This book is dedicated,

in respect and admiration,


The Principle of Least Action

“The author has spared himself no pains in his endeavour to present the main ideas in the simplest and most intelligible form, and on the whole, in the sequence and connection in which they actually originated. In the interest of clearness, it appeared to me inevitable that I should repeat myself frequently, without paying the slightest attention to the elegance of the presentation. I adhered scrupulously to the precept of that brilliant theoretical physicist L. Boltzmann, according to whom matters of elegance ought be left to the tailor and to the cobbler.”

Albert Einstein, in Relativity, the Special and General Theory, (1961), p. v