Reference Entry

Einstein, Albert

Lewis Pyenson

in American National Biography Online

Published in print January 1999 | ISBN: 9780195082098
Published online February 2000 | e-ISBN: 9780198606697 | DOI:
Einstein, Albert

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Einstein, Albert (14 March 1879–18 April 1955), theoretical physicist, was born in Ulm, Germany, to Hermann Einstein and Pauline Koch, who had married in 1876. In 1880 the family moved to Munich. There Hermann ran various industrial concerns, eventually managing an electrical business in which his younger brother Jakob provided the technical direction. The two Einstein families lived together in a large house in a Munich suburb. Albert Einstein and his younger sister Maria (Maja) grew up surrounded by Jakob’s electrical innovations. Jakob also provided young Albert with science textbooks, notably a seminal exposition of Euclidean geometry. Einstein went to a local primary school and then attended the Luitpold Gymnasium, a progressive secondary school. He succeeded admirably in all his subjects. Following elementary school practice, he received lessons in Judaism, the registered religion of his free-thinking parents. His mother had him study violin privately, and the instrument provided him solace throughout his life....

Reference Entry.  3357 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Physics

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