Forget relativity: it turns out Albert Einstein's thoughts on philosophy are just as revered as his workings on time and space - after one of this thoughts on the pursuit of a happy life sold at auction for more than $1.5m (£1.1m).
Israeli auctioneer Winners said a three-line philosophy, handed to a messenger in Tokyo in lieu of a tip in 1922, had been expected to sell for between $5,000 and $8,000, but ended up going under the hammer for $1.56m at an auction yesterday.
According to Winners, Einstein gave the note to a courier during a stay in Tokyo in which the scientist was "impressed but also a little embarrassed" by the publicity he received. When the courier brought something to his hotel room, Einstein had no cash, so "decided to make the most of his new exalted status" and passed on his wisdom instead.
Einstein's advice? "Stilles bescheidenes Leben gibt mehr Glueck als erfolgreiches Streben, verbunden mit bestaendiger Unruhe." Or, in English:
A calm, modest life brings more happiness than striving for success, combined with constant anxiety.
According to Winners, it was during the same visit to Japan that Einstein was informed he had won the Nobel Prize for Physics.
"Einstein decided to continue his journey according to his original plan, and he was absent from the ceremony in Stockholm in December," it added.
"The news of the Nobel Prize winner's arrival in Japan spread quickly, and when he arrived he found himself being welcomed by thousands of people flocking to see him."
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