Hans Thirring

Physicist, Politician

1888 – 1976

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Who was Hans Thirring?

Hans Thirring was an Austrian theoretical physicist, professor, and father of the physicist Walter Thirring.

Together with the mathematician Josef Lense, he is known for the prediction of the Lense-Thirring frame dragging effect of general relativity in 1918.

He received a deferrment during World War I because he had broken one of his feet while skiing. He was a leading pacifist before the Anschluss and after World War II. But he could not save his older son, who was declared missing in action during the final two months of World War II. His body was never located.

Hans Thirring served as assistant, professor, and head of the institute for theoretical physics of the University of Vienna until his forced retirement in 1938 after the Anschluss, the annexation of Austria by Nazi Germany. After the end of World War II, he was reinstated and became dean of the philosophical faculty in the years 1946-1947. He was also active in the Socialist Party of Austria and served as member of the Federal Council of Austria during 1957-1963.

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Mar 23, 1888
  • Austria
Mar 22, 1976

on July 23, 2013


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