Prussian Academy of Sciences

Entrance to the former Prussian Academy of Sciences on Unter Den Linden 8. Today it houses the Berlin State Library.

Academy established in Berlin, Germany on 11 July 1700, four years after the Akademie der Künste, or "Arts Academy," to which "Berlin Academy" may also refer.

- Prussian Academy of Sciences

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Joseph-Louis Lagrange

Italian mathematician and astronomer, later naturalized French.

Portrait of Joseph-Louis Lagrange (18th-century)
Lagrange's tomb in the crypt of the Panthéon
Joseph-Louis Lagrange

In 1766, on the recommendation of Swiss Leonhard Euler and French d'Alembert, Lagrange succeeded Euler as the director of mathematics at the Prussian Academy of Sciences in Berlin, Prussia, where he stayed for over twenty years, producing volumes of work and winning several prizes of the French Academy of Sciences.

Frederick I of Prussia

Frederick I (Friedrich I.; 11 July 1657 – 25 February 1713), of the Hohenzollern dynasty, was (as Frederick III) Elector of Brandenburg (1688–1713) and Duke of Prussia in personal union (Brandenburg-Prussia).

King Frederick I in 1701
Coronation of Frederick as King in Prussia at Königsberg Castle in 1701
Frederick I on a coin from 1691
Royal monogram of Frederick I
King Frederick I of Prussia

The Akademie der Künste in Berlin was founded by Frederick in 1696, as was the Academy of Sciences in 1700, though the latter was closed down by his son as an economic measure; it was reopened in 1740 by his grandson, Frederick II.

Pierre Louis Maupertuis

French mathematician, philosopher and man of letters.

Maupertuis, wearing "lapmudes" from his Lapland expedition
Commemorating stamp of the French Geodesic Mission to Lapland.
Maupertuisiana (1753), published anonymously by Voltaire or König. On the cover is represented Don Quixote (Maupertuis) attacking the windmills with the broken lance and exclaiming "Tremoleu!". Underneath there is Sancho Panza (Euler) riding a saddle, while to the right a satyr exclaims: "This is how you get to the stars!"

He became the Director of the Académie des Sciences, and the first President of the Prussian Academy of Science, at the invitation of Frederick the Great.

Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities

Official academic society for the natural sciences and humanities for the German states of Berlin and Brandenburg.

The academy's logo.
Entrance to the old Prussian Academy of Sciences on Unter den Linden 8. Today the building hosts some BBAW projects
The Academy of Sciences of the DDR, the AdW (1950)
The modern BBAW headquarters at Jägerstrasse 22/23 (2006)

The BBAW was constituted in 1992 by formal treaty between the governments of Berlin and Brandenburg on the basis of several older academies, including the historic Prussian Academy of Sciences from 1700 and East Germany's Academy of Sciences of the German Democratic Republic from 1946.

Jean le Rond d'Alembert

French mathematician, mechanician, physicist, philosopher, and music theorist.

Pastel portrait of d'Alembert by Maurice Quentin de La Tour, 1753
Nouvelles expériences sur la résistance des fluides
Portrait of Jean Le Rond d'Alembert, 1777, by Catherine Lusurier.

He was later elected to the Berlin Academy in 1746 and a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1748.

Albert Einstein

German-born theoretical physicist, widely acknowledged to be one of the greatest and most influential physicists of all time.

Einstein in 1921, by Ferdinand Schmutzer
Einstein at the age of three in 1882
Albert Einstein in 1893 (age 14)
Einstein's Matura certificate, 1896
Albert Einstein and Mileva Marić Einstein, 1912
Einstein in 1904 (age 25)
Olympia Academy founders: Conrad Habicht, Maurice Solovine and Albert Einstein
The New York Times reported confirmation of "the Einstein theory" (specifically, the bending of light by gravitation) based on 29 May 1919 eclipse observations in Principe (Africa) and Sobral (Brazil), after the findings were presented on 6 November 1919 to a joint meeting in London of the Royal Society and the Royal Astronomical Society. (Full text)
Einstein with his second wife, Elsa, in 1921
Einstein's official portrait after receiving the 1921 Nobel Prize in Physics
Albert Einstein at a session of the International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation (League of Nations) of which he was a member from 1922 to 1932.
Albert Einstein (left) and Charlie Chaplin at the Hollywood premiere of City Lights, January 1931
Cartoon of Einstein after shedding his "pacifism" wings (Charles R. Macauley, c. 1933)
Albert Einstein's landing card (26 May 1933), when he landed in Dover (United Kingdom) from Ostend (Belgium) to visit Oxford.
Portrait of Einstein taken in 1935 at Princeton
Einstein accepting US citizenship certificate from judge Phillip Forman
Einstein in 1947
Albert Einstein (right) with writer, musician and Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, 1930
Albert Einstein with his wife Elsa Einstein and Zionist leaders, including future President of Israel Chaim Weizmann, his wife Vera Weizmann, Menahem Ussishkin, and Ben-Zion Mossinson on arrival in New York City in 1921
Eddington's photograph of a solar eclipse
Einstein with Millikan and Georges Lemaître at the California Institute of Technology in January 1933.
Einstein at his office, University of Berlin, 1920
The photoelectric effect. Incoming photons on the left strike a metal plate (bottom), and eject electrons, depicted as flying off to the right.
Einstein during his visit to the United States
Newspaper headline on 4 May 1935
Einstein and Niels Bohr, 1925
The 1927 Solvay Conference in Brussels, a gathering of the world's top physicists. Einstein is in the center.
Einstein (second from left) at a picnic in Oslo during the visit to Denmark and Norway in 1920. Heinrich Goldschmidt (left), Ole Colbjørnsen (seated in center) and Jørgen Vogt behind Ilse Einstein.

