar eclipse, during be taken just as they can


a

of the bending of solar eclipse after Einstein's prophecy light-rays in the sun's gravitational field took place in

August

1914,

just after the

war

broke

out, and

owing

CURVATURE
to

OF
to

RAYS
over

OF

LIGHT
though

107 full

this it had

be

passed made.

unused,
next

Two 1919. to were equipped, under the leadership of Eddington, take the necessary photographs ; one went to Sobral in Brazil, the other to the Principe Islands near the west In both places the photographs taken coast of Africa. during the solar eclipse were successful. A few months later, when the
sun

had been preparations place on the 29th of May

The

eclipse took British expeditions

had

moved

sky, control plates of the same instruments, and then the necessary measurements same tion The results confirmed the defleccould be performed. predicted by Einstein. The reader will readily judge what the result of this for the Einstein theory ; it meant successful prophecy signified the last Unk in the chain of proofs for the of rays of light by the amount

sufficiently far in the stars were made with the


on

validity of
conception
once

general theory of relativity,and of Einstein's Let us recall the development of gravitation.


more

First of all

we

had

to

do

With

the

special

referred only to relativity which valid for all rectilinear uniform motion, but which was Then, for reasons of a theoretical processes of nature. a generalisation of were we nature, obliged to demand

theory

of

this principle for arbitrary motions this generalisation for mechanical in the form

also ;

we

could state with


certainty

processes

of an equivalence-principle, since we in this by the empirical fact of the were supported proportionality between inertial and gravitational mass. The extension of the equivalence-principle to allphysical processes
was, a at first, hypothesis

only ; there

was

no

of that kind. actual experience to compel an assumption do possess Since the solar eclipse of 1919, however, we in this matter ; we find a natural empirical knowledge

108

GENERAL
which

THEORY
is not only

OF

RELATIVITY

explicable on the basis but the of equivalence-h57pothesis, exactly which coincides with Einstein's predictions ! It is true, those opposed to the theory of relativity tell phenomenon
us

that the deflection of rays of light in the sun's tational gravifield might be otherwise explained, as for instance by the refraction of rays of light in the atmosphere Of course it is always of the sun. possible to

by explain an established natural fact subsequently hypothesis invented ad hoc, but Einstein's original some explanation, based as it is on the compulsion of profoimd thought,

the

sun

Moreover, the exwill be given preference. planati of the deflection as due to the atmosphere of is to be completely for other reasons.

rejected

If the

sun

magnitude the observed would

be needed to cause would deflection of light, certain other phenomena be observable, but this is not the case.
as

possessed an and density

atmosphere

of such

immense

CHAPTER

XV

THE

RELATIVITY

OF

ROTATORY

MOTION

BEFORE
and thought
once as

proceeding,
to
more,

we

convenient

take
so as

shall find it necessary train of up the fonner not to lose the general

The theory of relativity survey of logical connections. fiction the idea of absolute tends to banish as an empty is necessary to ehminate space from physics, hence it
both imiform This leads and accelerated motion. rectilinear motion to the further conclusion that inertial forces can only meaningless
for accelerations which are relative to other appear bodies of the universe, and not for absolute accelerations inertial mass ; in other words, the of a body is
"
"

the idea of absolute motion,

caused
to

us

by its interaction similarly to the gravitational mass with all other bodies. These considerations lead Its validity for the principle of equivalence.

from the beginning mechanical processes was guaranteed by the empirical fact of the proportionality of inertial its validity for optical processes by the successful prewas proved subsequently diction of the deflection of light-rays in the sun's gravitational field.
to

gravitational

mass,

and

for the results of observations made to work during the solar eclipse, Einstein continued confidence in the truth of his theory, with unbounded

Without

waiting

X09

110

GENERAL
that it
was

THEORY
completed

OF

RELATIVITY

so

splendid
structure

confirmation theory had of Newton's

four years before Eddington's followed. fundamental The


to be pulled down to

for the new room edifice. The make Einstein's train of thought has been made how it was continued will be best made the motion. know We problem

begiiming
dear

of

already ; dear by contemplati of rotatory

of the

rdativity

that centrifugal forces appear in rotatory Newton that in the case motion, whence concluded of is reasonable. rotation the idea of an absolute motion devised to show a He this experiment well-known

empirically : A bucket of water is set into quick rotatory does not partake Owing to inertia the water motion.
but is gradually set rotating of the motion immediately, by friction with the sides of the bucket, until the whole mass rotates of water velocity as the with the same bucket. As
soon as

this is the

force becomes does not remain

in the form of a concave mirror ; water particles rise up the sides of the bucket under the influence of centrifugal forces. At first,when the sides of the bucket rotate, but not the curved
water,

: apparent flat but becomes

the effect of centrifugal the surface of the water


case

the surface of the water (as remains quite even being a sure ascertained by Newton), ^this proof that no He argued thus : centrifugal forces are then at work. At the beginning of the experiment the rdative motion
"

the sides of the bucket and the water is greatest, and yet no effect is perceptible. Afterwards, however, when there is no relative motion between the bucket and the water owing to the water partaking of the rotation,
between

centrifugal forces appear, absolute rotatory motion

hence

they
on

must

depend

on

and

not

relative rotatory

RELATIVITY
This motion. first,but when
maintained, Newton's
"

OF

ROTATORY
seems

MOTION

111

as

at plausible enough submitted to rigid criticism it cannot be He says : stated distinctly by Mach.

conclusion

experiment

teaches

us

that

with the rotating water bucket noticeable centrifugal forces do not

appear for the rotatory motion of the water relative to the sides of the bucket, but they appear as the result of rotation relative to the mass of the earth and the say how the experiment turn were out if the sides of the bucket would made increasingly thicker and more massive, up to, say, several
can

heavenly

bodies.

Nobody

nules known

thick. and facts

Only
we

this

one

must

make

has been perexperiment formed, it consistent with the other


not

of

nature

and

with

our

arbitrary

fictions." arising from the to be proof earth's rotation, and considered by Newton In this case of the absolute existence of this rotation. We
now

proceed

to those phenomena

centrifugal angular
cannot

forces

are

so

minute,

owing

to

the

small

Velocity

(one revolution
on

be perceived instruments they

our

own

per day), that they bodies, but with refined

doubt. proved without Moreover, their effect appears in the fact of the earth's bodies These centrifugal forces act on oblateness.
can

be

the earth's surface. There is another t3rpe of force, also caused by the earth's rotation, but acting bodies in motion relatively to the earth's surface. on
at rest
on

These

Coriolis-forces," and are manifested called freely along in deflections suffered by bodies moving the earth's surface ; these deflections are to the right on the northern hemisphere, in the direction of motion
are

"

and

to the left

If a prothe southern hemisphere. jectil it will for instance, be shot due southwards,
on

112

GENERAL
travel quite

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

not

deflected very direction, for the during


of

but will be accurately southwards, slightly to the right, i.e. in a westerly


rotating earth goes on eastwards Other effects the bullet is travelling.
are on

the time

the

Coriolis-force trade-winds

the

following

greater

wear

the northern the direction of and tear (in

easterly northhemisphere, the

the

motion)of

the

right-hand rails of railway tracks, the greater wearing down river banks, the rotation of the of right-hand in Foucault's pendulum-plane pendulum experiment,
and view, "the
so on.

Considered

from

the

Newtonian

point
statement,

of

all these phenomena earth rotates," has and that


rest

prove
an

that

the and
to

absolute

earth

at

it would be wrong the fixed-star and

real significance, the suppose rotating

system

round it. Let us again hear what Mach has to say on the subject Let us consider the point on which Newton : concerning the appears to lean with full justification,
"

distinction between

relative and

absolute

the earth performs an absolute rotation their appearance, centrifugal forces will make become flattened, the acceleration of gravity equator
will be diminished, the will be turned, etc. pendulum if the earth be at rest, and will disappear heavenly bodies rotate round it absolutely, way that the
same

If motion. about its axis,

it will near the

plane of Foucault's AU these phenomena the other in such a It is place.

relative rotation takes But if so, if we start from the idea of absolute space. keep to the basis of facts, we can we only speak of All motions in the relative space and relative motion.
Universe
are

according

relative to each other, both to the Ptolemaic and the Copernican system. the
same

RELATIVITY
if
we

OF

ROTATORY

MOTION

113

notice of the unknown and unconsidered Both are medium of the Universe.^ systems equally practical. right, only the latter is simpler and more
no

take

The
earth

Universe
at

has not been

given

us

twice

over,

with an earth in rotation, once, are and with its relative motions which alone Hence determinable. be we cannot say how it would
rest and

with an but only

if the actual

earth
case

did

not

rotate.

We
but if

can

interpret

the

in different ways,
to experience,
our

we

interpret it in

contradiction will be wrong. might

mode

of interpretation

The fundamental

be regarded in such a way result also for relative motions." Thus the conflict between the Ptolemaic earth
at

principles of mechanics that centrifugal forces

S5rstem

rest)and

the
to

Copemican

earth)

is, according

Mach,

system irrelevant ; both


"

(the (rotating
tljeories

maintain nothing essentially different ^Iheyare merely fact. different interpretations of one and the same In this Mach which clearly sets up that programme was turned into account about thirty year^ later by
Einstein.

this, it was card In order to accomplish necessary to disNewton's with its ideas of absolute mechanics, his theory of gravitation. According acceleration, etc., and the Ptolemaic to Newton, sjretem is not only more
inconvenient quite

than the Copemican


The

system, but is indeed

impossible.

reconcile the Ptolemaic system forces and CorioUs-forces with the fact that centrifugal do not act on the stars act at the earth's surface and
*

point of view of the we How can follows :


"

the maintains physicist who Newtonian theory questions as

Mach

means

by

discarded,

however,

has already this the light-aether, which by the special theory of relativity.

been

114

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

scattering them really rotate round the earth), into space ? A relativistic mechanics and theory of No : (i) give us the following answer gravitation must
"

they (if

perceptible centrifugal forces appear in the fixed stars, for acceleration relatively to no more nothing calls forth inertial forces than rotation relatively to ing nothforth centrifugal forces,^ and the mass can call of
"

"

"

"

the earth is indeed a mere in the universe. the masses

nothing compared (2)If we assume

with aU the earth


on

to be at rest, then centrifugal and

Coriolis-forces

the

earth exerted With

must

be

looked

by the revolving the first answer

gravitational celestial bodies.


upon
we

as

forces

overthrow

Newtonian
in view of

mechanics

(whichwe
of

were

obliged to modify with

the special theory


answer

the second his theory of gravitation, for acwe overthrow cording law of gravitation,^ the gravitational to Newton's and relativity), bodies

acting on each other depend on distances the masses of the bodies and their mutual Thus fixed apart, but not on the state of their motion.
as stars considered revolving act, according to Newton, with

forces between

stars regarded

as

earth would no other force than fixed being at rest, i.e.with no force at all,
on
a

round

our

for the
"

fixed stars

the

average
case a

are

uniformly

dis-

Since rotation

and centrifugal forces.


'

is only forces are

special again

of non-uniform

only

special

case

motion, of inertial
two

It

runs

thus

The

gravitational
for

force

acting

between
to

duct proinversely to the square their masses and proportional of if the earth were Hence, twice as far their distance apart. of as is actually the sun the case, distant from the attracting force
would three be only one-quarter of that actually existing ; if it be one-ninth, times as far distant, the force would
were

bodies

(sun and

earth,

instance)is proportional

the

and

RELATIVITY
tributed
round
our

OF

ROTATORY
and

MOTION

115

solar system,

their forces thus

neutraUse each other. A truly relativistic theory however, that constructed,

of gravitation

must

be

so

the

rotating

gravitational centrifugal

of system field which

to according fixed stars must

its formulae

and

is equivalent Coriolis-forces. Furthermore,

a produce to that of the

truly

in mechanics be must general relativistic law of motion in such a way as to admit of inertial forces constructed only for relativeaccelerations, rotations, and so on.

CHAPTER

XVI

THE

NOTION

OF

SPACE-CURVATURE

AND

OF

WORLD-CURVATURE the
the last chapter mark
we

IN
out
more

have

explicitly pointed

Einstein's speculaat by aimed tions, finally attained by him. A was which detailed presentation of the theory which realises here
set

the

demands

up,

can

only

be

with the help of higher mathematics.^ some, help of any mathematics, at least, of the most be elucidated, characteristic traits of the theory can this is best carried out by the application of the special theory of relativity (as far as is reasonably
and

given exactly Without the

of the rdativity of rotatory problem In the place of discussed in the last chapter. motion huge circular disc let us suppose a our solar system freely poised in space, and so thin that it exerts only
to possible)

the

above very small gravitational forces. Immediately this disc and concentric with it, we suppose a second The centres of both discs disc of equal magnitude.^
are
"

supposed
In

to be connected
theory

by

an

axis, round
demand

which

the

general

accessories physicists. acquired by mathematical " For the sake of simplicity and clearness
"

of relativity the amount exceeds

the

for mathematical formerly of knowledge


" "

we

speak

of

top-

and

bottom-

"

disc, though
"

we
"

are
"

aware,

meaningless

to talk of

top

and
xi6

bottom

"

that it is of course, in the Universe.

SPACEboth
discs
can

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE
The
lower

117

rotate.

disc is to be at rest

relatively to the system of fixed stars, and the upper is to rotate relatively to it. We one to imagme are both discs inhabited by intelligent beings, provided with including, of course, of phjreical apparatus, For the sake of brevity measuring-rods and clocks. Reds we will call the inhabitants of the top disc the
aU
sorts
"

"

The Reds Whites." those of the lower disc the will observe the occurrence of centrifugal and Coriolisforces on their disc ; if they have acquired the rdatiand of thought explained in the last chapter, vistic mode they will know that the existence of these forces can be interpreted in two ways, either as inertia! forces, ifthey
"

"

consider their disc in motion, or as gravitational forces by the revolving firmament exerted of fixed stars, if they consider their own disc to be at rest. (If, indeed, their
a

through

mode of thought different development and

in

physics from ours,

gone which led

had

would perhaps not be tions. able to realise that there exist two different interpretaence Perhaps their theory does not recognise the differ-

via GaUlei

Newton,

they

between
by

the

way.)

inertial and gravitational mass. Let us further suppose them to

This be in

communication with the Whites, and always to compare their time- and length-measurements with those The Reds living in the of their lower neighbours. immediate vicinity of the axis will have a small velocity situated below them, and in relatively to the Whites ence the effects of length-contraction and differconsequence
of dock-motion those living at the wiU be immeasurably of the and clocks of both Whites and Reds wiU measuring-rods But it is different for those living practically agree.
centre

For small. disc, therefore, the

118

GENERAL
the periphery

THEORY
of the disc.

