Albert Einstein’s stepdaughter Margot Einstein bequeathed some of her step-father’s personal papers to Hebrew University on the condition that they be sealed for 20 years after her death. She passed away in July of 1986 and sure enough, 20 years later, the Hebrew University made these papers public.
And what new things have we learnt about this great scientific genius? Well, for starters, we learn that he wasn’t a great financial genius, having pissed away most of his Nobel Prize money on bond investments that got wiped out thanks to the great depression.
We also learn that little Albert was quite the ladies’ man. Married twice, the papers reveal that Einstein also had a number of mistresses. Go figure! I mean, when you think “gallavanter,” the image of Albert Einsten isn’t usually the first thing that comes to mind. Actually, that image is kind of disturbing – shleppy Einstein hooking up with socialites and secretaries. Yikes.
But maybe Einstein was onto something there. In this month’s Atlanta Jewish Life, it was noted that in order to combat declining Jewish birthrates, it had been suggested by several people, including philathropist Michael Steinhardt that Jewish men take concubines and/or second wives. Maybe Einstein was simply ahead of his time? Of course Einstein’s first wife wasn’t Jewish and he didn’t have any kids with his Jewish second wife (maybe because she was also his 1st cousin?) or with any of his girlfriends, so who knows.
Feel free to read all about it in this article in the Boston Globe.