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Israel allocates millions for Einstein museum, set to be world’s largest of its kind

Physicist bequeathed his archives to the Hebrew University, and curator Roni Grosz says its 85,000 items make it the world’s most extensive collection

Undated photo shows famed physicist Albert Einstein. (AP Photo, File)
Undated photo shows famed physicist Albert Einstein. (AP Photo, File)

The Israeli government decided on Sunday to allocate millions of dollars for a museum to house the world’s largest collection of Albert Einstein documents, the Hebrew University said.

It will be built on the university’s Givat Ram campus in Jerusalem, with the government committing to approximately $6 million and the university raising another $12 million.

Einstein, one of the founding fathers of the Hebrew University, was a non-resident governor of the institution.

Lauded as one of the greatest theoretical physicists of all time, Einstein died in 1955, at the age of 76.

He bequeathed his archives to the university, and curator Roni Grosz said its 85,000 items make it the world’s most extensive collection of Einstein documents.

The museum will house the entire Einstein archive, and serve as an “innovative space for scientific and technological education,” the university said.

Albert Einstein, during a lecture in Vienna in 1921. (Wikipedia/public domain)

“With cutting-edge exhibition techniques, scientific demonstrations, and original documents, the museum will present Einstein’s contributions to science, the impact of his discoveries on our lives today, his public activity and involvement in key historical moments during his lifetime,” a statement said.

A student sits under a statue of Albert Einstein by sculptor Georgy Frangulyan, at Hebrew University’s Givat Ram campus, in Jerusalem, September 18, 2022. (Mark Schulman/Times of Israel)

“Albert Einstein is an asset, the biggest brand name in the world for intelligence, science and genius,” Alternate Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Saturday of the planned museum.

“Around the world, in China, India, the US, and everywhere, Albert Einstein is synonymous with genius.”

He expressed hope that the museum “will serve as a pilgrimage site for anyone who wants to become familiar with Einstein, Jewish intelligence, and intelligence in general.

“Israeli teens as well as tourists and scientists from around the world will be able to receive inspiration from him.”

Einstein’s theories of relativity revolutionized the field by introducing new ways of looking at the movement of objects in space and time.

He also made major contributions to quantum mechanics theory, and won the Nobel physics prize in 1921.

Einstein also became a pop culture icon because of his dry witticisms and trademark unruly hair, mustache and bushy eyebrows.

Original papers written by Einstein sell for millions at auction to this day.

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