D O C U M E N T 6 7 J U N E 1 9 2 3 6 5
67. From Paul Ehrenfest
Leyden, 23 June 1923
Dear Einstein,
Your statement about little Albert stunned me (and my wife) very
am, of course, firmly convinced that in one to two weeks everything will be fine
again, and so perhaps I had better keep my trap shut, mindful of the wise maxim
that a stranger should never meddle in an affair between two especially closely con-
nected persons.— But the devil take all maxims!!!!!!, when I feel that I have to give
my (unsolicited) opinion. So then, it’s
Absolutely regardless of what little Albert wrote to you and how, and how
preposterous it may have been—what kind of a strange reaction from you is it, that
therefore you “cannot meet him this
If this entire matter weren’t so se-
rious, I’d have burst out laughing about this boyish reaction of yours: “Thank God,
Einstein’s still young, despite his fat paunch!”–
In reality, the matter is such that never before in Albert’s life has it been so ur-
gently necessary as just at this moment that both of you meet right now, and the
sooner the better. Because, what’s the point? Both of you want precisely the same
thing in the whole affair:—namely, the best possible provision for Mileva and both
Consequently, all that separates you is some misunderstanding and
(understandable!!!!!!) mistrust. (I underscore this “understandable” because I hope
that it’ll annoy you and allow your Proto-Germanic self-respect to “let off steam”
at me to
But by what means should such murky mistrustful misunder-
standings be removed? By letters? Furious punishment reflexes?!— Oh, throw
those old-fashioned theater props to the devil quickly and let Albert come and see
you as soon as possible.— I know how dear that bear cub with his double-bass is.—
Clearly explain to him why you’ve been seething for so long and let
which way to choose in Mileva’s interest. Don’t you decide it, rather help him gain
a clear overview of the various options.— Oh, much more important things are in-
volved here!
And immediately abstract, at this very instant, all the “words” he wrote and will
say.—You’re no fraternity student, insisting on a duel because somebody has stared
“fixedly” at you.— Blast it, you do know what little Albert is fundamentally. And
he’d have to be a cold egoist or a totally sleepy loaf if he didn’t mount his steed
Don Quixote-like for Mileva from time to time. I love him all the more, precisely
for it!!—
Γμν λ
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