OF
To

RELATIVITY
plainly speak more that the diameters

near

we shall assume concretdy, equal to the diameter of of the discs are approximately the earth's orbit (300,000,000 km.),the angular velocity The velocity corresponding to one revolution per week.

and

of a point at the edge of the top disc relatively to the lower disc will be about 5,000,000 or 6,000,000 km. per With these velocities hour, or 1500 km. in the second. by the special the contractions in length demanded theory than
of relativity
XTT

P^^

they stDl amount (although will be just measurable cent.)

to less

and

the

different motions of the clocks will also be noticeable, if the results of the special theory of relativity (which derived were expressly only for rectilinear uniform

motions) are
motion.

apphable transference

at

all to

A
to

of the

theory

moving non-uniformly Umit the contemplation to very small permitted if we i.e. to smaU spaces and short times. world-elements, a relatively small Thus, if we contemplate region near of the upper

of rotatory results of the special can systems only be

the

case

the edge

the size of the for a short and follow its movement earth's surface) the motion time, e.g. a few minutes, of this r^on region on the lower disc relatively to a corresponding will be practically quite uniform and rectilinear. Hence can we apply the results of the special theory of relativity with a clear conscience. like all other According to this, the measuring-rods, belonging to the marginal regions of the top

disc

(say about

objects

disc when
wUl appear in the same
must

considered shortened way


as

from

the

lower

stationary

disc,

in the

the motion
compared

direction of motion, and of the clocks of the Reds

be slower

with the motion

of clocks

SPACE-

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE
Measuring-rods

119

of the Whites themselves being perfectly equal, and in agreeamong ment with those of the Reds who inhabit the vicinity of the disc's centre, it follows that the lengths of measuringrods and the motions of clocks will be different for the Reds inhabiting the margin ing and for the Reds inhabitWe know the centre. that contraction takes place hence of motion, only those measuring-rods of the Reds will be shorter which are laid down to tangentially (parallel the disc's edge); only in

belonging to the Whites.^

the

direction

those laid down

to radially (perpendicularly the disc's edge)agree with the corresponding rods of the Whites, to measure When therefore the Reds and Whites come

the diameters result


measure

(inour
the

of their discs, both will arrive at the same km.). But if they 300,000,000 example

of their discs, they will arrive at different results, for the Reds are measuring and will have to lay with shortened measuring-rods

drcimiference

them

down

oftener

to

get

round

the

disc than

the

Whites.

For them, the resulting figure for the circumference of their disc will be greater than for the Whites.^
on

VII. An explanatory p. 49, Chapter be added in Chapter XVIII, p. 153. will 2 the following this conclusion Against objection has
'

Gf. footnote

note

only will measuring-rods but also the entire circumference suffer contraction, the measuring-rods, disc, and in the same as proportion

been

"

raised

Not

laid down

often ally tangentiof the for it

tangentially in the direction of motion. figure for the length of the circumference for the Reds as for the Whites." This
runs

Hence
must

the resulting be the same


does

however, objection,

draw from one the cannot conclusions good, because the circumference of the disc special theory of relativity about As mentioned the results of this theory as a above, whole. be applied to cases can only motion, of rotatory when very dealt with. See Supplementary are small space-time elements
not

hold

Note

on

p. 166.

120

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

Consequently the diameter Reds


than
"

the ratio between the circumference and of the circle will be a different one for the

for the

Whites.

The

ratio

"

and

this is

remarkable

magnitudes. top disc draw

^will be different for circles of different If the Reds living at the centre of the
a

relatively small circle (witha radius of the ratio only a few kilometres) and then detennine between diameter, they will find circumference and number Ludolph-number
same as

the

the

Whites
.

the {i.e.

well-known
once

3-14159265
letter

.,

designated

and

for all by the Greek


are

ir),

only shghtly contracted. intermediate zone a of the top disc draw circle, the diameter is about diameter, of which equal to half the disclarger number they will find a somewhat than TT, and the inhabitants of the periphery of the disc will find still greater number, since the measuring-rods laid down by them tangentially will be contracted most
a

for their measuring-rods If the inhabitants of an

of aU. The

inhabitants

of the

top

disc will, according

to

their experiments their and arrive at a different geometry disc. Whereas


the

geodesic measurements, from those of the lower

ratio between circumference and diameter of circles will always be equal to ir for the Whites, quite independently of the magnitude of the
as circle (just for the Reds

we

learned at

this school),

only approximately, and those circles of dimensions small as compared with the disc on which they live. Deviations from this law are greatest for circles comparable the disc itself. The Reds
use are

law holds good agrees best for

with

might objection

the magnitude of be raised that the because periphery they


; but

wrong

in their measurements,

contracted

measuring-rods

at the

SPACEif reproached
"

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE

121

replying
we

:
are

in be justified with this, they would According to a general principle of relativity fully justified taking up the point of in

view that we are at rest, whilst the lower disc and the fixed stars move Hence for us there need us. around be no such thing as a contraction of measuring-rods ;

such
and

as

they

are,

they

lead the results derived these measurements for us, us' to that geometry, which is the right geometry because it fitsin correctly with our experience." We of shall be able better to appreciate this mode thinking if we leave the Whites and Reds for a moment Let us turn to fiction again the earth. to be beings of only two dimensions,^ and suppose men from the earth's can who neither raise themselves surface nor penetrate into the earth ^theidea of a third and
return
to
"

give from

us

correct

measurements,

dimension
itself to
to

or

the

mere

them.

To the

possibility of it never presents begin with,, it would occur never


surface
was

them
"

that

earth's
a

not

curved, strange

^the idea of to them and

curved surface would inconceivable, though

plane but be entirely the notion be familiar

of curved
to them.

and straight lines would, of course, All great circles on the earth's surface

(for

instance,

be the equator) would meridians and straight lines to them, i.e.lines continuing in the same A line, however, which first ran in a northdirection.

the

south direction, and then turned be a curved line. west, would determined
'

more

and

more

to the

This

by

these

two-dimensional

could be readily inhabitants of

The

have thin

is, of course, height ; we should missing third dimension flat beings somewhat like infinitesimally to imagine these in a horizontal leaves of paper position gliding along the

earth's surface.

122

GENERAL
earth, is for the
are

THEORY
two

OF

RELATIVITY
north-south and Surface curvature,
curvature

the

dimensions, disposal.

east-west,

at

their

however,

different matter.

The

be described thus : We earth's surface can a tangential plane at that point of the terrestrial globe in which we are situated (a horizontal ; then we

of our imagine

plane)

touch

earth's surface vanishes beneath the plane (aship receding from us on the ocean below the horizon).Now, if the ideas of disappears
" " "

this plane,

whilst

the

above

and

below

"

are

strange to two-dimensional has no significance at aU to them, and the curvature the earth's surface would be quite inconceivable, or

absolutely unknown and beings, this latter statement of


at

beings least not obvious. Nevertheless, two-dimensional would be able, given sufficient progressive development,
to

arrive by

abstract

mathematical
"

reasoning
"

at

the

to the surface curvature conclusion of attributing To understand inhabited by them. this we will suppose them to begin measuring the ratio between circumference for circles drawn on the earth's surface. and diameter

with the circumfere again, for circles small compared of the terrestrial globe, the well-known it would result, but the ratio would be less than number This is plausible for circles of greater magnitude. IT Here,

enough

Let

us

imagine

circle of latitude 60". for us three-dimensional

the circle in question to be the The real diameter of the circle beings is the chord AB (Fig. 5),

line through the earth's interior connecting two between diametrically opposite points A and B of of the circle. The ratio between the circumference v. this circle of latitude and the chord is, of course,

i.e. the

The notion

of the earth's interior cannot exist, however, beings. They for two-dimensional of the only know

SPACE-

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE

123

earth's surface, and


straight connecting of latitude which

according to their perception the line between two points of a circle


lie diametrically

opposite

to

other is the part ANB The the two points.

greater than that hence the ratio of the circumference of the circle to the line ANB is smaller than the ratio of the circumference

of the meridian going is length of this meridian-Une of the corresponding chord AB ;

each through

of the circle to the path AB, considered If two-dimensional diameter. real


"

by

us

to be the
were

"

beings

to

determine

resulting from their experience therefore contain the following law concerning would the circumference the ratio between and the diameter This ratio depends on the magnitude of circles : of Geometry
"

equator be only two.

the circumference the ratio between and its diameter, the resulting number

of the would

the

and

circle ; for small circles it reaches the hmit for larger circles it decreases, reaching the value

tt,

124

GENERAL
a

THEORY
a

OF
of

RELATIVITY
km."

for

circle with

diameter

20,000

maticians Mathe-

beings would the two-dimensional amongst be able to show that it is possible to imagine a fictitious the circumference surface for which the ratio between for all circles, of their magnitude, and, furthermore, for which this ratio that surfaces could be imagined than on the earth, e.g.so as to be equal would vary more Lastly, they to 2 for a diameter of i km., and so on.

of a circle and independently

its diameter

is equal

to

ir

show that surfaces are imaginable for which this ratio increases with increasing diameter of the circle, larger than ir.* i.e.becomes Mathematicians would go distinguishing these to discover that the quaUty on might
various surfaces from each designated as "curvature," with other can for they

be conveniently could determine

of science and simply by calculation, beings know from we three-dimensional merely what t surface (plane)he ratio observation : On an imcurved

the

help

between

the circumference and

of

circle and

its diameter

is constant

the

ever, equal to n- ; with curved surfaces, howthis ratio varies for circles of various magnitudes, more the greater the curvature so (supposing,f o that the diameter is always measured along the

course,

surface
1

itself).
are on

Saddle-surfaces
curved line

surfaces
an

of this kind.

Let

us

imagine

in ordinary riding-saddle, and drawn that the shortest distance measured such a way along the saddlefor all surface from the centre of the saddle is exactly the same line would be a circle for twothis line. Such a points on

closed

" " the saddle-surface, and for these circles is greater than t. the ratio between circumference and diameter the ratio between Surfaces where circumference and diameter " " the value ir are exceeds called, in mathematics, circles of

dimensional

beings

on

surfaces

with. negative

curvature.

SPACE-

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE

125

lead to the following : It is considerations that we are, in point of fact, owing to the circumstance have been abld at a three-dimensional beings that we
to early stage (in times of antiquity) acquire the knowledge of the earth's spherical shape. This circumstance, however, was not a necessary condition for the definite attainment of this knowledge.

These

comparatively

Mankind
he had

would been a

if able to attain to it even being, provided that two-dimensional

have

been

Uke Gauss, for instance, had been great mathematicians cal at his disposal, in order to take the necessary geometrimeasurements.

But of the

in

this

case

the

knowledge
never

of the curvature have penetrated


been

earth's

the

pubUc

surface would for it would mind,

have

inconceivable
more

remained We
"

or

It would have and tminteUigible. less the sole property of the mathematically
to

educated. fold it reasonable about


our

now

ask
"

the

question

How

three-dimensional
ajid all the stars ?

space,

the solar system in a similar are we


dimensional beings depart fourth

embracing Concerning it,

position

to

the

fictitious twoearth's
are are

We

carmot
a

in relation to the from it, hence we dimension,


our

surface.

not not

able to
able to

imagine

and

we

judge directly

space possesses curvature or not, i.e.whether space is in three dimensions what a is in two dimensions. ing Accordcurved surface or a plane to the foregoing explanations, it is clear that only whether mathematicians
can geometers It will be as follows

and

this question. school-geometry

as (designated

give an answer : If the laws of EucUdean

to
our

geometry)are

exactly vahd
any magnitude,

in the universe
we

must

for geometrical figures of then say that space possesses

126

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY
spaces space is

no as

curvature.

(Mathematiciansdesignate such

Euclidean

spaces.)
or

On
"

the

other
"

hand,

called non-Euclidean from these laws can

be

curved space, if deviations discovered, e.g. if the ratio

and diameter, for instance, is for very large circles, or the "" sUghtly sum of the angles of very large triangles is not exactly between circumference different from equal to 180". This must be looked
"

upon
to

clear conception thereof would be as futile as the analogous attempt to give fictitious two-dimensional
a

space beings

"

an

attempt

the definition of curved us three-dimensional give


as

"

beings

of the surface on of the curvature conception ture which they live. Hence, when we talk of space-curvain the following, we mean more concrete nothing
a

than that certain deviations

from

EucUdean
measurements

geometry

will appear, if sufficiently exact space be taken.

of the

of this kind might be found the universe had been foreseen nearly a on measuring like Gauss and Riemann. century ago by mathematicians It had become clear to them that the validity of the

The

idea that deviations

laws

accepted on the contrary, they saw like asort that other systems of geometrical laws could be set up, differing from logical contradictions free from and
of

EucUdean

geometry ; of divine dogma

could

not

be

Euclidean

geometry.

Finally,

teach us experience must describe the geometrical

that recognised which of these is suitable to properties of the universe in of fact, Gauss large triangle determine performed

they

live. In point we which on a direct measurements miles in length, to many

with

sides

experimentally actually
amounts

whether

the

sum

of

the

angles

SPACEto

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE
no

127

i8o" in large triangles ; but Every

deviation

was

tectabl de-

teach

us

such that

appear within instruments,

could only negative attempt, of course, deviations from Euclidean no geometry the limits of exactitude of our measuring
or

words, that the curvature of space, if it exist at all, must be very slight. It certainly be maintained in no way that such a curvature can be determinable does not exist. It might at some later date with
on more

in other

much

ments perfect instruments, or by measurefigures. If our larger geometrical

fictitious two-dimensional part of the earth's surface

beings inhabited only

small

(saythe

the kilometres),
EucUdean

aforementioned

size of a few square deviations from

their certainly geometry would elude Now, as we out at the end measurements. pointed X, the spatial extent of the scene of our of Chapter in small number activity is given by a comparatively
units of space, and as a matter of fact, the portion of space inhabited by terrestrial beings is an infinitesimally small part of the visible stellar universe. the
natural
"
"

it is quite possible that we are here in the same beings whom position as the fictitioustwo-dimensional Hence supiposed to inhabit only a small part of the earth's discern the curvature cannot of the space surface ; we Uve in, because all our experience and measurements we
we

refer only to a very small portion of the whole universe. In the discussion of the preceding we paragraphs to have digressed from our theme, and the reader seem has all this to do with the may perhaps ask : What
and with gravitation ? This will relativity of motion The Red : be made clear in the following statement inhabitants of the disc which is rotating relatively to

128

GENERAL

THEORY
arrive

OF
at
a

RELATIVITY
through geometry they of the space
geometry.

the

fixed-star system

careful geodesical measurements from live in, which diverges


Hence, for them, the
case

Euclidean

long ago considered possible by mathematicians has been reaUsed. The space in of which they Uve does not partake of the character

space; space, but of curved, non-Euclidean This does not mean that the surface their circular of disc is to be thought of as curved upwards or downwards Euclidean That this is not the case they shallow bowl. could readily determine, for if they be three-dimensional beings themselves use they can the third dimension
Uke
a

(aboveand below) perpendicular to their if (Besides, the disc's measurements.


like a bowl, the ratio between of the surface and its diameter would
curved and the
out

disc for their surface


were

the circumference be smaller than ir

greater than ir, as observed by the Reds.) On turn contrary, the results of their measurements if the whole three-dimensional as space in which
not

they

work

embedded

carry out their measurements and in a four-dimensional space (which we

were

cannot

it is curved, earth's surface is embedded dimensional space in a manner

imagine)in which

justas
and

sional the two-dimencurved


to
us

in threeis both

which

visible and imaginable. Let us proceed to consider the following : All those by which the top disc are processes on phenomena,

distinguished from

those

on

the lower disc

(theappearance

of centrifugal and
are space-curvature),

Coriolis-forces, the existence of caused by the fact that the top

disc rotates relatively to the firmament of fixed stars, does not. In the foregoing chapter whilst the lower disc
we
saw

clearly, in the

sense

of the Mach-Einstein

con-

SPACE-

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE

129

of those forces could be ception, that the appearance interpreted in a double way : Either as inertial forces, if we or as gravitational consider the disc as moving, forces exerted by the rotating fixed stars, if the disc be

considered

at

rest.

