ALS in German, signed “Albert,” one page both sides, 5.5 x 7.25, Hamburg-Amerika Linie letterhead, January 1932. Significant letter to his sister Maja. Writing from Los Angeles as he disembarked from his boat for his second visit to Cal Tech, Einstein communicates his confidence and inner thoughts about his most recent work on 'The Unified Field Theory of Gravity and Electricity' (published in two parts in 1931: Weil *182 and *185). Written in collaboration with mathematician Walter Meyer, the theory presented a new formalism in which the fifth dimension was no longer an 'extension of the physical continuum.' This theory and work is deemed one of Einstein’s major scientific papers.
Einstein here announces that over the summer of 1931, “I found the mathematical correlation of gravitation and electricity.” In order to reach this new breakthrough, Einstein says “I had to drop a great deal of what I had patched together with great pains over the last three years”; and in commenting generally on the problematic of Unified Field Theory, Einstein avers that “The more closely one looks, the deeper are the abysses.” The present letter is historically significant as it is probably Einstein’s first written statement about the completion of this work on Unified Field Theory.
Having begun the letter by declaring that “life in Germany is becoming ever more problematic,” Einstein concludes in stating that he is reading a history of the Jews, which he finds “as horrible as it is mysterious.” In fine condition, with minor paper loss along the left edge affecting none of the handwriting.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.