Albert Einstein (1879-1955) is a famous scientist, one of the founders of modern theoretical physics. In 1922, he even won the Nobel Prize for his work. Born in Germany, he spent the second part of his life in America. Einstein developed several important physical theories, the most famous of which is the Theory of Relativity. The scientist turned out to be a prominent public figure, he spoke out against wars, the use of nuclear weapons, for the observance of human rights.
Today we are still trying to take advantage of his theoretical discoveries, to confirm guesses. It is difficult to overestimate the contribution of Einstein to the development of mankind. The legendary personality is surrounded by numerous myths, which we will try to debunk.
Einstein was born into a religious Jewish family. Although Albert's parents were Jewish, they were not religious, as were the rest of the inner circle. My father called Jewish rituals ancient superstitions. Not having much love for Judaism, the parents sent their son to a Catholic school. There, Albert faced manifestations of anti-Semitism.
Einstein had developmental problems as a child. It is known that Albert did not speak until the age of seven. Modern psychology interprets this as a serious mental disorder. However, the scientist's biographers believe that he developed Asperger's syndrome. It is an autistic disorder. Because of it, speech centers do not work well in children and a failure in behavioral development occurs.
Einstein did not do well in school. In fact, the future genius was in high school. He was not interested in sports and foreign languages, discipline was severely lame. Einstein did not like the way teachers deal with students, which he openly stated. The militarized form of teaching seemed alien to him. Einstein saw the teachers of the lower grades as sergeant-major, and in the teachers of the older ones - lieutenants. But in the certificate, Albert had only one triple - in French, with a six-point scale. In physics and mathematics, the grades were excellent. Yes, and in French in 1923, the scientist already freely gave a lecture in Jerusalem. But English was poor for him. According to him, Einstein in 1896 was never certified. The myth developed because in Germany the rating system was the opposite of the Swiss one.
Einstein failed his final exams, passing them the second time. At the Luitpold Gymnasium in Munich, Albert felt uncomfortable due to the harsh rules. Yes, and his father recommended his son to get a sensible profession of engineer, since he fell in love with physics and mathematics. It was decided to send Albert to a technical university, but not to a German one. In Germany, at the age of 17, young people were drafted into the army. Einstein, who had dropped out, was sent to the Zurich Polytechnic. But the young man did not prepare to enter the chosen specialty - he did not like zoology, botany, languages. And he did not have a high school diploma. Then the director of the institute, seeing the mathematical talent of the applicant, advised him to finish the local high school and then enter. Albert graduated from the cantonal school in Aarau and in September 1896 entered the Polytech without any exams at all.
Einstein was a typical self-contained scientist. A person immersed in science, who has lost touch with the real world, is represented in a white coat and with shaggy hair like Einstein's. The image is complemented by the constant muttering of incomprehensible words. But Einstein himself had little to do with this, was lively, friendly and sociable. He was not a snob, he was charming and had a lively sense of humor. The scientist adored music, highlighting Bach, Mozart, Brahms. He played the violin, read a lot of fiction. This does not go well with the classic type of “mad professor”.
Einstein was a bad mathematician. This myth is often repeated by students, emphasizing that higher mathematics was not given even to Einstein himself. The myth about his dislike for this science arose during the life of the scientist. But then it only made him laugh. He never rejected mathematics, having mastered integrals and differentials even before the age of 15. From early childhood, the genius was carried away by solving complex problems, which the family doctor noticed and wrote in his diary. Albert studied algebra and geometry on his own. The boy forgot about games, about friends, immersed in books. And although he did not become a mathematical genius, he was always good at it. Einstein simply did not consider mathematics to be vital to himself. But later he realized that he needed the help of more experienced mathematicians to gain a deep understanding of the basic principles of physics.