The

same

can

be

curvature

be an of space ; this too may rotation of the disc, or an effect of a gravitational field due to the rotating fixed stars.

said of the effect of the

We
were

have

now :

got

to
see

the

point
a

towards

which

we
a

steering

We

that

-^avitational

field, of

due specialkind (that We

to rotating fixed stars which curvature

create

causes and centrifugal Coriolis-forces)

of space.

tional of this special kind of gravitaciiose the example in this case field, because the appearance of
can

space-curvature higher help of

be

made

plausible

without

the

The mathematics. mathematical formulae of the theory, however, teach us more than this ; not only the special gravitational field dealt
with here, but every gravitational field causes The gravitational field of our of space.
curvature
sun, a

of the certain

earth, and of every body


curvature

in the universe

causes

This
be

of space, characteristic of the fieldin question. is so slight, that it could not however, curvature, hitherto

determined

by

our

available

means

of

measurement.

great mathematicians prediction of our fulfilled in accordance has been with the Einstein differently from what had theory, though somewhat

Thus

the

been

sUght

What they was conceived mately approxiexpected. the following : The universe in itself has a very (inthe sense of the definition aforecurvature
in
a

mentione
we

similar way

as

the surface

on

which

live possesses

slight curvature.

That

the

presence

130

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY
their
was

of gravitating matter had anything to do

(thefixed
this

stars and
curvature

planets)
hardly

dreamt

of

by

with before anybody

Einstein.^

According

to the general theory

Ues thus : of relativity the matter At a great distance from all gravitational masses, space is almost exactly Euclidean space ; in the vicinity of however, it is curved, the curvature gravitating masses,
depending
masses

imagine i.e.as
as
a

force exerted by the in it clearer, we shall as two-dimensional, the universe for a moment Our picture would then be somewhat surface.
on

gravitational To question. make

the

fixed wide regions lying between stars, the surface of the universe would be almost exactly plane, but in the vicinity of every single star there follows
:

In the

shallow convexity, in the mid-point But as the curvature of which the star would be situated. the largest stars is very small, near of space even these convexities would be too slight to be discovered

would

be

sUght

eye, if we had a true-to-nature model of with the naked before us. this world-surface The considerations of this chapter referred to the
" "

of space, called forth by a gravitational no field ; there was question of time in connection with Minkowski Now that according to the them. showed
curvature

special theory

of relativity, space itself plays only the Just as the shadow of a body is part of a shadow. different in magnitude according to the surface on which

it falls,so

the space

taken

up

by any

objectis different
of the system following more
to this
to

in size according of reference from

to the

geometrical
1

which formulation
exception

of motion it is seen. The


state

is equivalent
;

in meaning
seems

With
a

one

foieseen

perhaps coimectioii of this kind.

Hiemann

have

SPACEstatement
:

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE
a

131

surface is only a two-dimensional part of three-dimensional space, so space itselfis not an independent part whole, but only a three-dimensional

Just as

of

the

four-dimensional

world.
sense

(For

those

readers

who
we

do not quite grasp the to the more refer once

of this short statement discussion of Chapter IX.)

In explairing the idea of the curvature of space we said : turn out as if the whole The results of measurements in which they three-dimensional (the Reds) space
"

work and

and

carry

out

embedded

in

their measurements were curved four-dimensional space (which we the two-dimensional earth's
in A three-dimensional

cannot

imagine),just as
to

surface is curved and space, in a way which Li comparing


statement

embedded
us

able." visible and imaginthis sentence mentioned with the aforeof

is both

Minkowski,

the

following

plausible enough : Do the ideas of play a similar and space world," in a certain sense, earth's part in the theory of relativity, to the ideas in classical physics and geometry space and surface assumption
" "

appears
"

"

"

"

"

explained : In pre-relativistic that the earth's surface was a times it was assumed in a nontwo-dimensional curved manifold, embedded i.e. (Euclidean)three-dimensional manifold, curved

Let

this

be

By analogy, is it not permissible space. that the space in the vicinity of gravitating curved three-dimensional manifold

now masses

to

say is a
non-

curved four-dimensional manifold, This last sentence is correct in all but one word ; the be omitted, as applied must non-curved attribute According to the results to the four-dimensional world. of Einstein's calculations, not only space, but the entire
" "

in a embedded i.e.the world ?

space-time-entity,

called by

Minkowski

the

"worldj'

132

GENERAL
be

THEORY
as

OF

RELATIVITY

must

regarded

is, of

course,

still more

What this signifies curved. difficult to define than the


"

itself,because one fails significance of space-curvature " between to see the ideas of tirrie any connection " Hence we curvature." will confine ourselves to and
a

brief suggestion. (asshown in Chapter

Four

IX)

are co-ordinates to determine events

required in nature

ambiguity : the three spatial co-ordinates relating to the place of the event, and one co-ordinate the event states the point of time at which which happened. As there explained, the spatial distance without
be calculated by means point-events can law (47thproposition Pythagorean of the well-known from the differences of the of the firstbook of Euclid), three spatial co-ordinates (difference height, length, of between
two

and

breadth). Formerly

this

spatial

distance

was

independent of supposed to be an absolute magnitude, to the theory of the system of reference. According culate relativity this is not the case, but it is possible to cala

with the help of a generalised magnitude law, and using all four differences of coPythagorean ordinat is designated This new the magnitude
"

world-distance absolute in law (given


case

of point-events, and it has a real generalised Pythagorean significance. This


a

"

of the
^
"

footnote at the end of Chapter IX for the special theory) is contained in "world-

if the laws contained in this worldare analogous to those of plane-geometry, geometry for the simplest description of physical phenomena,

geometry."

Now

"

'

Just

as

talk of plane-geometry, in two dimensions, problems


we

which
and

deals of

with

corresponding

space-geometry

(stereometry)for
course,

three-dimensional
"

talk of

"

world-geometry

so can, we problems, of in the case of four dimensions.

SPACEand if they
are

AND

WORLD-CURVATURE

188

also analogous to those of the stereometry of Euclidean space.^ we then say that the world is Euclidean. When this is not the case, we say that

the world is non-Euclidean (curved).According to the special theory of relativity the laws of the world-geometry hence the Minkowski-world still Eudidean, is Eudidean. But according to the general theory, this is no longer valid for parts of the world surrounding
are

hence world-curvature gravitational masses, there, in the above-mentioned sense of the word.
1

exists

Such

law

is that
of
a

used

the
IT,

drcumference quite

independently

before ; The ratio of example is always equal to circle to its diameter of the magnitude of the circle.
as an

CHAPTER

XVII

THE

NEW

THEORY

OF

GRAVITATION

THOSE
Before

readers who, before the perusal of this book, knew the general theory of relativity to be at the same time a theory of gravitation, may

do we perhaps be disappointed and will ask : Where find the explanation for gravitation in this ; why do all bodies attract each other according to Einstein ? this question we must answering consider the following : To explain a phenomenon to trace means it back to a simpler and more general phenomenon. If
was we were

to

given as reduce it to continuing

explain the cause

this other phenomenon, of the first,we should


we can

which have to

third phenomenon,
manner, answer
"

in this

where no further for instance : us,

But by and so on. finally arrive at a point be given. If a child ask


my
nose

Why

do

I fall on
"

? tramcar we may answer moving to your inertia ; your body retains its motion after leaving the steps of the car, whereas your feet are suddenly friction with the ground. to rest by brought

jump

off

I when ing Ow:


"

That

is why
:

questioning
we a can

down." you tumble Why does the body


"

If the child goes on ? retain its motion

"

give fundamental

no

further law

reason,

but ovly say that this is facts which

of nature.
admit

There

are

certain ultimate

of

no

NEW
further
these

THEORY
;

OF
they

GRAVITATION

185

explanation

is gravitation : AU be explained, and needs no This fact cannot ; it is simpler than any other phenomenon it might that
we

exist. Amongst simply bodies attract each other. tion explanato which

be reduced.
cannot

This leads

us

to the conclusion

expect a theory of gravitation to give We expect the us an explanationof the phenomenon. theory, however, to describe the phenomenon tion. of gravitaThis
must

description

must

be

quantitative,

i.e. it

us provide exactly the motion

under the Newtonian simple


reason

possibihty of calculating of a body, for instance of a planet, The gravitational action of other masses. theory of gravitation has done this in a very

with

the

and there would and unequivocal manner, to depart from this theory, did it not show

be

no

those

pecxiliar theoretical defects referred to at the beginning of the second part of this book. To

the defects of
we

must

According

gravitation possesses an infinite The meaning of this will be velocity of propagation. clear in what follows.' The gravitationeil force made
to consist of the attraction planet is known by sun (forming far the greatest part of the entire force)and that of the other planets. These forces depend on the mutual distances of the celestial bodies,
on a

add a to Newton,

philosophical nature there mentioned, further defect of a physical nature.

acting of the

in the course of time, and wiU be constantly changing Now in accordance with the positions of the planets. that the force acting at a given Newton maintained to be calculated a on say Jupiter ^is planet moment from the instantaneous constellation of the attracting
"
"

masses.

If, however,

gravitation

possesses

finite forces

velocity of propagation; the calculation

of the

186

GENERAL
a

THEORY
on

OF

RELATIVITY
have
to be

acting at

performed between the

certain moment differently : we planets


at

Jupiterwill
not

must

insert the distances

in our precise moment formula, but rather other distances corresponding to an earlier instant, i.e.as much earlier as gravitation needs
that
to travel from

those planets to

Jupiter.

formerly the part of physicists, great doubt was cast on the conception of forces propagated to a distance Even Newton himself on one with infinite velocity.
that he could not believe in action occasion admitted Seen from the point of view of that kind at a distance. of the theory of relativity, this conception is utterly impossible. For,
as

On

expounded

in Chapter

V,

one

of the of be

fundamental

assumptions of the relativity consists in the statement

special theory : No effects can

propagated light. For development,

with greater these reasons,

the Newtonian
an

the velocity of science, with its progressive beyond was at last obliged to advance theory ; but this theory will ever remain
velocity than for all time.

immortal

work

It

was

the firsttheory

to obtain an exact treatment enabled mankind belonging to natural sciences, and in the of problems future it will remain for aU practical purposes almost the

which

exclusive instrument for the physicist and theory

as

theory

of

the astronomer.

approximation Since the Newtonian

of gravitation and Newtonian mechanics be looked upon as the model type of a mathematical can we description of natural phenomena, will first of all
it to exemplify the nature of a description of this kind, and then show how the corresponding description is given by the Einstein theory.
use

The

Newtonian by
means

theory

supplies
we

the
can

apparatus

of which

mathematical calculate the

NEW
gravitational

THEORY
force due

OF
to

GRAVITATION

137

given configuration of at any point in the neighbourhood attracting masses, of This accessory is called Newton's law of these masses. footnote at the end of Chapter gravitation (cf. XV).

any

The description of the motion executed by a body under the action of force is further given by the Newtonian fundamental law of mechanics, which states : If no
will persist in a state If, however, rectilinear motion. of rest or of uniform it, acceleration wiU ensue. The direction a force act on of the acceleration will be parallel to the direction of the force, and the magnitude of the acceleration will be
on a

forces act

body,

that body

equal to the quotient of the force and the inertial of the body. These
laws
were

mass

brought

by Newton

into the form

of

differential equations, and in point of fact, by their aid it is possible to calculate the motion carried out by a body under the action of given forces, or vice versa,
a the forces necessary to impart certain How to a body. state of motion great the efl"ciency by the history of the disis shown covery of this theory was,

to

calculate

of the looked upon triimiphs

discovery which is a planet Neptune as one with full justification of the greatest
"

of human

science,

The

French

astronomer

forces of the that the combined hitherto known planets did not suffice to fully explain There remained a small the orbit of the planet Uranus. the motion discrepancy between calculated, and that

Levenier

had observed

actually

performed.
planet

Leverrier

assumed
cause

that

new

undiscovered
and

might calculated by

be the
means

of

tions, of these deviaNewton's theory

where this planet ought to revolve in order that the forces exerted by it would justbe sufficient to explain

138

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

the disturbances

As a result of this matheobserved. matical thetical analysis he was able to predict that this hypoplanet would be visible at a certain time, and position in the heavens, and,
as

at

certain

matter

of fact, the planet (whichwas afterwards called Neptune) discovered by the Berlin astronomer Galle in the was

positionand at the time indicated.


tion the way in which the descripis given in the Einstein of gravitational phenomena for this purpose introduce a notion theory, and must

We

now

propose to show

of what follows. which is necessary for the comprehension The position a point in space is given mathematically, of in Chapter IX, by three numbers as shown three co^its ordinat
"

the motion of a point is described unequivocally, if its position is stated for every possible Expressed in mathematical terms, of time. moment this
must
means

Further,

The
of
a

that the value of the three space-co-ordinates be given for every value of the time-co-ordinate. formula representing the solution mathematical

matical problem of motion must theref pre be a certain mathedevice, which how to calculate the us shows for any value of the time-coordinate. three space-co-ordinates This device may also be given in a graphical instead of by calculation, i.e.the description of a

be given by a diagram. This is may motion for instance, in the so-called graphical timethe case, by a glance at a charts, which enable railway officials, drawing, trains
us on

way body's

to survey
a

the instantaneous

railway line at every illustrate the graphical description


example,

position of all the Let moment of time. of motion

by

simple point draw

which

shows
a

the

motion

along (particle)
a

vertical horizontal straight line OX (Fig. and 6)

of a massstraight line. We
a

vertical

NEW

THEORY
The

OF

GRAVITATION

139

straight line OY.

straight line OX

is divided into

equal parts representing seconds of time, and the straight line OY into equal parts representing cms. We then draw vertical straight lines through the division points of OX

and describe the motion of a particle as follows : A mark is made on the straight line going through the divisionpoint I by the

second, at that distance from body during the first second

OX

traversed motion

after

Fig. 6,

is made mark going through the division point from OX traversed by the

began.

Another

on

the

straight

line

tance second, at that disbody during the first

more suppose the drawing the position accurately made, for instance, by marking for every tenth or every hundredth of a second, and further, if we imagine all the marks connected together,

seconds, and

so

on.

