Document Type

Dissertation

Publication Date

Spring 5-1-1899

Abstract

Maxwell's theoretical deduction, as to the propagation of electric and magnetic energy by means of vibrations of the ether, was established experimentally by Hertz in 1887. This was a oulminative master stroke ending the two hundred years old problem, raised by Newton, discussed since then by almost every scientist and philosopher, who either proposed that notion at a distance is the true explanation of the phenomena of the visible universe, or, who on the other side, holding action at a distance as absurd, taught the existance of an intervening medium, thus foreshadowing the greatest achievement of the nineteenth century, which forever will be known through coming generations as the “Ethereal century”. True, that only part of the Newtonian problem was solved, we know of the waves of sound, of light, of electricity, but singularly enough nothing as yet was done in the line of gravitation; we still know as little about it as the scientist of the eighteenth century, Here a set of men, following each other as Faraday, Maxwell and Hertz followed each other in theory of electricity and magnetism, are still to be expected.

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