Dec 07, 2014 04:48 PM EST
There's a point in nearly every individual's life when they come to realize that their idol is nothing if not human beneath their perfect façade. And for some it's a tragic state of affairs that reveals this shocking truth. But for others, it's a sobering revelation that creates a tangible connection between them and their idol.
If you're a fan of genius Albert Einstein, and you've even got his haircut to match, this week you will be surprised to learn that you'll have over 80,000 more reasons to idolize the beloved scientist, including perhaps a love letter or two that reveal a bit of a playboy side to the rebellious physicist. Released beginning this past Friday, Dec. 5, the Princeton University Press and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, whom inherited Albert Einstein's vast written history in the form of some 80,000 documents he left behind, have digitized what is left of Einstein's written words in a new online archive called "Digital Einstein".
Diving deeper into Einstein's formative early years, researchers from the universities have spent many years archive and studying the papers, letters, postcards and diary entries left by Einstein when he died in 1955. But now for the first time the public will now have unlimited access to the archive created in collaboration between the universities as part of their "Einstein Papers Project". And while the researchers have been able to publish books and analyses documenting Einstein's ascent into the world of physics and the public eye, up to the age of 44, many believe that with the archive available to the public for the first time in over 6 decades, that more truths will be revealed about the physicist himself.
"This is Einstein even before he was famous" director of the Einstein Papers Project which created the archive, historian Diana Kormos-Buchwald says. "This material has been carefully selected and annotated over the last 25 years."
Visitors to the online archive will come to find an entirely unique view of the scientist, told by the perspective and vantage point of Einstein himself. In diary entries, letters and postcards, readers will be able to engage with Einstein on a whole new level as they uncover the all too human aspects of the sordid details of his life. Once an irresistible playboy, turned borderline mad-scientist of his era, Einstein was a man known for his rebellious nature. And readers will come to find that the 20th century's greatest genius was, when it all boils down, a man looking for adventure and answers to the universe.
"The young Einstein was a Bohemian, not the sage we think of now" NYU historian Matt Stanley says. "He was disrespectful to his professors and skipped classes because he knew he could pass anyway [and] he hung out in beer halls to argue about the nature of space and time."
All in all, his legacy continues as an icon and a genius in the arena of physics, but now Albert Einstein's posthumous street-cred may also be heightened as well. Check out the archive for yourself, and you're certain to find at least a few stories that will make you laugh and make you cry:
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