- Paul Ehrenfest's rough road to Leiden: a physicist's search for a position, 1904-1912
- Physics in Perspective
- Volume | Issue number
- 9 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR)
Institute for Theoretical Physics Amsterdam (ITFA)
Paul Ehrenfest (1880-1933) received his Ph.D. degree at the University of Vienna in 1904 and moved with his wife and young daughter to St. Petersburg in 1907, where he remained until he succeeded Hendrik Antoon Lorentz (1853-1928) in the chair of theoretical physics at the University of Leiden in 1912. Drawing upon Ehrenfest’s correspondence of the period, we first examine Ehrenfest’s difficult and insecure years in St. Petersburg and then discuss his unsuccessful attempts to obtain a position elsewhere before he was appointed as Lorentz’s successor in Leiden.
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