An Uncommon Signed Engraving of a Younger Albert Einstein, By the Jewish Artist Hermann Struck

Much earlier than most signed images of Einstein

In 1905, while a young patent clerk and physicist in Bern, Switzerland, Albert Einstein obtained his doctorate and published a paper that explained his newly developed Special Theory of Relativity. This unlocked many mysteries of the universe, and introduced the world to “e=mc2,” equating mass and the speed of light with energy....

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An Uncommon Signed Engraving of a Younger Albert Einstein, By the Jewish Artist Hermann Struck

Much earlier than most signed images of Einstein

In 1905, while a young patent clerk and physicist in Bern, Switzerland, Albert Einstein obtained his doctorate and published a paper that explained his newly developed Special Theory of Relativity. This unlocked many mysteries of the universe, and introduced the world to “e=mc2,” equating mass and the speed of light with energy. It established that time and space are not fixed, and in fact change to maintain a constant speed of light regardless of the relative motions of sources and observers. Just 10 years later, in 1915, Einstein published his General Theory of Relativity, which describes the universe as a four-dimensional continuum (with time added as the fourth dimension), where gravitational effects are explained by the warping of space-time. In this theory, Einstein incorporated gravity as a geometric property of space-time.

The impact of Einstein’s work between 1905 and 1915 challenged many principles of physics that had been accepted for centuries. In 1921, he won the Nobel Prize for his work. Time Magazine named him the Person of the Century for the 20th century for his discoveries in relativity and space-time. Einstein is the most important scientist since Isaac Newton, and probably the most famous in history.

Hermann Struck was a German Jewish artist known for his etchings. In 1908, Struck published “Die Kunst des Radierens” (“The Art of Etching”), which became a seminal work on the subject. His students included Marc Chagall, Lovis Corinth, Jacob Steinhardt, Lesser Ury and Max Liebermann. Struck did commissioned portraits of Albert Einstein, Ibsen, Nietzsche, Freud, Herzl, Oscar Wilde among others.

Portrait of Albert Einstein, Hermann Struck, engraving circa 1918, 5.51 by 7.87 inches (and larger framed), signed and dated by Einstein June 1, 1920. Struck’s engraved signature is present as a Star of David.

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