If

we

we

obtain particle in

line which of the represents the motion vertical direction. If the particle move

140

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

the path traversed during the vdodty, with unifonn first second will be equal to the path traversed in the The corresponding line will then next second, and so on. be a straight line. But if the motion does not proceed In with uniform velocity, then the line will be curved. Fig. 6 the line A represents motion with uniform velocity

downwards,
C

and
us

the line B

shows

accelerated

other

motion upwards. hand, represents

similar motion upwards. downwards motion and D retarded The straight line E, on the
particle at rest.
a
"

These
or
a
"

lines

represent the story of motion of point, and are designated the particle. make The individual

particle

marks

world-lines in the drawing

material of that that

Any up the world-lines are called world-points.^ be can say in celestial mechanics, special problem, considered to be solved, if the world-lines of the planet
or

comet

in question
can

are

known.

only be represented in a plane if the motion of the particle in question takes place in one in dimension only (fi,g. a straight line).In the case of
The world-lines

of a particle (e.g.otion motion m does not sufi"ce to represent in a a plane drawing circle), the world-line, and a three-dimensional model is needed.
the

two-dimensional

Let
a

us

take, for instance, the example

of the motion

of

particle moving Its world-Unes can

in

with constant be constructed thus : The


on a

drde

vdodty. scribed circle de-

by the particle is drawn horizontally on the table. At

the surface of the paper a mark that point of the cirde which contains the particleat the Then a mark is put 2 cm. high above the time I second.
'The is nothing the graphical else than world-point (Cf.Chapter IX.) point-event." of a
"

sheet of paper lying hdght of i cm. above is made exactly above


a

sentation repre-

NEW

THEORY

OF

GRAVITATION

141

position in which the particle is situated at the time The connecting line of all these marks 2 seconds, etc. then becomes a a screw-line, which resembles spiral
Now the particle runs spring. along a threewhen dimensional curve the (ascrew-line, for instance), worldline becomes four-dimensional a can no curve, and longer be represented by a model. In this case it must suf"ce to describe the motion by means of mathematical formulae only, but even so, the corresponding values of the
are

and space-co-ordinates designated cis world-points,"


"

three

one

time-co-ordinate
the of
sum

and

total of

the world-points
"

belonging

to the motion

one

particle,

as

world-line." A theory suppUes


to

an

exact

description of gravitational

processes
us

if it contains

calculate the

unambiguous rules that liable fluence world-line of bodies under the in-

This is justwhat the of gravitational masses. is fundamentally Einstein theory does, and in what a by a suitable generalisation of the very simple manner, above-mentioned not of a body
states that
a

Newtonian

law

by acted upon body left to itselfpersists in

concerning the motion any forces. This law


a

state of rest

or

of uniform
at rest
or

The world-lines of a body rectilinear motion. in uniform rectilinear motion are straight lines ;

translated

into the terminology

"

of

the Newtonian

law of inertia would

world-geometry," therefore run thus acted


on

body world-lines of a moAong forces are straight lines. When The


are

not

by any
masses

gravitational

body never free of a move can present, however, forces, because it is always beiag acted upon by gravitational force ; hence there can then be no straight That Einstein's agrees very well with world-lines. assertion, according
to

which

the

world

in the neigh-

142

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

bourhood
no

There are is curved. of gravitational masses It is impossible, straight lines in a ciurved manifold.
to
an

for instance, surface, for sphere of the

draw
exact

straight line on straight line would


a

spherical touch the

only in straight

one

all the other points point, whereas Hne would he outside the spherical certain types of unique lines, exactly straight Unes, can nevertheless
"

surface. But every

surface has
not
"

which, though be termed

lines, since they show the straightest least deviation from a straight line, as compared with all in the last We mentioned other lines on that surface. chapter that the meridians and the earth's equator would appear
to be straight lines to fictitious two-dimensional

earth-inhabitants, because for them in the same direction. always run

these lines would Now guishes distinwhat


with shall
on

these lines, and what have they in common this question, we real straight lines ? To answer follows : If two points are given consider what plane,
an

infinite number

of lines

can

be drawn

on

that

But of all these, point to the other. plane from one the one straight coimecting line is distinguished by being be defined the shortest. The idea of a straight line can

directly in this way : It is the shortest connecting line between two points of a plane, or, more generally, of a Now if, on the other hand, two Euclidean manifold. points are given on a curved surface, they cannot always by a straight line which lies completely connected in the surface, because straight lines can^iot, in general, But here again, of the be drawn on a curved surface. be
numerous

lines that

can

be drawn

hne will always points, one that is the line designated above
two

surface between be the shortest, and as the straightest."


on
a
"

NEW

THEORY

OF

GRAVITATION

148

In mathematics, lines of that kind are called geodesic lines. On a spherical surface, the geodesic lines are the great circles {i.e.ircles, the diameters of which c
are

of the sphere, such as the ; meridians and the equator in the case of the earth) a plane on the geodesic lines are, of course, straight

equal

to

the

diameter

lines.
of geodesic lines, Einstein of simple law for the motion established a remarkably It a body under the influence of gravitational force. a body situated in a gravithus : The world-line runs tational

By

means

of this notion

of

law
case.

geodesic line. It is obvious that this law of inertia as a special includes the Newtonian forces are For in places where no acting and is field
a

where world

accordingly is Euclidean

no

gravitational

(not curved).

field exists, the In that case the

geodesic lines are straight lines, hence the world-lines become straight lines, and that is, as before mentioned, law of inertia in the terminology the Newtonian of world-geometry. present, however,
lines will be

field is gravitational the world is curved, and the geodesic C and D in curved Unes like the curves

Wherever

Fig. 6.
It is, of
course,

necessary

for
to

complete

description

of gravitational phenomena besides the fundamentally

This law mentioned. curved by the presence of gravitational world becomes for geodesic lines naturally vary according to masses, This second law, however, can the kind of curvature.

law establish another very simple law of motion the tell us in what must way

formulae and not in only be expressed in mathematical designated by Einstein the These formulae were words.
"

Field-equations

"

of Gravitation.

With

the

advent

144

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

theory of these field-equations the structure of the new It can be charactercomplete. of gravitation became ised
in two
sentences

with

the

foregoing
of

(inteUigible only t discussion)hus :


masses

in connection Owing to the

presence
curvature,

gravitational

the depends

the nature

of which

world suffers bution on the distribe calculated in this move

by

and can of the gravitational masses means of the field-equations. Bodies

world in such a way that their world-lines are In Einstein's theory the field-equations geodesic lines. curved
part as the law of gravitation in play the same Newton's ever, theory ; the law of the geodesic line, howcorresponds to the law of motion of Newtonian

mechanics.^ In the developments


gravitation almost

of the last chapters exclusively, and hardly

we

discussed
at all

spoke

of the problem of relativity, although the considerations of space and to that which led to the idea of curvature took their origin in the relativity of world-curvature of rotatory motion. : Is justifiable the the defects Chapter The
new

following question is therefore theory, here outlinied, free from

theory as presented in of the Newtonian XII, and does it fulfilthe demands set up in Mach's considerations
at

with connection Chapter XV? This

the end
in

of
the the
not

be answered must question Those we notions affirmative.


Newtonian
"The law

entirely

theory
of the

{e.g.bsolute a

objectedto in do acceleration)

line is strictly vaUd only for the for the purof material points ; that sufQces, however, motion poses for the stars are always dealt with as massof astronomy, It would take us too far to discuss points in celestial mechanics. the laws of mechanics which hold exactly for spatially extended bodies according to the general theory of relativity.

geodesic

NEW

THEORY

OF

GRAVITATION

145

This theory at all in the Einstein theory. appear does not deal with forces or accelerations at all, but geodesic lines and with world-curvature. only with
By

introducing

these

new

ideas

of their not being the Einstein theory complies with a far more general principle of relativity than that of the special theory in Chapter III. We said there : exactly formulated
disadvantage
"

(certainly with the obviously intelligible

In different systems

of reference

moving

uniformly

rectilinearly with respect to each other, all natural It take place in exactly the same way." phenomena is true we cannot and generalise this sentence say : In different systems of reference moving arbitrarily and
"

respect to each place in exactly the two different systems


with

other, all natural processes take For if A and B axe same way." of reference moving acceleration relatively to

each

other

with

an

(e.g. rotating

with

ph5?sical processes will take place respect to each other), In the former example in different ways in A and in B. ball which receives of the two rotating discs, a smooth to roll on impact an with rectilinear will continue

disc, reference to the lower with reference to the top one, for, owing to the the ball will have an centrifugal force in this case,
uniform but not

velocity

with

acceleration. outward however, It is stillpossible, fact that only relative motion has

to take

into account
or

the

(whetheruniform

not)

be done by physical significance. That can into a form in which they putting the laws of motion With the Newtonian are valid for all systems of reference.

any

laws
not

this

was

not

the

case.

The

law,

"

body

acted

upon

of uniform
10

force retains its state of rest or " " rest rectilinear motion," is vahd only if
by any

146
"

GENERAL
"

THEORY
are

OF

RELATIVITY
certain "Ms" (called inertial
to
"

or

motion

spoken of

of relatively to

tinguished
sjretems"

systems in

as, physics),

reference for instance,


"

the

lower

"isc of
however,

our

example. refer to the


longer

If the top

"

rest

or

motion,"

disc, the
must

law

is

no

valid, and
in

above-mentioned be replaced by The


law

another. This is not motion

so

Einstein's

theory.

of

line is universally valid for all the fieldway systems of reference, and in the same of the world may be equations, by which the curvature

of the geodesic

given distribution of gravitating masses, for ss^tems of reference moving retain their form Furthermore, arbitrarily with respect to each other. calculated for
a

the laws of electricity,optics, heat, etc., can be accommodated to the new notions of world-curvature, and into a form that is valid for any thus be brought
In this way the new theory of reference. systems fulfils a general principle of relativity which be can thus : Laws expressed of nature can be brought into
a

form

of

which the bodies

does
are

not

alter,

even

when

the motions

to referred

any

systems

of reference
at the

whatsoever. Furthermore, end


of Chapter

we

set up the following demand


"

XV

truly relativistic theory

of

be so constructed that, according to gravitation must firmament its formulae, the revolving of fixed stars a to gravitational field which is equivalent produces
that truly of the centrifugal and Coriolis-forces. Also,
a

law general relativistic mechanical of motion be constructed in such a way that inertial forces must appear only for relative accelerations, rotations, and
so
on."

These

demands

are

as also fulfilled,

has been

NEW
proved
^

THEORY

OF

GRAVITATION

147

which

by direct calculation. The problem lishing of estabbasis, the complete system of physics on a new is more satisfactory than the old system from a

therefore be said to philosophical point of view, can have been successfully solved by the Einstein theory.^
*

To

satisfy these
the

to accept

in Chapter
*

views XIX.

it is necessary, however, claims completely, the finiteness of the universe formulated on

See Supplementary

Note

on

pp. 166-167.

CHAPTER

XVIII

DEDUCTIONS

FROM
THEORY

THE

GENERAL

THE
place

new

tioned, of gravitation, as already menis completely different from the old

theory

Newtonian different notions

theory in its essential traits. Entirely introduced ; world-lines take the are

or and worldaccelerated motion, of uniform takes the place of forces ^inshort, we have to curvature different description of nature. deal with a fundamentally On the other hand, it was clear from the beginning
"

theory that, with reference to numerical results,any new theory only to a could differ from the old Newtonian For all calculations performed on very sUght extent. the basis of the latter theory almost of any absolute
new

precision. to diverge much theory were

agree with experience with If, therefore, the results from

theory, they be discarded

contradict experience would from the beginning. Hence

and Einstein, in

the old have to

that the establishing his ffeld-equations, bore in mind tational resulting laws concerning the motion of bodies in gravifields must necessarily agree approximately with
1

those

of the Newtonian
it turned
out

theory.*
that
the

As

regards

the

Subsequently

field-equations of the
approximately time just the

lead to formulae agreeing which general theory theory, are at the same those of Newton's with
148

GENERAL

THEORY

149

degree of approximation, the matter is similar to that of the special theory of relativity. Here, too, the deviations
from the laws of classicalniechanics and electricity are exceedingly small ; they are apparent only when very bodies are dealt with. When, therefore, swiftly moving falling stone, or the trajectoryf a o under the influence of gravitational force is projectile calculated, the results obtained according to the new theory differ from those obtained from the Newtonian
the

motion

of

theory

that it is absosuch infinitesimal amounts, lutely impossible to detect the difference even with the Only in strong gravitational very finest of instruments. fields are the differences between the results of the old

by

theories within the possibility of measurement. and new So far we know of three phenomena that are bound to turn out differently according to the Einstein theory would according to the older theories. One has already been discussed, and concerns the of them deflection of light-rays in the sun's gravitational field. than

they

To

this

we

must
we

Chapter that
a

XIV

add began

supplementary

our

In remark. considerations by stating

horizontally outside a vertically accelerated chest, and entering it by a small hole, will describe a curved path with reference to the chest. If, according to the equivalence-h5^thesis, assume we
ray of light moving the path of
ones

ray of Ught in
formal

corresponding

gravitational

which,

for

mathematical

This circumstance consideration. that this theory theory ; it shows invented

reasons, alone call for tells in favour of Einstein's is not composed of hjrpothesis

On the contrary, starting from the considerations ad hoc. dealt with in the last chapters, them into a and putting form, led necessarily to formulae are we which mathematical agree as well the Newtonian
or

better

with

experience

than

those

drawn

from

theory.

150

GENERAL

THEORY

OF
way,
a

RELATIVITY
then this indicates

ray of light describes the same path under the influence of gravitation as any material body travelling with the velocity of light, in in short, the light-ray falls a gravitational field. or,

field to be curved in the same that (as can be easily

seen)

Now

for bodies in very rapid motion, the law of motion Einstein's theory differs considerably resulting from law ; in the present case we find that rays of light suffer twice the deflection in a gravitational field according to Einstein's theory that they the Newtonian theory, assuming, according to the Newtonian too, rays of light fall like that in this case, of course, Hence bodies. thus : the matter stands material would from

Conformably
the
sun's

is to equal

be
to

theory of hght, no influence of gravitational field on the propagation of light The deflection would have to be expected.
zero

to Maxwell's

that rays of hght fall in a gravitational field,the result arising from Newton's theory of gravitation is a deflection of the Umb to o-85," amounting passing the sun's deflection of 17" results from Einstein's a whereas The observations of both British theory of gravitation. expeditions proved the latter value to be the right one. Ught-rays Another

according to that theory. to assume we (contrary Maxwell's theory)

However,

if

We good that

know

suited to the experimental examinati phenomenon of the Einstein theory is planetary motion. the orbits of planets to be represented with

by Kepler's firstlaw, which states approximation is a the sun planets describe eUipses, of which first empirically established This law, which was deduced Kepler, was theoretically subsequently Newton

focus.

by
by
was

from

his

theory

the firstgreat triumph

This of gravitation. of his theory, and an historical

GENERAL

THEORY

151

fact in t)xe development As we have abready of physics. basis of the exact mathethe fmidamental mentioned, matical treatment of natural sciences by means of
the Now infinitesimal calculus was then laid down. this law of Kepler does not exactly agree with experience, and also from Newton's theory it only follows with exactitude when solely the attraction of the sun is taken

into account in calculating the motion of the planets. But all planets are acted upon not merely by the attraction of the
sun,

but also by that of all the other planets

Fig.

