Relativity: The Special and General Theory

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Relativity: The Special and General Theory  (1916) 
by Albert Einstein, translated by Robert William Lawson
Relativity: The Special and General Theory is an introduction to Einstein’s space-bending, time-stretching theory of Relativity, first published in December 1916. Special and General relativity explain the structure of space time and provide a theory of gravitation, respectively. Einstein’s theories shocked the world with their counterintuitive results, including the dissolution of absolute time. In this book, he brings a simplified form of his profound understanding of the subject to the layperson. In the words of Einstein: “The present book is intended, as far as possible, to give an exact insight into the theory of Relativity to those readers who, from a general scientific and philosophical point of view, are interested in the theory, but who are not conversant with the mathematical apparatus of theoretical physics.” The book is challenging at times but, when approached patiently, proves itself one of the most lucid explanations of Relativity to be found anywhere.

This edition was published in 1920.

Contents[edit]

This is a translation and has a separate copyright status from the original text. The license for the translation applies to this edition only.
Original:
This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1955, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 50 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.

 
Translation:
This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1960, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 50 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.

 

  1. The fifth Appendix was added by Einstein at the time of the fifteenth re-printing of this book; and as a result is still under copyright restrictions so cannot be added without the permission of the publisher.