Einstein received the Nobel Prize for his theory of relativity. The Nobel Prize was awarded to Einstein only in 1922. Although from 1910 to 1922 he was nominated for it more than 60 times! The only exceptions were 1911 and 1915. The scientific world wanted to celebrate Einstein's theory of relativity. But the prize was awarded for something completely different, for the theory of the photoelectric effect. To the members of the committee, she seemed to be a more impressive contribution to science. The 1921 Prize was postponed and awarded simultaneously with the 1922 Prize to Niels Bohr.
Einstein was a Soviet spy. Apart from science, the scientist was actively involved in social activities, wrote about politics and the equality of people. It even drew the attention of the FBI to him. As a result, the famous director of this Bureau, Edgar Hoover, put the scientist under surveillance. The authorities suspected Einstein of having links with the communists. In addition, he met with Margarita Konenkova, who was considered a Soviet spy. But the facts of the scientist's work in the USSR and the transfer of valuable information on the same Manhattan project were not revealed.
Einstein was offered the presidency of Israel. This story looks more like a bike. It is not even clear who put forward such a proposal - whether Chaim Weizmann, or Ben Gurion. The latter even seemed to be afraid that the scientist might agree. In any case, Einstein did not accept the offer. Science was more important to him, moreover, he believed in the friendship of Jews with Arabs. The scientist understood that the position was representative, and his age would not allow him to actively engage in politics. But Einstein bequeathed all his manuscripts and records to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Einstein made fun of Marilyn Monroe. There is a funny semi-anecdotal story. At one reception, Einstein found himself next to a movie star. She noticed that they could have perfect children. They would take beauty from mother and mind from father. To which the scientist wittily noted that there is a possibility that everything will be the other way around - appearance from the father and mind from the mother. The story of this is invented, and the poignancy is also attributed to Bernard Shaw. Interestingly, Marilyn Monroe was not at all a beautiful dummy; according to some reports, her IQ was even higher than that of Einstein.
Einstein was so sloppy that he didn't even wear socks. It is believed that the scientist basically did not use socks because of the frequent appearance of holes on them. But this story is difficult to verify. Most of the photographs show the scientist in close-up. But the fact is that he was careless about his clothes. There was even an anecdote in which Einstein refused his wife when asked to dress decently for going to the university. The scientist motivated this by the fact that everyone already knows him. And for going to the press conference, the reason not to dress up was that this time none of the journalists really knew Einstein.
Scientists have found an explanation for Einstein's genius in his brain. A few hours after the death of the genius, his brain was removed by a pathologist. Researchers have tried to find in this organ an explanation for the outstanding intelligence. It turned out that Einstein's brain weighed less than usual for a man of the same age. In this case, the organ was 15% wider than the usual one with a high density of neurons. True, many consider the results to be speculation. By definition, no two brains are alike. Einstein himself explained the genius of man not at all by his anatomical structure, but by immense curiosity.
The main scientific work for Einstein was done by his wife, Mileva Marich. Few people know that the first wife of the scientist, Mileva Maric, was herself a strong physicist and mathematician. It is believed that it was she who helped Einstein in the development of the theory of relativity, being in fact its author. However, no documentary evidence for this myth has been found. She did not pass the final exams at the Polytechnic Institute, although she showed high marks on intermediate tests. She never published a single work under her own name, neither during her life with Einstein, nor after her divorce from him. The same, after parting with his wife, continued to work fruitfully. None of the scientist's colleagues and family friends ever claimed that Maric somehow participated in her husband's work. In her published correspondence with him, it is clear that Mileva did not mention the theory of relativity, while Einstein himself pondered a lot on this topic. And the couple's first son, Hans Albert, said that after marriage, his mother abandoned her scientific ambitions.
Poincaré is the real author of the theory of relativity. Periodically, Einstein is accused of not referring to the work of his predecessors, Lorentz and Poincaré, in his first article on this topic. However, the first until the end of his life did not accept the theory of relativity, refusing to be considered its forerunner. Lorentz himself wrote in his letters to Einstein that it was he who developed the theory, to a greater extent than Poincaré. Inattention to the work of Poincaré was present, but all physicists of the beginning of the 20th century did this. There was no consistency in his articles; he understood relativism differently. Einstein's predecessors considered the issue from the standpoint of electrodynamics, he also managed to look more broadly, in a revolutionary way. And Poincaré himself never challenged Einstein's priority, writing him a friendly description. Lorenz generally recommended giving the scientist the Nobel Prize. There is no need to talk about plagiarism.
