D O C . 4 8 M A Y 1 9 1 9 4 1
fessorship [Ordinariat], which I obviously very much welcome as well. That is
why undoubtedly only the more senior researchers will be considered.
May I ask you for the great favor of naming and describing the candidates you
deem most suitable? We have had only one committee meeting, which was a kind
of preliminary discussion. Then Dieterici recommended H. Zahn—here, Weber—
Rostock, Becker—Heidelberg, Koch—Munich, Harms—Würzburg, Valentiner—
Clausthal, Gans—La Plata, and
Madelung—Göttingen.[4]
According to my view, however, of all these only Gans and Madelung are con-
tenders. What do you think of Zahn as a theoretician? I think that he isn’t a theore-
tician at all, not even halfway, like Gans perhaps.
Harms, Valentiner, and Weber do not seem to me to be particularly creative. We-
ber’s work, which Dieterici singled out so much, was conceived to a large part by
others, e.g., P. Hertz; and what Weber wrote there is possibly not particularly
original?[5]
Above all, though, since I should like to see a genuinely pure theoretician here—
not, as Dieterici would like, a physicist who can help him properly with the intro-
ductory & medical practice sessions, forgetting the theory in the process—hence a
physicist who is completely at home with quantum theory, relativity theory, mod-
ern statistics, etc., I am now thinking of people like Thirring, Schrödinger, Flamm,
Lenz, Madelung, and
Reiche;[6]
Ewald, Scherrer, and O. Stern are probably—par-
ticularly for a full professorship—a little too
young;[7]
Schottky has, I believe, also
written all sorts of things
already.[8]
I made Flamm’s acquaintance last Pentecost in
Göttingen on the occasion of Planck’s
lectures,[9]
but he did not come across to me
as very alert and hardly lively, so that I doubt whether he is capable of captivating
the students or even maintaining their interest. Lenz’s newest paper on an inverted
Bohr model of the atom (Munich Proceedings, 1919) was pointed out to me by
Sommerfeld as particularly
good.[10]
P. Hertz?– In requesting that you do me the
great favor of replying as soon as possible, I am, with utmost esteem, yours very
truly,
A. Johnsen.
P.S. It will be of interest to you that in a separate vote I suggested Mr. M. Schlick,
among oth. for our philos. full
professorship.[11]
48. To Theodor Kaluza
[Berlin,] 29 May [1919]
Dear Colleague,
It is true that I made that blunder with the
ds
and ds in my introductory
discussion.[1]
I see that you have also thought about this matter quite thoroughly. I
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