7.

and when all these are taken into certain sUght deviations from the ellipticorbit account, disturbances of the orbit. termed are result, which One of these disturbances is the so-called motion the

of the solar system,

of

periheUonof planets.

planet its position relatively to the system of does not maintain In fixed stars, but rotates slowly in its own plane. the ellipticorbit of a planet, one focus of Fig. 7 is shown S. (For the sake of clearness which contains the sun The the eccentricity of the ellipse is exaggerated.) but planet does not describe this orbit with exactitude,

The

ellipse described

by

only

approximately,

so

that

second

orbit does

not

152

GENERAL

THEORY
with the

OF

RELATIVITY
placed slightly disthird orbit deviates
a

coincide completely
from
some

first,being

with reference to it, and a the second, and so forth. After thousands through
a

of

tmned
as

revolutions, the certain angle from its initial position,


curve

time, i.e.after elliptic orbit is The

illustrated by the dotted

in Fig. 7.

vertex

the (called periof the ellipse which lies nearest the sun heUon) has then changed its position from P to P'. The motion of the ellipse in its plane is therefore designated
the motion of the perihelion. less in Perihelion motions more or of this kind occur be explained according to all planetary orbits, and can
as

the Newtonian

theory

by

the disturbing

forces due

to

A discrepancy exists only for the planet other planets. viating Mercury, the observed motion of the perihelion defrom that calculated (fromthe disturbing forces) by
an

amount

motion

Now if planetary equal to 43' per century.^ be calculated from Einstein's theory, we

if obtain an ellipticorbit with perihelion motion, even the gravitational action of the sun only be taken into For Mercury this effect amounts account. exactly
to the observed too

small

value of 43" ; for the other planets it is (compared with the disturbances from the

remaining the upon


one

to planets) nearest

be observable. Mercury's orbit is the sun ; the gravitational force acting

it is very strong, and hence the Einstein effect of is noticeable only in the case of this perihelion motion particular planet. The new theory,
on

therefore, gives us the right result ever that very point where the old theory failed. Wherthe old theory, on the other hand, was found correct

measurements, of our within the limits of accuracy Einstein's theory leads to the same results.
'

See Supplementary

Note

on

p. 167.

GENERAL

THEORY

158

In order to understand the last of the three abovedeductions drawn from the general theory of mentioned to the example more must revert once relativity, we

We menof the rotating disc used in Chapter XVI. tioned that the clocks of the peripheral inhabitants of the top disc go slightly slower than the clocks of the inhabitants at the centre. of this statement formulate it more inhabitants
periphery

elucidate the meaning for it)and (withoutgiving reasons


us

Let

precisely.
and

We
the

assume

that

the

of the centre each set up a be This must

inhabitants

of the

goes clock which carried out in such a way correctly. that the measurement of the velocity of Ught with the help of these clocks and by use of a standard measuringWhen the rod, must result precisely in the value c. standard inhabitants

receiving these signals, will state that the time-intervals between to their clocks, are the signals, according not exactly

wireless intervals of exactly looo the inhabitants

of the rim of the disc give light signals or (say timesignals at equal time-intervals
according seconds of the centre, on
to

their

clocks),

This is the meaning but slightly more. that the clocks of the peripheral statement of our inhabitants go more slowly than those of the central " is the reason What If we inhabitants. are asked :
1000

seconds,

for the
answer

we different motiofi of these clocks ? must is the same as that for the contraccause : The tion

"

and the appearance of centrifugal of measuring-rods are forces ; all these phenomena results of the relative the disc and the firmament of fixed rotation between
stars,

in other words, they are results of gravitational Hence, forces exerted by distant revolving fixed stars.
or

by

our

example

of the rotating disc,we

become

acquainted

154

GENERAL
another

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

effect of the gravitational field : clocks stationed at different points of the field go at different Mathematical further teaches us that treatment rates.

with

in this particular gravitational this is not only the case field, but quite generally, in every gravitational field. Furthermore, we can with the help of our example

discern the

manner

field takes

in which this influence of a gravitational As we travel from the centre place.


wiU

movement of the disc to the edge, our by the centrifugal forces ; it is as

be assisted
we were

though
were

If, on the other hand, we going downhill. from the periphery towards the centre
the action

travelling

of the centrifugal forces would overcome, and the feeling would be that of going uphill. In the first case we should be travelling into
slowly, and in the second regions where clocks go more into regions where they go more Now the case quickly. equations of the Einstein theory teach us that this rule holds bound This Thus generally. to be accelerated effect, however Even is if
we

of the disc, have to be

go

upMU,

watch

is

(neglecting other influences). all (like most of the effects of the


million times
could
too

theory of

relativity)many
if
tour
one

small to

be perceptible.
a

succeed

of superhuman surface against its attractive force e.g. from the sun's to the distance of the earth's orbit, the effect would be far smaller than the usual daily fluctuations of our best

mountain

in accomplishing dimensions^

In spite of this, its observation is not chronometers. We impossible. XI that the pointed out in Chapter atoms of luminous gases emit rays of fight of quite definite i single lines (spectral lines)n Now a ray of fight the spectrum of the luminous gas. of a particular spectral colour is nothing else (according colour, which
appear
as

GENERAL
to

THEORY

155

the

considerations
wave

of

II) than an of Chapter perfectly definite frequency.

magnetic electroHence

we

consider an atom which emits sharp spectral lines to be a kind of clock, producing alternate positive and negative electric fieldsin its surroundings at regular
can

time-intervals.
goes
more

Now

if

an

atomic slower

clock

of this kind

slowly,
atom

i.e. emits

substance, of the same spectral lines will be shifted towards the red end of the lines of as with the corresponding compared spectrum

another

oscillations than the colour of its

the other atom. slowest

(Thisis

because

the red rays

are

the

visible spectrum, whilst the violet rays are the quickest).On the- other hand, we know that the frequency and colour of light are connected length, red rays having the longest with the wave length, and violet rays the shortest. Hence we emit light of greater wave say that retarded atoms In agreement with what
we

oscillations in the

wave
can

length.

said above, clocks the earth, on the sun will go more slowly than on " have to go because one against the uphill would in order to get from the sun to attraction of the sun Hence on the sun's the atoms the earth. surface, if
"

they

presupposed for very good will emit light of longer wave reasons), on the earth. length than the corresponding atoms theory of gravitation concerning The result of the new therefore be verified by comthe motion paring of clocks can
act
as

correct

clocks

(which can

be

length of solar spectral lines with the lines of terrestrial sources length of corresponding wave is so small, however, that it lies of light.i The effect

the

wave

must add that the lines have to deal here are not we with which of the solar spectrum lines ; this does not, however, lines, but absorption emission
'

For

the benefit of the

physicist

we

156

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY
The difference
and

at the very limit of exact

measurement.

corresponding 80 biUionths terrestrial light amounts only to about theless, Neverof a centimetre for the spectral lines examined. the delicacy of our methods optical measuring of sunlight
is

wave

length

between

justsufficient to

permit

us

to perceive

the difference.

of the effect,these measurements are extremely difficult ; hence it has not been possible Whereas to arrive at finAl results up to the present. some observers maintain they have detected the effect, that it does not exist, so that we must others maintain regard this point as not yet ffiially settled. If we survey the results of the experimental tions examinaof the new gravitational theory hitherto obtained,

Owing

to the smallness

be said, in view of the verification of two of its results, that the probabiUty for the truth of the theory is very great ; stillit would seem premature to consider it as confirmed beyond doubt.
it must
alter the absorbing
atoms. matter atoms

essentially, since is influenced in the

the
same

period
way
as

of oscillation of that of emitting

CHA

PTER

XIX

THE

HYPOTHESIS
THE

OF

THE

FINITENESS

OF

UNIVERSE that
is not

THE
but
new

recognition
curved

space

Euclidean
up a of the is

(though only slightly) opens

universe. Euclidean,

possibility concerning the conception As long as we were that space convinced


we were

to assume necessarily compelled longer Eire no we that our universe is infinite. But now bound to believe this. This can be best explained by a

two-dimensional

Let us again suppose twoexample. beings on a smooth dimensional XVI), sphere (Chapter to inhabit only a small part and let us imagine them not would of the sphere, so that their measurements the existence of curvature. yet have revealed to them They thus believe the scene of their activity to be a to be asked whether If they were the plane surface.
surface
answer

of their world with


conviction
not

is finite
"

or

infinite, they
be

would
our

It must

infinite ;
an

do conceptions Umit. Beyond


must

permit us to boundary every If at


a

assume

ultimate

go

on

arrived at a earth by measurement


they
were

of the spherical shape of the by voyages round the world, or have gained knowledge they of something would quite unable to grasp previously, namely, the geo-

extending." knowledge

world-surface later date they had

the

158

GENERAL
fact that
a

THEORY
surface
case

OF
can

RELATIVITY

metrical bounded.

This is the

it is nowhere bounded. for any length of time

be finite without being with the surface of a sphere ; It is possible to travel over it

in any direction without arriving at a boundary, and yet it is not infinite. Such but not infinite, are are surfaces, which unbounded designated as closed smiaces. We imagine can quite and number of other surfaces possessing this property, as, for instance, egg-shaped surfaces, ring-shaped surfaces, On the other hand, the following are etc. unclosed
a

surfaces

cylinder-surfaces, surfaces of cones, Only curved surfaces can be closed ; paraboloids, etc.^ a into infinity. on plEine has either an edge, or it runs Geometry known long before teaches us (and this was t Einstein)hat dimensional dosed, the
same

planes,

holds good

for three- and

more-

Now
take space,

A curved therefore be space. space can i.e.it can be finite,without having any limit. is curved, we must since our world-space
"

"

into

account

i.e. our

possibiUty that it is a closed universe is perhaps finite, although it is


the

certainly unbounded. According to Einstein, this assumption, which revolutionises the universe, is not all our views concerning
only that The for this is reason possible, but probable. infinite universe presents certain the idea of an difficulties,independently the Newtonian of whether theory of gravitation or that of Einstein is looked
upon
'

as

right.

Concerning

the

infinite universe,

the

There
a

is

here too
curves.

in the case of one-dimensional analogy distinction can be made between closed and
an

figures ;

The

former
an

are

finite, but

unbounded
the

(a

unclosed biting snake

its

own

tail is

instance) the ;

circle and

ellipse belong

to them.

FINITENESS
following two

OF

UNIVERSE

159

alternatives are possible a priori : (i)The entire infinite universe is filled with fixed stars in such a way that the average density of distribution is about
as

greater than (2)Those visible to us.


great
or

in those parts of the heavens stars, nebulae, and Milky Way

systems visible to us represent a kind of solitary island in the universe, whilst in the infinite regions beyond visible space the density of distribution of the stars decreases gradually things, the observed
to
zero.

Now

(As a matter of unfavourable fact, these do not retain really absolute fixed positions in the heavens, but rather travel to and fro like the
individuals of a swarm about takes place at
a

motions of the to the first alternative.

amongst other fixed stars are

of flies. It is true this wandering rdatively slow rate, so that even


of constellations We must

after centuries a change in the form is hardly perceptible to the naked


conclude, from

eye.)

the slowness of motion of the stars, that the gravitational forces exerted on each other by fixed stars are very feeble. This could not be the case, however,
an

if the

universe

were

equal or greater mean than in our surroundings. Other tell against the second alternative. objections to exist as an If the whole system of ficxed stars were
island in the infinite universe, this state of things could Rather to exist to all eternity. would not continue After aeons the the stars disperse gradually into space. starry sky would longer be visible in the surroundings sun sohtary ; every star would pursue its own of our ceivable path, severed from its neighbours by distances of inconEven the mutual attractions of magnitude.
no

filled with everywhere density of attracting masses

the stars would

not

prevent

them

from

dispersing,

as

160

GENERAL
be shown
no

THEORY
by calculation.

OF
Now

RELATIVITY
it is true
that
we

can

have

physical proof against the possibility of such a dissolution of the universe after trillions of years ; but instinctively driven to repudiate this eventuare we ality. be said that the island-hypothesis concerning our universe cannot be upheld scientifically, but we other expedient if shall gladly revert to some Such an be found. it can expedient is the above-

Hence

it cannot

According to Einstein, Einstein hs^thesis. mentioned the firstof the two alternatives is the right one : on the average whole, the universe is filled with a uniform But it is not infinite ; it is a closed density of stars.
space in the
sense

chapter.

Hence

explained at the beginning of this the above-mentioned ments counter-argu-

against the
We
can

first alternative

can

be

dismissed.

appreciate the idea of a closed universe by translating the whole matter into two dimensions, as We said did before at the end of Chapter XVL we
only extensive regions that lie between fixed stars, the surface of the universe would be almost but in the vicinity of every single star exactly plane, at the centre of there would be a sUght shallow hump
"

there

In

the

which

would
our

as

whole small shallow humps, having and is studded with many (Thisis no contradiction the stars as their centres. distances was to what said before, for the average
between

be the star itself." We must now ment supplepicture as follows : The world's surface taken is a spherical surface of immense extension^

parts
stars

fixed stars are very small compared neighbouring with the girth of the universe, and hence those neighbouring of the world's surface between
in point of fact, be looked

can,

plane.)

In such

way,

we

might

upon as imagine

almost twoa

FINITENESS
dimensional
would three

OF

UNIVERSE
; the

161

picture the of
to

according dimensions. Geometry space


as

be,

universe Einstein,

real universe its counterpart in designates this kind of


to
a

curved

spherical pace,for it is analogous s

above against the idea of an infinitely extended universe had nothing to do with the problem of relativity in itself. There is another argument,
in favour of the idea of a finite universe, intimately connected which is most with the idea of oped relativity. It is as follows : The considerations develin Chapter however,

spherical surface.^ The reasons developed

possessed by a caused by the

is not according to whichinertia body in itself,but, like gravitation, is interaction of bodies, guided Einstein

XII,

in his task of establishing the equations of motion and the field equations. These comply with the general in Chapter XVII, principle of relativity formulated and

with

Mach's

demands

mentioned

the relativity of rotational motions. must analysis, however, shows that we interpret these
now

there concerning A mathematical


not

necessarily

completed equations, subsequently, as meaning that the inertia of a body is actually caused only by the interaction between it and the other masses There are many physicists who conof the universe. sider formulation of the new the mathematical theory correct, but who do not agree with the above-mentioned

conception of the nature of inertia. The theory would then be robbed of its most
"

profound

general theory of relativity has been repeatedly three-dimensional to, because spherical space of that be grasped by our as curved cannot space generally) well
The But

kind

objected (as

that

our

tion. imaginait is only fair to say that it is not Einstein's fault of imagination fails in this point. powet

162

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

conceptual

If it is to be in truth a completely nucleus. consistent theory of relativity, and not merely a mathe facts of the greatest matical description of astronomical be interpreted possible accuracy, the inertia of bodies must by it in
the

way

indicated.

