I N T R O D U C T I O N T O V O L U M E 1 5 x l i of German scientists. He also remained committed to the shaping of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, although his enthusiasm for this cause was sorely tested during these years. Einstein received many honors, among them the Royal Society’s Copley Medal (Doc. 102, see Illustration 23), the Royal Astronomical Society’s gold medal (Doc. 178), and election as corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR (Abs. 668). He was also offered a faculty position at Johns Hopkins University (Doc. 465). I. Romance with Marie Winteler This volume contains hitherto unknown, much earlier correspondence between the sixteen-year-old Einstein and members of the Winteler family, with whom he lodged while attending the Aargau Kantonsschule in 1895–1896. In 2015, the Ber- nisches Historisches Museum made accessible a bundle of letters and postcards written by Einstein that had been obtained from the Winteler family estate.[3] Most of these letters are addressed to the eighteen-year-old Marie Winteler, his hosts’ daughter, with whom he became romantically involved at the time (see Illustration 1). They also include a “Contract for the Purchase of a Box of Water Colors,” drawn up with great, yet most likely, mock seriousness, by Einstein and his cousin Robert Koch (Vol. 1, 16c). Some of the items only exist as fragments or snippets, as many were torn and subsequently glued back together. Prior to the re- lease of this new correspondence, only one letter by Einstein to Marie, and two let- ters by Marie to Einstein, were known to scholars.[4] Two additional letters provided hints of the end of their relationship in 1897.[5] The twenty new letters and postcards from his youth, presented in full text, and the fourteen letters in the Calendar of Abstracts reveal Einstein’s passionate, affec- tionate, and playful sentiments for Marie. His earliest letters from Aarau date from the beginning of 1896, after Marie had taken up a temporary teaching position in the nearby town of Niederlenz. Even though she apparently returned home at least once a week, when the two young people could meet, Einstein’s letters express his deep longing for her during her brief absences and while he was on vacation with his family in Pavia. Unfortunately, Einstein did not preserve Marie’s letters to him. The letters document what appears to be Einstein’s first romantic love, with all the attendant highs and lows of adolescent passion. He was at times brought to tears by Marie’s notes to him. He alternately believed himself unworthy of her love, or described her as his “comforting angel,” or felt at one with her (Vol. 1, 16d, 16f, and 16g). He was worried that she might be undernourished and embarked on a “project” to help her gain weight by sending her sausages. He encouraged her to take frequent walks and play the piano (Vol. 1, 16b and 16f). At times, he also
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