This book, using a novel combination of historical and conceptual approaches, gives an accessible and eminently readable introduction to the main ideas of modern physics. The first five chapters are devoted to classical physics, from planetary motion to special relativity, always keeping in mind its relevance to questions of contemporary interest. The next six chapters deal mainly with newer developments in physics, from quantum theory and general relativity to grand unified theories, and the book concludes by discussing the role of physics in living systems. A minimal mathematical background is required of the reader, but technicalities are avoided as far as possible; thus complex calculations are omitted so long as the essential ideas remain clear. 'From the Cosmos to Quarks' is the outcome of the authors' long and varied teaching experience in different countries and for different audiences. It should serve as complementary reading for undergraduate and graduate studies in physics and other natural sciences, for engineers and for high-school teachers. The curious general reader, too, will come to understand what physics is about and how it describes the different phenomena of Nature. Not only will readers of this book learn much about physics, they will also learn to enjoy it.

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