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Albert Einstein's letter on Nazis sold for $14,000

Albert Einstein
Image caption Albert Einstein fled Germany for the US when Hitler came to power in 1933

A 1939 letter from Albert Einstein warning of the "calamitous peril" to Jews posed by the Nazis has been sold at auction for nearly $14,000 (£9,000).

The Nobel-winning physicist's letter to a New York businessman, Hyman Zinn, sold for double its estimate at auction in the US state of California.

In the typed letter, Einstein praises Zinn for his work in helping Jews flee persecution in Adolf Hitler's Germany.

Einstein himself fled Germany for the US when Hitler came to power in 1933.

"It must be a source of deep gratification to you to be making so important a contribution toward rescuing our persecuted fellow-Jews from their calamitous peril and leading them toward a better future," he wrote.

The letter - described as in "very good to near fine condition" - sold for $13,936 including buyer's premium, said Los Angeles auction house Nate D Sanders.

Dated 10 June 1939, it has Einstein's embossed Princeton University address and the original mailing envelope.

The reserve price was between $5,000 and $7,000.

The author of the theory of general relativity wrote: "The power of resistance which has enabled the Jewish people to survive for thousands of years has been based to a large extent on traditions of mutual helpfulness.

"In these years of affliction our readiness to help one another is being put to an especially severe test. May we stand this test as well as did our fathers before us."

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