## 7-2-45. David Hilbert to H. Poincaré, English translation

Göttingen 6.5.1912^{1}^{1}endnote:
^{1}
The postcard is addressed simply to “Herrn
Professor H. Poincaré – Membre de l’Institut de France – à Paris”.

Esteemed Colleague,

Recently in the *Journal de Physique* you published an important
work Théorie des Quanta.^{2}^{2}endnote:
^{2}
Poincaré (1912) showed in general
that in the limit of extremal frequencies, there is no continuous
law of radiation compatible with Planck’s law. On Poincaré’s
contribution to quantum theory and its influence, see
McCormmach (1967), Kuhn (1978, 210), and Krips (1986). For
analyses of Poincaré’s paper, see Prentis (1995) and
Irons (2001).
I would consider myself most
fortunate to have an offprint of this.^{3}^{3}endnote:
^{3}
Hilbert was
unfortunate, as Poincaré explained he had no offprints; see Poincaré
to Hilbert, ca. 7 May, 1912 (§ 4-40-10).

With best regards,

Your most devoted,

Hilbert

English translation by S.A. Walter of (§ 4-44-9).

Time-stamp: " 4.06.2024 20:07"

### Notes

- 1 The postcard is addressed simply to “Herrn Professor H. Poincaré – Membre de l’Institut de France – à Paris”.
- 2 Poincaré (1912) showed in general that in the limit of extremal frequencies, there is no continuous law of radiation compatible with Planck’s law. On Poincaré’s contribution to quantum theory and its influence, see McCormmach (1967), Kuhn (1978, 210), and Krips (1986). For analyses of Poincaré’s paper, see Prentis (1995) and Irons (2001).
- 3 Hilbert was unfortunate, as Poincaré explained he had no offprints; see Poincaré to Hilbert, ca. 7 May, 1912 (§ 4-40-10).

## References

- Poincaré’s 1911–12 proof of quantum discontinuity interpreted as applying to atoms. American Journal of Physics 69 (8), pp. 879–884. link1, link2 Cited by: endnote 2.
- Atomism, Poincaré and Planck. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 17 (1), pp. 43–63. link1, link2 Cited by: endnote 2.
- Black-Body Theory and the Quantum Discontinuity, 1894–1912. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. Cited by: endnote 2.
- Henri Poincaré and the quantum theory. Isis 58, pp. 37–55. link1 Cited by: endnote 2.
- Sur la théorie des quanta. Journal de physique théorique et appliquée 2 (1), pp. 5–34. link1 Cited by: endnote 2.
- Poincaré’s proof of the quantum discontinuity of nature. American Journal of Physics 63 (4), pp. 339–350. link1, link2 Cited by: endnote 2.