D O C . 2 0 4 D E C E M B E R 1 9 1 9 1 7 5 the last 15–20 years, consciously do I now need to drown in that again? But God only knows, this old man may be right: maybe salvation of the masses can only be bought by the hardest sacrifice—sacrificing the last remnants of “purity.” [Please don’t read this as elegant empty words!][14] —Well, maybe that’s how it is—but then my powers do not suffice. Now you understand why I had such a great need to write you.[15] A reply to this letter is completely unnecessary! It actually is quite strange: there are many people I know quite well, but how very small is the group of those with whom one can relax. Fond greetings! Yours, Ehrenfest. Relay many thanks to your wife from me.– Galinka needs only a 4/4 violin, just like Tanya.–[16] Just throw out the needless visitors who are accosting you now about gravitation.—I’m very dismayed about your news of Planck.[17] Now I’m glad that I had written him very emotionally, which had made me feel ashamed once the letter had gone out. 204. To Paul Ehrenfest [Berlin,] 10 December 1919 Dear Ehrenfest, I bought for you: 1. One splendid little grand piano (Hupfeld Company) of purchase price 16500 marks, which I have already paid without freight.[1] It is, at the current rate of ex- change, not more than you had resolved to spend.[2] I’ll make inquiries about the shipping and insurance in the next few days.[3] It’s a magnificent instrument with sensitive key action. It was very difficult to get anything at all. You will have to be a little patient about the delivery. One day soon my mother will arrive with the doc- tor. We’ll have to lodge her in our apartment in my study. It’s a very wretched state of affairs.[4] 2. Two violins, as yet nonexistent, thus once they are finished, brand spanking new (each a little over 2000 marks).[5] I ordered one for myself too, directly from the man. There’s a craftsman in violin making for you! I have already played some of his violins before, and now again, and am very enchanted with them. He is start- ing in a day or so, consequently they will be ready in about 2 months. Whether de- livery will be advisable then, I don’t know. It would probably be best if I brought the instruments along myself,[6] one for the time being, the other later. Or else we should send them along with another traveler to Holland.
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