A letter written by Albert Einstein in which he doubts the existence of God has been auctioned for $2.9m (€2.6m) in New York.

The letter, dated 1954, was written in German to philosopher Eric Gutkind and in it, Einstein said that he did not believe in God.

Einstein wrote: “The word God is for me nothing but the expression and product of human weaknesses.”
“The Bible, a collection of venerable but still rather primitive legends.”

In 2002, a letter dated 1939 from Einstein to US president Franklin D Roosevelt warning him about Nazi atom bomb preparations was auctioned for $2.1m. According to Christie’s Auction House, the ‘God Letter’ sold for a record price, surpassing its estimated $1-1.5m (€880k – 1.3m) valuation.

The letter was last sold to a private collector in 2008 for $404,000 (€356k).