I am aware that Albert Einstein first added the $\Lambda$-term to his field equations in his 1917 paper "Cosmological considerations in the general theory of relativity" (german: "Kosmologische Betrachtungen zur allgemeinen Relativitätstheory").

However, his orginial label for the constant was a "vorläufig unbekannte universelle Konstante $\lambda$", which translates to "for the moment unknown universal constant $\lambda$". I am interested in who first spoke of "cosmological constant", i.e. who coined the name that is most common for this constant nowadays and in what paper/publication was it first named as such.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ In this book, The Universe of General Relativity editor: A.J. Kox, Jean Eisenstaedt l24.im/gNsEed they cite de Sitter, who says, Einstein himself named this constant as "Cosmological Constant." p.162 This may have some authority since they wrote a book together. $\endgroup$
    – zeynel
    Aug 30, 2022 at 17:22
  • $\begingroup$ Where does Einstein use "vorläufig unbekannte universelle Konstante 𝜆" ? $\endgroup$
    – zeynel
    Aug 31, 2022 at 10:51
  • $\begingroup$ Oh wow! Thank you very much, this helps me a lot! Concerning his use of "vorläufig unbekannte universelle Konstant: In [Einstein, A. (1917). "Kosmologische Betrachtungen zur allgemeinen Relativitätstheorie". Sitzungsberichte der Königlich Preußischen Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Berlin] he states it on page 151, line 6-9. It his however not a "name" per se but rather a describtion. In the english version of this article - see here - the same passage can be found on page 430 in the passage before equation (13a), $\endgroup$
    – Octavius
    Aug 31, 2022 at 17:17


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