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Signed photograph.

1932 Stock Code: 135297
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Signed by Einstein for a fellow advocate of a universal language

Signed by Einstein in ink below the image, "Albert Einstein, 1932". The photograph, showing Einstein in a pale pinstriped suit, wing collar, and plain necktie, was taken at a press conference on the occasion of Einstein's first visit to Caltech in Pasadena on 2 January 1931. Einstein wintered at Caltech in 1931, 1932, and 1933.

Provenance: from the collection of Leonard Nowell Mansell Newell pseud. Eleno Vinfero (1902-1968). Newell was an English Esperantist, teaching the language and editing various periodicals. He also wrote poetry strongly influenced by the Budapest School of writers. He spent the second half of his life in Australia. It is not recorded how Newell obtained the signed photo, but it may be significant that in late July 1932, the year of the inscription, Newell was secretary general of the 24th World Esperanto Congress in Paris. Einstein, an ardent anti-nationalist and supporter of international co-operation, took a favourable view of Esperanto, the auxiliary language created in the 1870s and 1880s by L. L. Zamenhof, a Jew from Bialystok, whose linguistic invention was viewed with great suspicion by Hitler and the Nazis. "For international communication, use of an international language is not only necessary," Einstein wrote, "it is the obvious solution. Esperanto is the best solution for an international language."

On 30 July 1932, Einstein was back in Germany, in Caputh near Potsdam, beginning, at the suggestion of the League of Nations and its International Institute of Intellectual Co-operation at Paris, his correspondence with Sigmund Freud, published later that year as Why War? (1932).

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Original photographic print (121 x 70 mm; image size 75 x 55 mm). Stock number printed on verso "1016".


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