© 2006

Entropy, Large Deviations, and Statistical Mechanics

  • Provides a unified and mathematically appealing account of aspects statistical mechanics in a self-contained text

  • Assumes no background in the physics, and explains the necessary physical background

  • Each chapter is followed by a section of explanatory notes and problems

  • Includes more than 100 problems, many with hints to solutions


Part of the Classics in Mathematics book series (CLASSICS)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Large Deviations and Statistical Mechanics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Richard S. Ellis
      Pages 3-29
    3. Richard S. Ellis
      Pages 59-87
    4. Richard S. Ellis
      Pages 88-137
    5. Richard S. Ellis
      Pages 138-207
  3. Convexity and Proofs of Large Deviation Theorems

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 209-209
    2. Richard S. Ellis
      Pages 229-249
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 293-364

About this book


From the reviews:

"... Besides the fact that the author's treatment of large deviations is a nice contribution to the literature on the subject, his book has the virue that it provides a beautifully unified and mathematically appealing account of certain aspects of statistical mechanics. ... Furthermore, he does not make the mistake of assuming that his mathematical audience will be familiar with the physics and has done an admireable job of explaining the necessary physical background. Finally, it is clear that the author's book is the product of many painstaking hours of work; and the reviewer is confident that its readers will benefit from his efforts." D. Stroock in Mathematical Reviews 1985

"... Each chapter of the book is followed by a notes section and by a problems section. There are over 100 problems, many of which have hints. The book may be recommended as a text, it provides a completly self-contained reading ..." S. Pogosian in


Large deviations convergence properties mechanics statistical mechanics stochastic systems

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematics and StatisticsUniversity of MassachusettsAmherstUSA

About the authors

Richard S. Ellis received his B.A. degree in mathematics and German literature from Harvard University in 1969 and his Ph.D. degree in mathematics from New York University in 1972. After spending three years at Northwestern University, he moved to the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Judaic and Near Eastern Studies. His research interests in mathematics focus on the theory of large deviations and on applications to statistical mechanics and other areas. Information on his interests outside mathematics is available at He is Alison’s husband and Melissa’s and Michael’s father.

Bibliographic information

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