In 1914, Einstein moved to Berlin in order to join the Prussian Academy of Sciences and the Humboldt University of Berlin.

Leonhard Euler

Swiss mathematician, physicist, astronomer, geographer, logician and engineer who founded the studies of graph theory and topology and made pioneering and influential discoveries in many other branches of mathematics such as analytic number theory, complex analysis, and infinitesimal calculus.

Portrait by Jakob Emanuel Handmann (1753)
1957 Soviet Union stamp commemorating the 250th birthday of Euler. The text says: 250 years from the birth of the great mathematician, academician Leonhard Euler.
Stamp of the former German Democratic Republic honoring Euler on the 200th anniversary of his death. Across the centre it shows his polyhedral formula, in English written as "v − e + f = 2".
Euler's grave at the Alexander Nevsky Monastery
Map of Königsberg in Euler's time showing the actual layout of the seven bridges, highlighting the river Pregel and the bridges.
An Euler diagram
Euler portrait on the sixth series of the 10 Franc banknote
Euler portrait on the seventh series of the 10 Franc banknote
Illustration from Solutio problematis... a. 1743 propositi published in Acta Eruditorum, 1744
The title page of Euler's Methodus inveniendi lineas curvas.
Euler's 1760 world map.
Euler's 1753 map of Africa.

Concerned about the continuing turmoil in Russia, Euler left St. Petersburg in June 1741 to take up a post at the Berlin Academy, which he had been offered by Frederick the Great of Prussia.

General relativity

Geometric theory of gravitation published by Albert Einstein in 1915 and is the current description of gravitation in modern physics.

According to general relativity, objects in a gravitational field behave similarly to objects within an accelerating enclosure. For example, an observer will see a ball fall the same way in a rocket (left) as it does on Earth (right), provided that the acceleration of the rocket is equal to 9.8 m/s2 (the acceleration due to gravity at the surface of the Earth).
Light cone
Schematic representation of the gravitational redshift of a light wave escaping from the surface of a massive body
Deflection of light (sent out from the location shown in blue) near a compact body (shown in gray)
Ring of test particles deformed by a passing (linearized, amplified for better visibility) gravitational wave
Newtonian (red) vs. Einsteinian orbit (blue) of a lone planet orbiting a star. The influence of other planets is ignored.
Orbital decay for PSR 1913+16: time shift (in s), tracked over 30 years (2006).
Orbital decay for PSR J0737−3039: time shift (in s), tracked over 16 years (2021).
Einstein cross: four images of the same astronomical object, produced by a gravitational lens
Artist's impression of the space-borne gravitational wave detector LISA
Simulation based on the equations of general relativity: a star collapsing to form a black hole while emitting gravitational waves
This blue horseshoe is a distant galaxy that has been magnified and warped into a nearly complete ring by the strong gravitational pull of the massive foreground luminous red galaxy.
Penrose–Carter diagram of an infinite Minkowski universe
The ergosphere of a rotating black hole, which plays a key role when it comes to extracting energy from such a black hole
Projection of a Calabi–Yau manifold, one of the ways of compactifying the extra dimensions posited by string theory
Simple spin network of the type used in loop quantum gravity
Observation of gravitational waves from binary black hole merger GW150914

After numerous detours and false starts, his work culminated in the presentation to the Prussian Academy of Science in November 1915 of what are now known as the Einstein field equations, which form the core of Einstein's general theory of relativity.

Immanuel Kant

German philosopher and one of the central Enlightenment thinkers.

Portrait by Johann Gottlieb Becker, 1768
Kant's house in Königsberg
Portrait of philosopher David Hume
Engraving of Immanuel Kant
Kant with friends, including Christian Jakob Kraus, Johann Georg Hamann, Theodor Gottlieb von Hippel and Karl Gottfried Hagen
Kant's tomb in Kaliningrad, Russia
Immanuel Kant by Carle Vernet (1758–1836)
Kant statue in the School of Philosophy and Human Sciences (FAFICH) in the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Immanuel Kant
In his Metaphysics, Immanuel Kant introduced the categorical imperative: "Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law."
5 DM 1974 D silver coin commemorating the 250th birthday of Immanuel Kant in Königsberg
Statue of Immanuel Kant in Kaliningrad (Königsberg), Russia. Replica by of the original by Christian Daniel Rauch lost in 1945.
West German postage stamp, 1974, commemorating the 250th anniversary of Kant's birth

In 1754, while contemplating on a prize question by the Berlin Academy about the problem of Earth's rotation, he argued that the Moon's gravity would slow down Earth's spin and he also put forth the argument that gravity would eventually cause the Moon's tidal locking to coincide with the Earth's rotation.

Friedrich Schleiermacher

German Reformed theologian, philosopher, and biblical scholar known for his attempt to reconcile the criticisms of the Enlightenment with traditional Protestant Christianity.

An engraving of Schleiermacher from his early adulthood.
A statue of Schleiermacher at Palais Universitaire in Strasbourg
His grave in Berlin

At the foundation of the University of Berlin (1810), in which he took a prominent part, Schleiermacher obtained a theological chair and soon became secretary to the Prussian Academy of Sciences.