What Is Ether, What Does It Mean?July 1, 2021
Fluid substance supposed to fill the void. Ancient Greek naturalists; They felt compelled to add a fifth element to Empedocles’ four elements of fire, air, water and earth. They named this fifth element with the word aiher, meaning the highest layer of air. The word originated from the root aidh, which expresses the idea of burning the Indo-European language.
The Greek word aithô also meant to burn. In particular, they were of the opinion that atoms could not float in vacuum without such a fluid substance. As a matter of fact, centuries later, famous thinkers such as Descartes and great physicists such as Newton agreed with this opinion of the ancient Greeks. This hypothetical substance, translated into Ottoman Turkish with the term “La. Aether”, was likened to a burning light, as its root meaning expresses. Just as the sea waves are carried by water and sound waves by air, for example, to carry light waves, such an environment, albeit unknowable and incalculable, was required. Famous scientists such as Faraday and Maxwell have also reinforced this assumption in various ways. The main idea was: Light, heat, electricity, etc. required an environment in which various vibrations could vibrate, such as; Without such an environment, these vibrations could not take place.
This belief continued until 1881, getting stronger and stronger. Some physicists saw the basis of matter in this, and thought that matter might have come from the condensation of this unknown and unidentified object. In 1881, two physicists, Michelson and Morley, discovered through an experiment that there was no object called ether in the universe. Einstein’s special theory of relativity also proved that no such assumption was necessary.