D O C . 1 9 8 D E C E M B E R 1 9 1 9 1 6 9 198. To Max Born [Berlin,] Monday. [8 December 1919][1] Dear Born, Your excellent article in the Frankfurter Zeitung pleased me very much.[2] But now you are being hounded by the press and other riffraff, just like I am, if only on a diluted scale. With me it’s so dreadful that I can barely breathe anymore, not to mention getting around to any sensible work. That article of Drill’s is amusing, be- cause he introduces the democratic method of appealing to the masses to peddle philosophy.[3] I would patiently let him flail about what a waste of time any reply would be. Save your temper and let the rascal go and blab. His proof of causality a priori is truly uplifting.– I was with Schlick for a few days in Rostock on the occasion of the university’s jubilee heard there at that event maliciously inflammatory political speeches and observed rather entertaining petty state politics.[4] The amusement lay in that they all know one another so intimately from the personal side that resounding notes, wherever they may strike, are inevitably accompanied by comical little dissonan- ces. The only formal hall available was the theater, by which the festivities acquired comedylike features. It was delightful to see how men of old and new governments were seated there in two proscenium stage boxes, one below the other. Naturally, the newcomers were harried in every conceivable way with sharp little jabs by the academic notables, the ex-grand duke receiving an interminable ovation.[5] No rev- olution helps against the ancestral spirit of servitude! Schlick is a fine mind we must see about getting him a professorship, especially considering that, with the devaluation of capital, he is in desperate need of one. It will be a hard task, though, because he is not a member of the established philosophical church of Kantians. Planck’s misfortune stirs my heart deeply.[6] I could not hold back my tears when I visited him after my return from Rostock. He is wonderfully brave and upright, but his aching pain shows through. Your wife’s letters are priceless, so earthy and apt.[7] I hope our friend Oppenheim soon finds the midwife he’s yearning for if not, the happy event can still be postponed a little.[8] My friend Haber also is living in such a nasty type of pregnancy, and, since your migration, has descended on me in his plight.[9] He has such a violent method by which he wants to force the truth out of nature. Any prac- tical doubts are stifled by his appeal to intuition. Thus he is a kind of raving barbar- ian, but still quite interesting, at that. Your confused Lorenz has categorically commanded me to Frankfurt for an extremely superfluous lecture [10] he is one of the funniest hens to populate the academic rostrum. Unfortunately, I have other worries. My mother is coming to our
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