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    Sale 7590

    Valuable Manuscripts and Printed Books

    4 June 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 105

    EINSTEIN, Albert. Autograph letter signed ('Papa') to his first wife, Mileva, n.p., n.d., 2½ pages, 4to, bifolium.

    Price Realised  


    EINSTEIN, Albert. Autograph letter signed ('Papa') to his first wife, Mileva, n.p., n.d., 2½ pages, 4to, bifolium.

    CHILD-REARING AT A DISTANCE. There has been a catalogue of misunderstandings ('eine Kette von Missverständnissen'): Einstein was disappointed not to have his elder son Hans Albert coming for a solo visit, but only under the protection of Michele Besso ('Auch ich war etwas enttäuscht, dass ich Albert nicht allein bekommen sollte sondern nur gewissermassen unter Besso'schem Schutze'). But he had agreed to this, as it seemed obvious that this was a course agreed between Besso, Mileva and Hans Albert -- it had never occurred to him that it might be Besso's own initiative; now he is further disappointed by Hans Albert's letter, which is 'wirklich sehr unfreundlich'. The present state of affairs is that Einstein cannot undertake a significant journey merely to spend two or three days with his son; but he must in any case go to Berne at Easter, and hopes to take advantage of this opportunity to spend time with him. The main thing is that his son is now reaching an age at which Einstein can be an important influence on him ('Albert kommt jetzt allmählich in das Alter, in dem ich ihm sehr viel sein kann'), and Mileva can leave him to his father from time to time without worrying in the slightest that this will damage her relationship with him: 'For my influence is limited to the intellectual and aesthetic. I should teach him above all to think, judge and appreciate objectively [Denn mein Einfluss beschränkt sich auf das Intellektuelle und Aesthetische. Ich will ihn hauptsächlich denken, urteilen und objektiv zu geniessen lehren]'. The experience should be pleasant as well as fruitful for the boy, but it requires time: 'being together for a few days is just a feeling without deeper value [ein Zusammensein für wenige Tage ist nur eine Sensation ohne tieferem Wert]'.

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