Typed letter signed to historian of physics Jagdish Mehra
by Einstein, Albert
Princeton, 1952. Einstein, Albert (1879-1955). Typed letter signed to historian of physics Jagdish Mehra (1931-2008). 1 page (air letter); laminated in plastic. Princeton, July 2, 1952. 304 x 177 mm. Slight wear along folds, a few tiny holes not affecting text, laminate cracked in one margin, but very good. Written in response to Mehra's 1952 essay, "Albert Einstien's Philosophy of Science and Life," which was awarded the Adams Essay Prize of the International Council of YMCAs. In the preface to his book Einstein, Physics and Reality (1999), Mehra recalls the circumstances giving rise to the letter: "At a rather young age I wrote an essay with the pretentious title "Albert Einstein's Philosophy of Science and Life" for an open essay competition . . . I gave a copy of it to Paul Arthur Schilpp (Editor of Albert Einstein: Philosopher-Scientist, Einstein's 70th birthday volume), who was visiting my university to give a lecture; he forwarded it to Einstein. One fine morning I received an aerogram, marked '122 Mercer Street, Princeton, N.J.'; it contained a one-line message: 'Dear Sir: Apart from too unwarranted praise I find your characterization of my convictions and personal traits quite veracious and showing psychological understanding. With kind greetings and best wishes, sincerely yours, Albert Einstein [signed].' Much more than the prize which I won for my essay, Einstein's letter greatly excited and inspired me for a long time" (p. ix). Accompanying the letter is a computer typescript of Mehra's essay. $5000. (Inventory #: 42408)
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