Is Newton’s Theory of Gravity All Wrong
Rigge, William F., S.J.
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First Paragraph: In these days of unrest, when the alignment of nations, no less than their own internal machinery, is so seriously threatened with disarrangement that the established order of thousands of years runs risk of being utterly annihilated, it is no wonder that science also should be made to feel the new Zeitgeist and be shaken to its very foundation. Of all the dicta of science there would seem to have been none more firmly established than Newton’s theory of gravity, according to which all bodies in the universe attract each other with a force proportional directly to the product of their masses and inversely to the square of the distance between them. Now even this venerable thesis, loaded down with the highest mathematics and the endorsement of the last three most enlightened centuries, is brought before the bar of modern scrutiny to show its credentials and to vindicate its right to exist. And with its usual avidity for news, the more startling the better, the press has taken up the cause and given it world-wide publicity. As prosecutor it presents to us an Italian scientist who declares that experiments he has himself performed have “upset the hitherto accepted laws governing the motions of celestial bodies.”