In two different books I found these two related statements.

- The book by Jost defines a ``locally symmetric space" as one for which the curvature tensor is constant and which is geodesically complete.
- Andreas' book attributes to Cartan a theorem that a space is locally symmetric if and only if its curvature tensor is constant. Where he defines a space to be locally symmetric if about every point there is a geodesic reflecting isometry.

I could not trace this theorem of Cartan anywhere else nor does Andreas' book give a reference. I would like to know some reference which would prove this stuff and resolve the apparent definition conflict between the above two statements.

Further I came across these 3 statements about classifying constant curvature spaces,

If the isometry group is transitive on points on the manifold, then the scalar curvature is constant.

If the isometry group is transitive on all one-dimensional subspaces of tangent spaces, then the Ricci curvature tensor is a scalar multiple of the metric. tensor

- If the isometry group is transitive on all two-dimensional subspaces of tangent spaces, then the sectional curvature is constant on all two-dimensional subspaces of tangent spaces.

I have an understanding of why the first statement is true but I would like to know some reference which explains the other two statements.

Further call a space to be homogeneous if it is quotient of some Lie Group mod a closed subgroup. Then in physics literature one finds a statement of the kind that an "isotropic and homogeneous space-time is of constant curvature". I would like to know what is the precise mathematical meaning of this statement.

Further I would also like to know a reference for the fact that a maximally symmetric space always has constant curvature and how being maximally symmetric fits in with being "isotropic and homogeneous".

Many sources refer me to the volumes by Kobayashi and Nomizu or the book by Besse or Spivak for discussion on constant curvature spaces but unfortunately I don't have access to these books. It would be great if some online reference like lecture notes/expository review paper on constant curvature spaces could be linked which clarifies the above questions.

In the books on Riemannian Geometry that I have access to like the ones by Gallot et al,Andreas or Jost, I can't see much of any discussion on these topics.

{In all the above statements I suppose the Riemann Christoffel connection is being assumed. It would be interesting to know how much of the things hold for a general affine connection.}

Riemannian Geometry and Geometric Analysis(is this the right book by Jost?), Definition 5.3.3, one reads thatA complete riemannian manifold with $\nabla R \equiv 0$ is called locally symmetric.I believe this is not a correct definition: a locally symmetric space need not be complete. (Both Besse and Helgason agre with this.) $\endgroup$ – José Figueroa-O'Farrill Apr 21 '10 at 20:48