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Henry Cavendish

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Posted by pmb on March 25, 2000 01:51:17 UTC

Sorry. I forgot about Cavindish. There was an article in the Am. J. Phys. by Clifford M. Will describing Cavindish`s 1784 prediction of the deflection of starlight. You might find it interesting. See Henry Cavendish, Johann von Soldner, and the deflection of light
Clifford M. Will, Am. J. Phys., Vol. 56, No. 5, May 1988 Pages 413 - 415

The gravitational deflection of light based on Newtonian theory and the corpuscular model of light was calculated, but never published, around 1784 by Henry Cavendish, almost 20 years earlier than the first published calculation by Johann Georg von Soldner. The two results are slightly different because, while Cavendish treated a light ray emitted from infinity, von Soldner treated a light ray emitted from the surface of the gravitating body. At the first order of approximation, they agree with each other; both are one-half the value predicted by general relativity and confirmed by experiment.

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