Albert Einstein is one of the most famous scientists of all time and is a role model for many budding scientists. Although it is widely known that he was a theoretical physicist who was born in Germany in 1879 and died in 1955, people often know very little else about this fascinating man. Here are ten strange and interesting facts about Einstein.
1) He Was a Slow Learner
Now considered to be a genius and often listed as one of the most intelligent men to live, Einstein was not always considered as bright. In fact, as a child, he was a slow learner who didn’t particularly excel in his education during the early years.
2) He Used Unusual Methods of Experimenting
Rather than using a laboratory for his experiments like most scientists, Einstein performed his experiments in his head using visualization techniques. His methods make him unusual in comparison to other physicists.
3) He Was an Agnostic
In spite of a mixed religious upbringing, Einstein considered himself to be an agnostic but not an atheist. His parents were non-observing Ashkenazi Jews and he attended a Catholic elementary school. The difference between an agnostic and an atheist is that an atheist does not believe that there is any form of God, while an agnostic does not follow a God themselves but is open to the possibility of the existence of one.
4) Einstein Was nobel Prize Winner
Einstein was awarded the prestigious Nobel Prize in Physics in 1921. He won this for his explanation of the photoelectric effect. However, he personally made no monetary gain from this award as his prize money went to his ex-wife as a divorce settlement.
5) He Had an Interesting Personal Life
Albert Einstein’s personal life is just as interesting as his academic career. He married his first wife, Mileva Marić, in 1903. The couple already had a daughter together, Lieserl, who was born a year before the marriage and it is believed that Einstein never met her. The fate of their daughter is unknown. They went on to have two sons together. Hans Albert was born in 1904 followed by Eduard in 1910. The couple divorced in 1919 but had already lived apart for five years by this point.
6) He Married His First Cousin
Einstein married Elsa Löwenthal, his second wife, in the same year as his divorce. He had actually been in a relationship with her since 1912, a significant overlap with his first marriage. As Elsa was a second cousin paternally and a first cousin maternally she had actually been born as an Einstein but took the name Löwenthal after her first marriage. Elsa died in 1936 after suffering from heart and kidney problems.
7) Einstein Was Well-Travelled
During his lifetime, Einstein was a well-travelled man. Born in Germany, his parents moved to Italy in his teens. Although he stayed in Munich to study, he spent much of these years in Italy. His secondary education was conducted in Switzerland and this is also the country he lived in with his first wife, Mileva. He emigrated to the United States with his second wife, Elsa, in 1933.
8) He Failed the University Entrance Exam
In 1965, Einstein sat the University entrance exam at the age of 16 for a place at the Swiss Federal Polytechnic, Zurich. Unfortunately, he failed to achieve the required standard in the general examination as a whole, but he did get outstanding results in the physics and mathematics components of the test. This meant he had to sit the examinations for a second time the following year and on this occasion, his application was successful.
9) Einstein Devised the Theory of Relativity
One of the things that Albert Einstein is most famous for is his theory of relativity. In spite of this, he never actually received a Nobel Prize in this field. The theory of relatively is still a topic of great interest and debate amongst theoretical physicists to this day.
10) He Had a Terrible Memory
Although he was highly intelligent, Einstein actually had a terrible memory. He found it extremely difficult to remember things like dates, telephone numbers and people’s names. This flaw did not prevent him from making some of the most phenomenal scientific theories in history.
These are just a few of the amazing facts about one of the best scientists ever known to man. There are many more interesting facts about Albert Einstein and he is a man well worth the effort of finding out more about. The achievements he made in his lifetime are outstanding and his scientific theories continue to be developed and debated to this day.