Now

Einstein

is this interpretation that mathematically only possible if we assume universal space to be a closed " Hence if the radical relativistic world." spherical Mach-Einstein point of view be accepted, we shall have
showed
to beheve

the universe

to be unbounded,

but finite.

CONCLUDING

REMARKS

THE
the

purpose theory

connections

is to elucidate the of this book between ideas of the fundamental of

It wiU be useful, relativity. therefore, if we collect together in the form of a genealogical ideas discussed in detail table the genesis of the
in the text.

This has been

done

in the table

on

p. 167,

which hardly needs any further explanation has already been said. It is intended to map

after what
serve as a

of the regions of the special and general theory of relativity, for those who have lost their bearings in the mist of mathematical and geometrical difficulties. After faithfully following the discussions of this book the reader may throughout, judgefor himself as to the

value author appear

or

otherwise
too
a

were

of the theory of relativity. If the to express his own opinion, it might perhaps cause StiU, we and mistrust. exuberant words objective

shall add
with

few

which the theory has been more

concerning the criticisms of relativity, thanks to its reputatio than any other richly endowed
"

physical theory. The truth of the If critics take the point of view : to merit theory is far from being sufficiently proved its creator our alongside Galileo or Newton," ranking against it, unless it be that a ifit has nothing of ideas can be admirable even structure to do with the reality of things. nothing
can

be

said

163

164

GENERAL
there
are

THEORY
many These

OF
declare

RELATIVITY
the whole
to

But

who

be

logical nonsense.

the theory at all, or " logic." the concept of


"

people either do not understand they are not clear as to the limits of
It has been said, for instance ray of light possesses the same
:

The

statement

that

velocity c with reference to two systems moving rectilinearly and uniformly with respect to each other is logically wrong." In this case the critic,though understanding
what the theory of relativity is intended to of what belongs to the convey, is nevertheless unaware realm of logic. In point of fact, the statement quoted

has nothing at all to do with logic ; it merely ujKets That cannot the traditional ideas of space and time. be denied.
the theory of relativity critic reproaches being the most and mathematically confused with That is to be explained dif"cult theory ever set up. third A

layman generally has not much average to do with higher mathematics, and he is quite happy standing about it. If,in attempting to find the way to an underenof the theory of relativity, he becomes tangled

thus

The

in mathematical
at

difficultiesand is unable to judgethat these


the

problems, he is then surprised becomes baffled. Of course he


are

not

The other branch of mathematics. functions, etc., contain algebra, the theory of difficult than those chapter which is far more differential geometry
that form

greater than in any theory of numbers,

many

parts of

and absolute differential calculus matics the basis of Einstein's calculations. Mathe-

is verily no child's play I On the other hand, the theory of relativity is frequently overrated, as regards the extent of its importance. It supplies
us

with

new

view of the world

in respect of

SUPPLEMENTARY
geometry,
"

NOTES

165

physics, and perhaps also of philosophical But it has nothing to do with what we call science. World-conception in the human sense general
"

be interesting The Einstein may man of the word. from this point of view ; his theory, however, must not be mixed up with this.
of the theory is solely to approach the ideal of the rational description of physical processes as nearly be judgedat present, that as possible ; and as far as can aim purpose has been

The

fulfilled.

SUPPLEMENTARY
NOTE
PAGE

NOTES
TO 2

here used, and accordance with the method of treatment have already by the desire for brevity and simplicity, we guided ^ongside of each other, two statements ranged unhesitatingly the arouse perhaps criticism of philosophically may which feel the For those trained (and only for those) who minds. ideas involved, formulation we shall of the need of a stricter By following the the of note : motion supplementary add in the body a (in general, and not only above-mentioned the alteration we of its position, understand restricted sense) is only given by its distance of a body since the position and is in its essence a bodies, the concept from of motion other does not Thus the first of the above statements relative one. In
new of opinion ; it is an analytical expression express anything to the idea belonging a that already property characterises This significance of the in virtue of its definition. of motion has been the phoronomic "motion" (kinematic) called word But the idea of motion we can regard of motion. conception " " by the in that we in yet another motion understand way, the presence a of. which might condition, physical of a body be established ence referalso without circumstances certain under is in a state of instance, if a body For bodies. to other by the be recognised the existence of this state may rotation, forces, without of the occurrence consideration of centrifugal in Newtonian idea This of motion surroundings. -physical The is thus not of a relative one. of the nature mechanics has (with the above reference mentioned statement second there made) to the physical conception limitation of motion.

166

GENERAL

THEORY

OF

RELATIVITY

and is therefore not self-evident, but a statement of a physical fact. From half of this book the discussion it of the second be recognised that the tendency the theory of will of relativity is to weld the phoronomic and the physical conceptions of motion into one, in such a manner that we can only speak of a physical it also carries out a phoronomical state of motion of a body when motion

(i.". relative

to other

bodies).

NOTE

TO

PAGE

IIQ

We take into account, as that must previously emphasised, the results of the special theory of relativity can be applied only if very small world to a case of non-uniform motion, elements being We infer, therefore, are that a conconsidered. may traction individual but takes it is measuring-rods of place ; the basis of the special theory not possible, on of relativity, the circumference to draw the disc as a conclusions about of On the other hand, on the any whole. circle drawn concentric top disc will always a coincide with concentric corresponding disc ; the circumference of the top disc, for circle on the lower
instance, will permanently lower disc, i.e. one wiU

along the circumference of the the other But cover it is completely. figures which to regard two cover reasonable obviously each being equal. the transference as (Cf. other of measuring-rods, to the direction VII, p. Chap. of motion. situated normally 53.) it is thus quite reasonable In this sense to say that each single but that the circumference contracts, measuring-rod of the disc does not contract. a whole as
run

NOTE

TO

PAGE

147

fulfilling the requirements in Chapter of Mach mentioned XV, Einstein's a it as meory represents reconciliation, Ptolemaic Copemican the were, and world-systems (the of by Mach, be the most latter, as pointed out will always useful We for all practical can one only say that the earth By

purposes).

a out of fixed stars carry rotatory motion and the firmament is no in maintaining there point relatively to each other, and " in truth that of the two is in motion, only one and the other at rest. from believed derived It was that one the special argument had been found, indicated that only theory which of relativity be correct, viz. " the can one assertions of the above-mentioned the firmament As and rotates of fixed stars is at rest." earth XI, it necessarily follows from in Chapter the special explained body can move a theory material of relativity that no with
"

SUPPLEMENTARY

NOTES

167

The opponents greater velocity than that of light. of the general follows : If the earth theory thus as were argue of relativity at rest, and the firmament of fixed stars were revolving round it, even fixed stars would the nearest attain a velocity greater distant be revolving than that ones must very of light, and c, in order that with velocities many million times greater than in a the earth their enormous cover they may orbits round To this we single day. reply that the theory of relativity deals to the special theory According only with relative motions. of for instance, that at it is quite out of the question, relativity body the solar system could traverse any time an outside cosmic that of light. On the other hand, than a greater with velocity from imagining us a system of reference nothing prevents to north moving, say, in the direction of the earth's axis from km. The a 400,000 per second. south earth of with velocity have bodies then velocities, relative to would and all heavenly
be than the which would greater of reference, the above-mentioned light, without thereby violating velocity of be no law of the special theory of relativity ^for there would These c. than only with appear relative velocities greater fictitious co-ordinate axes to the our of peculiarly reference The case of a co-ordinate system system of reference. chosen the firmament the earth of fixed stars rest in it and at with Here, too, we have rotating relatively to it is quite analogous. distances of the fixed The c. no relative velocities greater than from the centre as from as of the earth other, well each stars the globe, do not or alter with velocities other point of any higher than c ; these only relatively velocities appear greater is fixed to the to the axes system which of that co-ordinate that is no more i.e. purely and structures conceptual earth the example a of relativity than violation of the special theory this system
" " "

aforementioned.
NOTE TO

PAGE

152

have been raised by astronomers doubts concerning recently has been discovered error a numerical this result, because Newcomb astronomer in the fundamental of the American work Inner Planets, whence the Four this the orbital Elements of on It is possible, therefore, that the taken. been had statement between the value coincidence of the striking wonderfully by Einstein Mercury the out and worked of motion perihelion by in the an error was caused accidentally value observed Be it may, by Newcomb. that as of observations reduction to agree seem Einstein's of the orbit of Mercury calculations than those performed better with current according observations A full explanation law. of this question wiU to the Newtonian on the Elements be possible, after Newcomb's great work only Inner Planets has been revised. of the Four

Quite

S
o

1
s

.s "S.-"'-

5"

(""0
"Sjt^

I
'5 S
a

Bi P"

"6i"l

"5S o
s

"

'S

"""1
"

5.1

I Si
H

"l

/
PKINTED
BV

MOKKISON

AND

GIBB

LTD.,

EDINBURGH

SELECTION

FROM

Messrs.

Methuen's

PUBLICATIONS
This Catalogue contains only a selection ol the more important books A complete catalogue of their published by Messrs. Methuen. publications
may be obtained
on

application.

OF ART Clntton-Broek (AJ, WHAT (W. W.). THE IS THE KINCCRICKET. Cr. Sto. 6s. net. DOM OF HEAVEN? Fitth Edition. Bain W.)" Fcap. 8110, ss. net. A Digit of thb Hoom : A Hindoo Love ESSAYS ON ART. Second Edition. Fcab. Story, Thb Dsscbht Sum : A 8"o, is. na. of thb Cycle of Birth. A Hbifer of thb Daww. ESSAYS ONBOOKS, Third Edition. In the Great God's Hair. A Deaughx Fcap. Sun, 6s, net. Bi,ue. OF the Ah Essence Dusk. MORE of the ESSAYS ON BOOKS, Fcap. Soo. Ah Incarnation Show. A Mihb of the 6s. net. OP Faults. The Ashes SHAKESPEARE'S Gon. of a HAMLET, Fcap. Svo. Bubbles of the Foam, A Stbup op the SS. net. Bees, The Liveky Eve, stance Conrad The Subof MIRROR OF (Jaseph).THE of a Drbau, All Fcap. 8vo. 55, THE SEA ; Memories and Impresaioiis, Echo Spheres. of the Wide Fourth Edition. Fcap. Svo. 6s. net. net. Ah Demy, izs. 6d. net. Drever (James). THE PSYCHOLOGY OF Baker IUusEVERYDAY LIFE. Cr. Svo. (C. H. CoUIbs). CROME, 6s, net. THE PSYCHOLOGY trated. Quarto. "5 5J, net. OF INDUSTRY, BaUonr fSir Grsbsm). THE LIFE OF Cr. 8ra, ss. net. ROBERT TieenLOUIS STEVENSON, Einstein THE (A.). RELATIVITY: In one Cr, "00. Volume, Uetk Edition. SPECIAL AND THE GENERAL Buchram^ ys. 6d. net. THEORY, Translated by Robert W, OF DRAWINGS. Bateraan (H. H.). A BOOK Lawsoh, Seventh Edition. Cr.Svo. ss.net. Royal ON RELATIVITY, Fifth Edition. Two ^to. SIDELIGHTS 6d. net. Lectures by Albbkx 10s. Eihstbih, Cr. Svo, SUBURBIA. Demar \to. 6s. net. 3$. 6d. net. HISTORY Other Boohs on the Elnflteln heory, BeU (Mary \. M.). A SHORT T PAPACY. Demy 8110. 21J. m*, SPACE" OF THE TIME" MATTER, By Herh ahh Weyl, Demy 800, sis, net. BeUoe (H.)" EINSTEIN the Sea, 6s. Pakis, 8s, 6i. net. Hills ahd : His Work TflE SEARCHER Kindred jects, SubOn Noisihg and BXPLAINBD IH DIALOGUES ElNSTEIN. WITH net. 6s. net. Oh Everythihg, 6s. net. By Alexander Moszkowski, Demy 6s. net. First and Last, 6s. Svo, 12s, 6d. net. Oh Somethihg, Other, 6s. AN INTRODUCTION This and That and the TO THE THEORY na. Antoinette, OF RELATIVITY. By Lyndon Boltoh. net. Maris iSs. net. TENNIS Cr. Sffo. 5s. net. Blaekmore (8. FoweU), LAWN Demy 8"o. RELATIVITY GRAVITATION, lUustrated, UP-TO-DATE, AND By Various Writers. Edited by J, Malcolm I2S. 6(2.net. Bird, MATION, TRANSFORCr. Sua. ys. 6d. net. Carpenter (Q. H.). INSECT RELATIVITY Demy Svo. lis. 6d. net. AND THE UNIVERSE. By Dr. Harry Schmidt, D Second Edition. Chandler (Arthur),.D., late Lord Bishop of Cr, Bvo. ss. net. Bloemfontein THE OF EINSTEIN'S IDEAS THEORY, Ara C("LI : An Essay inMyatical Theology, Experience, Cr. Svo. ss. net. By J, H. Thirrihg, ss. net. 5S. net. Faith and By Herbert Passing Moment, 6s. RELATIVITY FOR ALL, The Cult of the union, ReDingle, English Church and Fcap. Svo. as. net. net. The Scala Mundi, Evans (Joan). ENGLISH JEWELLERY. 45. 6d. net. 5s. net. Royal ito. "z zas. 6d. net. Chesterton (G,K.)" All White Horse, Fylemao AND NEYS. CHIMof the The Ballad (Rose). FAIRIES Trenendous Ttaellth Edition. Cohsidered, Things Fcap. Svo. A Discursions, Alarms ahd Trifles, 35. 6d. net. THE Uses of GREEN. Sixth Men, The FAIRY Edition. of Miscellany All Fcap. Svo. 3s. 6d. net. Diversity. Ecap. "vo. 6s. net. FAIRY FLUTE. Second Edition. Soho. Water, ahd WiHB, Fcap. Bvo. THE Fcap.Svo. 3s. 6d. net. IS. 6d. net.

Armstrong

JF.

"

Messrs.

Methuen's

Publications
SEVEN
Svo.