The formula E = mc² was discovered before Einstein. Historians of science have found similar formulas in the earlier works of Umov, Thomson, Poincaré, and Gazenorl. But their research was related to special cases - to the properties of the ether or charged bodies. But it was Einstein who first presented the formula as a universal law of dynamics, working for all types of matter and not limited to electromagnetism. The predecessors linked the relationship with the existence of a special electromagnetic mass, depending on energy.
The equations of the gravitational field were derived by Hilbert. Hilbert and Einstein deduced the final calculations almost simultaneously, using different methods. Until recently, it was believed that Gilbert received the result earlier, but simply published the calculations later than a competitor. But already in our time, Hilbert's calculations were analyzed. It turned out that the correct field equations were derived by him 4 months after Einstein, but the original version was significantly different from the final printed one. Hilbert's version was crude, it was completed after the publication of Einstein's work. And Hilbert himself never claimed priority in any part of general relativity. He himself readily admitted at lectures that the idea belonged to Einstein.
Einstein argued that the ether exists. In his 1905 work "On the electrodynamics of moving bodies" the scientist considered it unnecessary to introduce the concept of luminiferous ether. But in 1920, the work "Ether and Theory of Relativity" appeared, which created this myth. But the confusion lies in the terms. Einstein never really recognized the luminiferous ether of Lorenz-Poincaré. And in his article, the scientist simply called for the term to return to its original meaning, laid down in antiquity: the material filler of the void. In his understanding, the ether is a physical space for the general theory of relativity. Einstein said that to deny ether is to assert that empty space cannot have any physical properties. For the general theory of relativity, the ether is the basis for the propagation of light, the scale of the universe and time. But Einstein believed that it is impossible to consider the ether as a weighty matter, to apply the concept of motion to it. As a result, the new meaning of the old term did not find support in the scientific world.
Einstein in 1915 was engaged in the design of a military aircraft. Such a fact about the scientist unexpectedly appeared in one of his last biographies. But Einstein, with his pacifism, would hardly have taken up the creation of weapons. Research has shown that the scientist was simply discussing his ideas in the field of aerodynamics with a small aviation company. The idea of creating a wing like a cat's back turned out to be unfortunate.
Einstein was a vegetarian. Fans of this lifestyle often rank Einstein among their followers. He really supported the refusal of meat food for a long time, but he himself began to follow the diet only in 1954, a year before his death.
Before his death, the scientist burned the last works containing a discovery that could destroy a person. This beautiful legend is associated with the mysterious "Philadelphia Experiment". On the basis of the myth, the film “The Last Equation” was even made. However, this story is not supported by anything.
Einstein was an atheist. Einstein's views on religion are the subject of fierce controversy. Some call the scientist an atheist, while others - a believer in God. In an interview with the New York Times in 1930, the scientist spoke quite frankly and sharply on this topic. He said that he does not believe in a rewarding and punishing God, in one who is molded into a person. Einstein did not believe in the immortality of the soul. He described his views in the article "Science and Religion" in 1940. The scientist claims that the pursuit of scientific truth stems from religion. But he himself does not believe in a personified God. It is impossible to refute this doctrine itself, for it can always go into those areas that a person has not yet cognized. Einstein saw as religious in himself his admiration for the structure of the universe. A friend of the scientist, Max Gemmer, called such views a cosmic religion, and he himself was deeply religious. Einstein simply saw God in the form of that non-personalized spirit, embodied in the laws of the Universe.
Einstein stated that we only use 10% of the capabilities of our brain. The scientist himself never spoke about the extent to which humans use our brain. And science later proved that this organ is fully used by man.