Relativity circa 1921

I just happened to be browsing around Nature's website and noticed that they were going to be launching Nature Physics in a few months. But, more interesting than that (I thought anyway) was that they've made available (for free) PDF copies of the articles from a 1921 issue celebrating GR.

Many of the articles make for interesting reading and provide a neat look back into history.

In 1921, Nature published a special issue celebrating Einstein's general theory of relativity, with contributions from Eddington, Weyl, Lorentz and Einstein himself, among many others. Nature Physics is making that special issue available online for the first time.

Einstein had published his general theory of relativity in 1915, a decade after the special theory. In 1919, observations of a solar eclipse - from expeditions led by Eddington and Dyson - offered some of the first evidence in support of the theory.

Einstein was awarded the 1921 Nobel Prize for physics - not, of course, for his theory of relativity, but for his work on the photoelectric effect. Publication of that work in 1905, with papers on special relativity and brownian motion, marked the annus mirabilis of the Swiss Patent Office clerk. The centenary is now celebrated in World Year of Physics 2005.