GIbUna IN (H. "e B.). INDUSTRY ENGLAND : HISTORICAL OUTLINES. With Maps Tfnth Edition. and Plans. Demy Svo. 125. 6d. net. THE HISTORY OF INDUSTRIAL With 5 Maps ENGLAND. and a Plan. Cr. Svo. 55. Twenty-seventh Edition. Gibbon (Edward). THE DECLINE AND FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. Edited, with Notes, Appendices, and Maps, by J. B. Bury. Seven Volumes. Demy 8p0. Illustrated. Eacit 6d, 12s. net. Also in Seven Volumes. UniUustrated. Cr. Svo. Each Js. 6d. net. Glover (T. K.)" The Cohflict of Religiohs in the Early Rohan Eufirb, zo$. 6d. net. Poets and Puritans, ios. 6d. net. Froh Pericles Philip, ids. 6d. net. Virgil, 105. 6d. TO Christian Tradition and its net. The Verification (The Angus Lecture for 65. net. igi2}, Orahame WIND IN (Kenneth). THE THE WILLOWS. E Tuiellthdition. Cr. Svo. 7s. 6d. net. ANCIENT Hall (H. R.). THE HISTORY OF THE NEAR EAST FROM THE EARLIEST TO THE BATTLE TIMES OF SALAMIS. Illustrated. Fifth Edition. Demy Svo. 21s. net. SCARLET Hawthorne THE (Nathaniel). LETTER. With Illustrations in 31 Colour, by Hugh Thouson. Wide Royal Svo. 315. 6d. net. OF Holdsworth (W. S.). A HISTORY Seven Volumes. Demy ENGLISH LAW. Soo. Each 25s. net. MYSTICISM. Inge (W. H.). CHRISTIAN Lectures of 1899.) Fi/th (The Hampton Cr. Soo. 7s. 6d. net. Edition. OP ENGLISH Jenks (B.). AN OUTLINE GOVERNMENT. LOCAL FifthEdition, revised. Cr. Svo. 5s. net. OF ENGLISH LAW A SHORT HISTORY : From Earliest Tiues to the End the Edition, Second Year of the igii. Svo. 125. 6d. net. revised. Demy TIONS JnUan (Lady) ol Horwleh. REVELALOVE. Edited by OF DIVINE Grace Warrack. Seventh Edition. Cr.

THE Cr.
net.

Fcap.
Also a Square

SEAS. Thousand. iJTJ* Buckram, 7s. 6d. net. Also Svo. Cloth, 6s. net ; leather, is. 6d.

Service Edition. Tao Volumes. Each 35. net. THE FIVE NATIONS. 126th Thousand. Cr. Svo. Buchram, 7s. 6d. net. Also Fcap. Svo. Cloth, 6s. tut 1 leather,71. 6d.

Fcap. Svo.

net.

Service Edition. Two Volumes. Each 3s, net. DEPARTMENTAL DITTIES. I02ni Thousand. Cr. Svo. Buckram, 7s. 6d. Also Fcap. Svo. Cloth, 6s. net;' net. leather, 7s. 6d. net. Also a Service Edition. Volumes. Two Square Fcap. Svo. Each 31. net. THE YEARS BETWEEN, gsth Thousand. Cr. Svo. Buckram, 7s. 6d. net. Fcap. Svo. Cloth, 6s, net ; leather,7s. 6d. net. Also a Service Edition. Two Volumes. Square Fcap. Svo. Each 3s. net. HYMN BEFORE ACTION. lUuminated. Fcap. 4to. IS. 6d. net.

Also a Square

Fcap, Svo,

RECESSIONAL.
is.

Illuminated. Fcap. 4I0. 6d. net. TWENTY POEMS FROM RUDYARD KIFLINS. Fcap. Svo. 313M Thousand.
is.

net.

Knox (B. V. PARODIES by George


net.

G.). ('Evoe* of
REGAINED. Morrow.

Punch.)

Illustrated Fcap. Svo, 5s.

PLETE COMMary). THE WORKS. Edited by E. V. Lucas. A New and Revised Edition in Six Volumes, With Frontispieces. Fcap. Svo. Each 6s. net. The volumes are : I. Miscellaneous Prosb. 11. Elia and Last Essay the Elxa. of hi. Books Children, for iv. Plays PoBva. and V. and VI. Letters. ESSAYS THE OF ELIA. With an Introduction by E. V. Lucas, and 28 Illustrations by A. Garth Jones. Fcap. Svo. Ss. net. Lankester (Sir FROM AN Ray). SCIENCE Svo. 55. net, CHAIR. EASY Illustrated. Thirteenth Edited, with Introduction Keats (John). POEMS. Edition. Cr. Svo. 7s. 6d. net. and Notes, by E. ds SelinFROM AN EASY CHAIR. gravure. SCIENCE With Frontispiece in Photocourt. a Second Series. Illustrated. Third Edition. Fourth Edition. Demy Svo. Cr. Svo. ys. 6d. net. I2S. 6d. net. DIVERSIONS OF A NATURALIST. SCIENCE OF Kldd (Benjamin). THE Illustrated. Third Edition. Cr. Svo. Edition. Cr.Svo. ys.6d.net. POWER. Ninth 7s. 6d. net. DemySvo. 8s. 6d.net. SOCIAL EVOLUTION. SECRETS OF EARTH AND SEA. Cr. NATURE. WITH A PHILOSOPHER Bvo. Ss. 6d. net. Cr. Svo. 7s. 6d. net. Secona Edition. Lodge Kipling THE (Sir OUver). MAN AN" (Rudyard). BARRACK-ROOM Cr. Svo UNIVERSE : A Study of the Influence BALLADS. 215th Thousand. Advance OF the Scientific in Buckram, ledge Know7s. 6d, net. Also Fcap. Svo. UPON Understanding our Cloth, 6s. net ; leather, 7s. 6d. net. of 'J'co Volumes, Christianity. Ninth Edition. Cr. Svo. Also a Service Edition. Square Fcap. Svo. Each 3s, net. 7s. 6d. net.
"

Lamb

(OharlM and

"

Messrs.
THE SURVIVAL Unekcochizsd

BIethuen's

Pubucations
Guest, Wrack Miracle
Act,

OF MAN : A Stodt m Huhah Faculty. Settnth Edition. Cr. tvo. fs. 6d. net. MODERN PROBLEMS. Cr. Sua. js. 6d. net. RAYMOND; Lifi oit Death. amd lUiutrated. Twelfth Eiition. Demy 6vo. los. 6d. na. hating (F. H.). ATOMIC THEORIES. Demy Sm. I2s. 6i. net. Lneu (E.V.)" The Life of Chaklbs Lahb, a vols.,sis. im Holland, ios. 6d. net. A Wahderee London, in xos. 6d. net. A Wanderer Revisited, ios. 6d. net. A net. London Wanderer in Paris, ios. 6i. net and 6:. in Florence, ios. 6d. net. A Wanderer in Venice, ios. 6d. net. net. A Wanderer The Open Road: A Little Book for Wayfaieis, 6s. 6(/. net. The Friendly Town: A Little Book for the Urbane, 65. net. Fireside Sunshine, and 6s. net. Character Cohedy, 6s. net. and The Gentlest Art : A Ciioice of Letters by Entertaining Hands, 6s. 6d. net. The Second Post, 65. net. Her Infinite Vabiety A Feminine Portrait Gallery, : 6s.net, Good Cohpan y ; A Rally of Men, 6s. net. One Day 6s. net. and .Another, Old Lamps for New, 6s. net. Loiterer's 6s. net. Cloud Harvest, Silver, 6s. and of Baghdad, and A Boswell other net. Essays, Eagle and 6s. net. *Twixt Dove, 6s. net. The Phantom Journal, 6s. EsSAYS AND DIVERSIONS, AND OTHER Specially Selected : A Choice of net. Essays, 7s. 6d. net. Urbanities. trated Illusby G. L. Stampa, 7s. 6d. net. The School An Anecdotal British : Guid" to the British Painters and Painting"=.in the National Gallery, 6s. net. Roving West : Notes Roving East and gatheied in India, Japan, and America. Austin Abbey, R.A. 55. net. Edvih Delft, of Verkeee 2 vols. "6 6s. net. 6d. net. IOS. INGS. PAINTHeIdrBm(D.S.). REMBRANDT'S Wide Royal Svo. "z 2s. net. OF ANTHOLOGY Methnen (A.). AN Introduction With VERSE. MODERN Edition. Seventh Lynd. Robert by Pcap. Svo. 6s. net. Thin paper, leather, Js. 6d. net. TION INTRODUCMcDongaU (WllUam). AN PSYCHOLOGY. SOCIAL TO Cr. Svo. 8s. 6d. net. Seventeenth Edition. AND BODY Defence Svo. Demy
of a and A History MIND: Animism. Fifth Edition. I2S. 6d. net.

6s. net.
op the

Poems, Storm,
:

Burgomaster of Stxlehonde Play in Three Acts, 5s. : A The Betrothal "". ; or. The Blue Bird Chooses, 6s. net. Mountain Paths, 6s. net. The Story of Tyliyl, ais. rut. Hllne (A. A.)" Not that it Matters. Veap. Svo. 6s. If I May. Fcap. Svo. 6s. net. net. HeTfll (Bslph). MAYFAIR AND MONTMARTRE. Demy Svo. 15s. net. AND Horwood (GUbert). EURIPIDES SHAW Essays. Cr. Svo. other : With Js. 6d. net. AND Osborn (B. B.). LITERATURE LIFE. Cr. Svo. ys. 6d. net. Oxenham (John) Bees Amber Little Book in of ; A Thoughtful Verse. Pott Svo. SmaU Well; All's Stiff Boards, zs. net. A Collection of War Poems. The King's High The Splendid. Way. Vision The Fiery Cross. High Altars : The Record of a Visit to the Battlefields of France Hearts geous. Couraand Flanders. All Clear ! AU SmaU Pott Svo. Paper, is. 3d. net ; cloth boards, 2s. Dawn. of the Gentlemen net. Winds The King, 2s. net.
" "

of St. Anthony 3s. 6d. net. The

6s. net. The A Play in One

5s. ntt.

The

NATIONAL DECAY.

VreLFARE Cr. Svo.


"

AND
6s. net.

NATIONAL

Haeterlinek (Hanriee) The Blue Bird : A Fairy Play in Six Acts Play in Magdalene : A 6s. riel. Mary
Three Acts, 5S. nrt. Death, 6(. net. The Odr Eternity,
3s. 6d. net.

A OF Petrie (W. H. Flinders). HISTORY Illustrated. Six Volumes. Cr. EGYPT. Svo. Each gs. net. XVIth Vol. 1st to the I. From the Dynasty. 6d. net.) Ninth Edition. (los. XVIIIth II. The and XVllTH %'OL. Dynasties. Sixth Edition. Dynasties. Vol. hi. XXXth XIXth to Second Edition. Ptolemaic Vol. Egypt ihe IV. undkb Dynasty. J.P.Mahaffy. Second Edition. Roman Rule. Vol. V. Egypt under Second Edition. J. G. Milne. Middle Ages. Vol. VI. Egypt in the Second Edition. Lane Poole. Stanley TELL THE FROM AND EGYPT, SYRIA Cr. Svo. EL AMARNA LETTERS. 5s. na. Translated from the TALES. EGYPTIAN to First Series, ivth Papyri. xiith Third Edition. Dynasty. Illustrated. Cr. Svo. 5s. net. Translated from the TALES. EGYPTIAN Second Series, xvnith to xixth Papyri. Edition. Illustrated. Second Dynasty. Cr. Svo. 5S. net. PolUtt (Arthur W.). THE ENJOYMENT Second Edition. Cr. Svo. MUSIC. OF 5S. net. OF HISTORY Price (L. L.). A SHORT IN ENGLAND ECONOMY POLITICAL TO ARNOLD SMITH FROM ADAM Eleventh Edition. Cr. Svo TOYNBEE. 55. net.

Unknown

Messrs. Methuen's
"

Publications

LIFE. AND Belsni (Edmniil) Toner (W. J.). MUSIC ToHHY Cr. Svo. ys. 6d. net. Tohuy Smith's Ahihau. Smith's Other Animals. Tommy Smith A Underbill (E?elyn). MYSTICISM. Smith agaih Zoo. Tommy AT at THE Study in the Nature and Development of Zoo. THE Each 2S. gd. Jack's Iksects, Ninth Spiritual Consciousness. Man's Iksbcts, $$, 6d. 3S. 6d. Jack's Other Svo. is". net. Demy Edition. With Shelley (Peroy ByHhs). POEMS. GOLF. TO PLAY Tardon (Harry). HOW an Introduction by A. Cluttok-Brock Edition. Cr. 8". Illustrated. Fifieenth Notes by C. D. Lococe. Two and Ss. 6d. net. Volumes. Demy 8vo. "i is. net. TESTAMENT Wade Smith THE OF WEALTH (O. W.). NEW (Adam). Demy Svo. i8". net. HISTORY. Edited by Edwih Cahnah. NATIONS. Two Volumes. Third Edition. Demy A BOOK Waterhense (Elliabeth). LITTLE Bvo. "i zos. net. DEATH. OF LIFE AND Twenty-first AT Smith (S. 0. Kalnei). LOOKING Edition. Small Pott Svo. it. 6d. net. Uustrated. PICTORES. Second tion. Edi8vo. 6s. net. Fc"p. OF SHORT HISTORY Weill ".). A DRAMA. ELIZABETHAN SpSM (Janet). ROME. Eighteenth Edition. With 3 Cr. Zvo. 65. net. Maps. Cr. Svo. 5". BtevenBon JR. L.J. THE LETTERS OF OF OSCAR THE WORKS WUde (Oseat). LOUIS STEVENSON. ROBERT Edited Fcap. Svo. Each 6s. 6d. net. by Six SiDHEY COLVIN. A New RearrangedWILDE. Savile's Crime and Arthur I. Lord Edition in four volumes. Fourth Mr. W. H. 11. The Portrait or thb Edition. Svo. Each 6s. net. Fcap. Padua, hi. Poems, iv. Duchess of Snrtees (R. 8.) Fan. Lady Windermere's v. A Woman Crom, Handley 7s. 6d. net. Mr. band, No Importance, vi. An Ideal HusOF Sporting Sponge's Tour, 71. 6d, net. Importance Being op vii. The Ask Mamma ; or. The Richest Commoner of granates. PomeEarnest, A House viii. in England, ?s. 6d. net. Jorrocks's Prox. De IX. Intentions, Jadmts and Jollities, 6s. net. Mr. says. EsPrison Letters, xi. fundis and Hounds, Facey Romford's 7s. 6d. net. Florentine Salohb, a XII. Hawbuck Grange The Sporting ; or. Courtisahb. Tragedy, and La Saints Scott, Esq., 6s. Adventures of Thomas Pall Mall. A Critic in xiv. XIII. Ringlets ? 7". 6d. net. net. Plain or op Prose Oscar Wildb. Selected Hall, 75. 6d. Het. Hillingdon Decoration. Art and XV. OF LAWN ART Tllden (W. T.). THE OF POMEGRANATES. lUnsA HOUSE Illustrated. Fourth Edition. TENNIS. trated. Cr. ^to. 315. net. Cr. Bvo. 6s. net. STRENGTH OF BOOK IRISH Teats (W. B.). A Tlleston (Mary W.). DAILY NEEDS. DAILY Twenty-seventh Fourth Edition. Cr. Svo. js. FOR VERSE. Edition. Medium i6mo. 3s. 6d. net. net.
"

Part

II.
"

^A

Selection

of

Series

The Antiquary's Books


Demy Svo.
los.

