Michele Angelo Besso
- A close friend of Einstein during his years at the
Zurich Polytechnic and then at the patent office in Bern. Besso,
a mechanical engineer, shared Einstein's affinities for classical
music and the philosophy of Ernst Mach.
Swabian woman whom Einstein hired as his personal secretary in 1928.
Helen traveled with the Einsteins on lecture tours, moved with
them to the United States in 1933, and cared for Einstein after
the death of Elsa in 1933.
- Einstein's father, a merchant
- Einstein's mother, a talented musician
- Einstein's younger sister and closest childhood
- Einstein's friend and fellow student at the Zurich
Polytechnic. Einstein, who often skipped his classes, relied upon
Grossman's lecture notes. Grossman continued to come to Einstein's
aid in later years, first by helping him to secure a position at
a patent office in Bern following his graduation, and then by working on
the mathematical calculations of the general theory of relativity.
- Einstein's cousin and second wife (after Mileva Maric).
Einstein moved in with Elsa in 1917 in Berlin, and she nursed
him back to health during a period of prolonged sickness. Einstein
and Elsa were married in 1919, and Einstein adopted Elsa's daughters
Ilse and Margot. Elsa moved with Einstein to America in 1933 and
lived with him at Princeton until her death in 1936.
Austrian philosopher and contemporary of Einstein who believed that
all science is based on empirical observations. Mach insisted
that science must be free of metaphysical speculation, including
any concept that does not have its root in observable phenomena.
Einstein and Mach corresponded with one another between 1909-1913,
a period during which Mach at first supported relativity theory
but then grew suspicious of its more mathematical formulations.
fellow student at the Zurich Polytechnic, and later his first wife.
She belonged to the Greek Orthodox Church and was of lower social
standing than the Einsteins, and thus Einstein's well-off Jewish
parents opposed the marriage. Einstein and Mileva had one illegitimate
daughter together, later given up for adoption, and then two sons
following their marriage in 1903. When Einstein moved to Berlin
in 1914, the couple separated and Mileva and their sons returned
- A German mathematician who re-interpreted Einstein's
theory of special relativity as a form of geometry, in which three
dimensions of space and a fourth dimension of time were united
in an "absolute world." Minkowski was also Einstein's mathematics
professor at the Zurich Polytechnic.
young medical student who would eat one meal a week with the Einstein family
when Albert was a child. Talmud introduced Einstein to Kant and
other philosophers and scientists, leading him to renounce his
strong religious faith by the age of thirteen.