Weyl's search for a difference between `physical' and `mathematical' automorphisms

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Scholz, Erhard
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During his whole scientific life Hermann Weyl was fascinated by the interrelation of physical and mathematical theories. From the mid 1920s onward he reflected also on the typical difference between the two epistemic fields and tried to identify it by comparing their respective automorphism structures. In a talk given at the end of the 1940s (ETH, Hs 91a:31) he gave the most detailed and coherent discussion of his thoughts on this topic. This paper presents his arguments in the talk and puts it in the context of the later development of gauge theories.