6d. net each volume Illustrations


Hanosial Manor Records. Thb and Medieval Hospitals England, of Old English Instruments Music. of Libraries. Old English Old Servicb Books of the English Church. Parish LiFB MsDIiBVAL IN ENGLAND. ThB Parish Registers England. mains Reof Prehistoric of Age in England. the Thb Roman Era Britain. in Romano-British Buildings works. Earthand Forests land. Engof The Royal The Schools Engof Medi.eval Shrines British Saiho. UNO. of

With

Numerous

Paihtrd England. Glass in Amciekt False Antiquities. and Archaologv Thb Brasses The Bells op England. Walled Thb Castles and OF England. England. Celtic Art in of Towns Christian Times. wardens' ChurchPagan and Domesday Accounts. The Furniture. English Church Inquest. Monastic Costume. English English Folk-Lore Seals. English Life. as Science. The Gilds and an Historical The London. Hermits of Companies ENGLAND. THB AMCBOBITES OF AHD

Messrs.
The

Methuen's Arden
Editor. Svo.

Publications

Shakespeare
R.

General
Demy An

H.

CASE

6s. net each volume

in Single Plays ; each edited with a full Introduction, edition of Shakespeare Textual Notes, and a Commentary the foot of the page. at

Classics ol Art
Edited by Dr.
With
The Art
of

J. H.

W.

LAING

numerous

Illustrations. Wide Royal Svo


net. Raphael. 15s. nst, Rbubrahdt's Etchings, 31s. 6d. net. Rembrandt's Paintingg, 42s. twi. Tintoretto, i6s.net. Titian, i6s. net. Turner's Sketches and Drawings, 15s. ne$, Vblasqubz. 15s. net.
'

Greeks, 21s. net. The Romans, i6j. net. Chardih. 15s. net. Donatsllo, i6s. net. Gbqrgb RoHNEY.xss. Ghiklahdaio, 15s.net. net, Lawsbmcb, 25*. net. Hichelangelo. 151.
of
the

Art

the

The
Thb

Complete

Series
Svo
The

Fully Illustrated. Demy


AiRUAH, Comflbte 165. net. Thb Auateur Boxer, 10s, 6d. net. Complete baller, FootAssociation The Complete 6d, net. The Cohflbtb 10s. Athletic Trainer, 6d. net. The ios. Billiard Flayer, 6d. ids. Complete Cook, ids. Cohplete 6d. net. net. The Foxhunter, Thb Completb 16s. net. Golfer, 6d. net. 12s. Thb Complete Hockey-Flayer, ids. 6d. The Complete Complbtb Horseman, The 15s. net. Jujitsuah. Cr. Svo. net. Thb Complbtb

Complbtb Lawn Tennis 55. net. Player, Complete 6d. net. The 12s. Motorist, Complete ios. 6d. net. The Mountaineer, 16s. net, Thb Complete The Oarsman, Cpmplete 155, net. Photographer,i2s. 6d. net. The Complete Footballer, New land Zeaoh Rugby the System, 6d. net. The plete Com12*. Shot, Complete 165. net. The Swimmer, 6d. net. Thb Complete ios. Yachtsman, i8s. net.

The
With
numerous

Connoisseur's Library
"1
lis.

Illustrations. Wide Royal Svo.


Books.
and

6d. net each volume


Forcblaim.

Coloured English Enamels. European Goldsmiths' Glass. Illuminated Work.

Etchings. Fine Books. Silversmiths' Manuscripts.

Ivories.
Miniatures.

Jewellery.
Sculpture.

Mezzotints. Sbals.

Wood

Handbooks
Demy
Incarnation, of the 15s. The Doctrine Early Christian of History net. A to Doctrine, i6i. net. Ihtroductioh 6d. net. 125. Religion, of History the History of thb to Introduction Am

of Theology
Svo
THB
of 12s.

the

Crbbds, Religion bd. net. Church

125.
in

6A. net. The Philosophy England America^ and Thb XXXIX Articles of Ehclahd, of 155. net.

Health Series Fcap. Svo, 2s. 6d. net


The Baby.
The The Care of the Body. Eyes of our The Teeth. Care of the Middlkthe for Health Children. The of a Woman. The Health Agbd. Live to Skin, How the of Hbalth Long. Cold.
and

The

The pREVBif tion of thb Cohhom Throat Staying Plague. the Tuberculosis. Ear Troubles. Health Child, a". net. of vhe

Messrs.
The
Handy

Methuen's

Publications

Library of Devotion
Books, well edited Notes (where necessary)

Editions of the great Devotional Introductions and

With Small

Pott 8vo, cloth, 35. net and

3s. 6d. net

Little Boolis
With many Each

on i6mo.

Art
5s. net each volume 30 to 40

Illustrations. Demy
zoo
a

volume consists of about Illustrations, including

pages, and contains from Frontispiece in Photogravure

Albrecht DOrer. The Arts of Japan. Bookplates. BurhbBotticelli. JoHES. Cellini. Christian Symbolism. Art. Christ Claude. Constable. in Corot. Early English Water-Colour. George Enamels. Frederic Leigbton. and RoMHEV. Greek Art. Grbuze

Holbein. Boucher. Illuminated Manuscripts. Jewellery. John HofpMillet. Sir Joshua Reynolds. NER. Art. in Miniatures. Our Lady Turner. Vahdycx. Raphael. Rodih. Watts.

The Little Guides


With

many

Illustrations by E. H. New

and other artists,and from

photographs
Small Pott 8wo. Guides to the English and Welsh
^s. net to js. 6d. net.

Counties, and

some

well-known

districts

form; a The main features of these Guides are (i) handy and charming by well-known illustrations from photographs ; (3)good artists and (2) an plans and maps ; (4) adequate but compact presentation of everything that is interesting in the natural features, history, archaeology, and architecture of the town or districttreated.

The
Edited by W. Pott i6mo.

Little Quarto Shakespeare

CRAIG.

With Introductions and Notes

Leather, priceis. gd. net each volume 40 Volumes. Cloth, IS. 6d. net.

Plays Fcap. 8vo.


Milestones. Arnold Bennett and Edward Tenth Edition. Knoblock. ing ActAn, Oscar Wilde. Ideal Husband, Edition. tion. Fourth EdiKnoblock. Kismet. Edward The Great Advehtuse.

3s. td. net


A Play in Four Acts. Melchior Typhoon. Lengyel. English Version by Laurence Irving. Second Edition. Ware Case, The. George Pleydell. Terry. Post. General J. E. Harold Second Edition. Thiri The Honeymoon. Arnold Bennett.

Arnold Bennett.

Edition. Fijth

Edition.

Messrs.

Methuen's

Publications

Sports Series Illustrated. Fcap. 81/0


All About Flying, 3s. net. Alpinb Ski-ing at All Heights and Seasons, Ski-ing, 5s. net. 55. net. Cross Country Golf Do's Dont's, and 2s. td. net. Quick Cuts to Good Golf, 25. td. net. Golf, as. "d. net. Driving. Inspired Approaching, Putting, Golf 25, net. Clubs How Use Thbh, and 2s. net. to Thb Occasional Secret Golf for of Tennis, 35. net. Flayers, Lawn 25. net. Dont's, as. net. Lawn Tennis Do's and PLAVE-ts^ Lawn Young Tennis for Club for Tennis 25. 6d. net. Lawn Players, Tennis for Lawn 2s. 6d. net. Match Players, 25. 6d. net. Hockey, ing, Swih, 2s. net. Puntto 4s. net. How 3s. nU. 35. 6d. net. Skating, Wrestling, 2s. net.

The

Westminster
Demy

Commentaries
LOCK
8vo
x6s.ntt. Job, 8". 6d. net. Tsa Pastoral Epistles, 85. 6d. net. The Philippiahs, 85. 6d. net. St. Jahes, 8s. 6d. net. Si, Matthews, 155. net. St. Luke, 135. net.

General
Taa
Acts

Editor, WALTER

Apostles, 121. 6i. net. of *bx 85, 85. td. net. I Corinthians, 6d. net. Exodus, 15s. net. Ezbkixl, 225. 6d. net. Genesis, 165. net. Hebrews, 81. 6d. net. Isaiah, i6t. net. Jereuiah,
Amos,

Metliuen's Two-Shilling Library


Cheap
Editions of many Popular Fcap. 8vo Books

Part
"

III.
"

^A

Selection

of

Works

of

Fiction

BniuU (Arnold) Lessways, 8". net. Hilda Clayhanger, The Card. Twain. 8f. 6d. net. These Story of A Five Towns : Regent The Price of The in London. Adventure A Man Alive. proh Buried Love. Five of the The Matador North. the God hath Wkoh Joined. A Towns. He. Prohack. Great Man : A Frolic. All 75. 6d. net. (GeorgeA.)" Birmingham Party. Search The Gold. Spanish Up, Lalagk's Lovers. *The Bad Times. Lawyer. All Lost The Rebels. THE 75. 6d. net. Inisheenv, 8s. 6d. net.

Bnrrouglis (EdgarHice)" The 6s. net. Apes, the of Tarzah 65. net. The Beasts of Taezan, Return 6s. net. The Son of Tarzan, of Tarzan, 65. net. Jungle Tales of Tarzan, 65.
^ ^
"

Opar, of 7s. 6d. net. 65. net. The Gods of Mars, A Princess of Warlord The 65. net. Mars, of Mars, 6s. net. Thuvia, Maid of Mars, net. 65 net. Tarzan the Terrible, 25. 6ii. out withMan 65. net. The Mucker, The 6s. net. a Soul,
and net. Tarzan the 6s. net. Tarzan the

Jewels

Corelll(Marie)" A Romance op Two Worlds, 75. 6d. net. gotten, Vendetta: Story of One Foror, The A Norwegian 85. net. Thelha ; Princess, 85. 6(2.net. Ardath : The Story of a Dead Self, 7s. 6d. net. The Soul of LiLiTH, 75. 6d. net. Wormwood : A Drama : A Dream of of Paris, 85. net. Barabbas the World's Tragedy, 8s. net. The Sorrows MasterSatan, of 7s. 6d. net. The Power: Christian, 8s. 6d. net. Temporal A Study in Supremacy, 6s. net. God's Good Man : A Simple Love Story, 85. 6ii. The Tragedy Holy Orders : net. of a Quiet Life, 8s. 6d. net. The Mighty Atom, 7s. 6d. net. Boy : A Sketch, 75. 6d. net. Cameos, 6s. net. The Life Everlasting, 85. 6d. net. The Love of Long Ago, and Other Stories,' 8s. 6d. net. Innocent, Power: Secret A The 75. 6d. net. Romance of the Time, 7s. 6d. net.

Untamed,

HIchens (Rohert)
"

Conrad (Joseph)
"

A Set Island Secret

ho.

05

Six, 7s. 6d. net. Victory -.An The Cr. ivo. 95. net. Tale. A Simple Tale. Cr. Svo. : Agent Cr. Eyes. Western net. Under Cr. ivo. gt. net. Chance. gs. net
of

Tongues Conscience, of 7s. 6A. net, Felix : Three Years in a Life, 7s. 6d. net. Fan, 7s. 6rf. net. The Woman with the 85. 6d. net. The Allah, Garden of 85. 6d. net. The Call of Blood, the Threshold, The Dweller on 7s. 6d, the of Ambition, 7s. 6d. net. net. The Way In ihe Wilderness, 7s. 6d. net.

Messrs.
Hope
A

Methuen's

Publications
(Jobn)
"

(Antbonr)
"

Air. A Man Mark. ov Simon Dale. King's Thb Mirror. The Dolly Dialogues. Mrs. Maxon Protests. A Young Man's Year. Beaukaroy Hohb Wars. from vbb All 7s. 6d. net.
oy

Change

Oxenbam Profit

Thb Song of Hyacinth, Loss. and Other Stories. The Coil of Carhb. The Quest of the Golden Rose. Mary All-Alohb. All 7s. 6d. net,
and

Jacobs (W. W.)" Many Cargoes,

Farkei Mrs.
of

(OUbert)"
'

St. net. Sea Urchins, A Master or 5s. net and 3$. 6d. net. Craft, 6s. net. Light Freights, 5s. net. The Skipper's Wooing, 5s. net. At SunwicH Port, 5s. net. Dialstonb Lane, 5s. net. Odd Craft, 5s. net. The Lady OF THE Barge, 5s. 5s. net. Saltbaveh, Knots, 5s. net. Short net. Sailors' Cruises, 6s. net. Ntnth

Translation Falchion. The Savage. When Valmond came PoNTiAC : The Story, -^f a Lost TO Napoleon. Am of ADVBNTtjRE the " North : The Last Adventures of Pretty Pierre.' The Seats of the Mighty, Thb Battle Strong ; op the A Romance Kingdoms. Thb Trail of the oi Two Sword, Northern Lights. All 71. 6i. net.
a

London (Jaok"" WHITE FANG. Edition. Cr. 8vo. ys. 6d. net.
"

Lucas (E. V.) Listener's Lure : An Oblique Narration, 6s. net. Over Bemerton's An Basy: going Chronicle, 6s. net. Mr. Inglesidb, 6s. net. London Lavender, 65. net. The Vbrhilioh Landmarks, 65. net. Box, 6s. net. Vbrsha Midst, ih the Rose, 6s. net. 85. 6d. net. Rose and

Pblllpotti(lien)" Mist. Children Thb River. of the Dehbtbr's Daughter. The Huuan Boy and the Wab. All 7s. 6d. net,
Robmer (Sax)" The Orchard Tales of Secret Egypt. Scorpion. Thb Golden OF Tears. AU Devil The Doctor, 7s, 6d, net. Dr, Ft^;MANCHU. The Mystery of The Yellow Claw. All 3s. 6d, net,
and Houses. Swlnnerton (F.) Shops The Happy Family. Septehber. On Coquette. The Chaste Thb Staircase. The Merry Wife. All 7s. 6d. net. Thb Casehbht, The Young Heart, AU 6s. net. Idea.

HoKenna (Stepben) Between SoNiA : Two Worlds, 8s. net. NiNETY^Six Hours' Leave, 7s. 6d. net. The Sixth Sense, 6s. net, Midas " Son,
"

8s. net.

Halet (Lucas) The History Calmadv of Sir Richard : A Romance. los. Carissiha. net. The The Dbadhau Gateless Barrier. Hard. All 7s. 6d. net. The Wages of Sin. 8s. net. Colonel Enderby's Wife, 7s. 6d. net.
"

Wells (E.G.). BEALBY. Cr. 8vo. 7f 6d. net.

Fourth Edttton,

Mason (A. E. W.). CLEMENTINA. BdUion, Cr, Svo. Illustrated. Ninth 7s. 6d. net,

Hllne (A. A.)" Tub Holiday Round. The Day's Play. All Cr. Bvo. 7s. 6d. net. Once a Week. Cr. Sao, Side. The Sunny 6s. net. Hystert. The Red House Cr. 8"a.
6s. net.

WUllamson (0.n. and A. U.)" Conductor The Lightning : The Strange Adventures of a Motor Car. Lady Betty Water. It Happened the across in Egypt. The Shop Girl. The Lightning My Friend Conductress. the Set in Silver. The Chauffeur. Sbcret. The Pearl Great Love AU Cbucifiz Pirate. 7s, 6d, net, CoRNEB. 6s, net.

Methnen's Two-Shilling Novels


Cheap Editions of many
Write
of the most

Popular Novels of the day

for CompleteList
Fcap. Svo

J22