Vol. 5 No. 2 (2016)
Historical Pills

Einstein’s piano

Published October 17, 2016
How to Cite
Palla, F. (2016). Einstein’s piano. Il Colle Di Galileo, 5(2), 9-27. https://doi.org/10.13128/Colle_Galileo-19144


This is the story of the time spent in Florence by two members of the Einstein family – Maria, Albert’s younger sister, and their cousin Robert – by the painter Hans-Joachim Staude, German by birth but Florentine by adoption, and of the private visits made by Albert Einstein. The pivotal role in this tale is played by the piano which Albert sent by Albert as a birthday gift to his sister Maria from Berlin to Quinto, close to Florence, where she lived with her husband, Paul Winteler. Passed from Hans-Joachim to his son Jacopo, the piano remained for many years at the Staude country house on the hills of Florence. Since June 23 the Staude family has entrusted the piano to the library of the Astrophysical Observatory of Arcetri, where it now stands as the only surviving witness of a singular meshing of scientific and historical events and human stories.


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