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I just read that a physicist Paul Dirac was called 'the Edwardian geek' by his biographer [See the quote below from Wiki]. What does this phrase mean (Who was that particular Edward)?

An anecdote recounted in a review of the 2009 biography tells of Werner Heisenberg and Dirac sailing on a cruise ship to a conference in Japan in August 1929. "Both still in their twenties, and unmarried, they made an odd couple. Heisenberg was a ladies' man who constantly flirted and danced, while Dirac—'an Edwardian geek', as biographer Graham Farmelo puts it—suffered agonies if forced into any kind of socialising or small talk. 'Why do you dance?' Dirac asked his companion. 'When there are nice girls, it is a pleasure,' Heisenberg replied. Dirac pondered this notion, then blurted out: 'But, Heisenberg, how do you know beforehand that the girls are nice?'"

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closed as general reference by FumbleFingers, Andrew Leach, Kristina Lopez, James McLeod, simchona May 12 '13 at 20:14

This question is too basic; it can be definitively and permanently answered by a single link to a standard internet reference source designed specifically to find that type of information.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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A geek of the Edwardian period, I'm guessing? –  Kristina Lopez May 12 '13 at 18:23
    
The Edward in question is King Edward VII (reg. 1901-1910) –  Andrew Leach May 12 '13 at 18:30
    
This is General Reference. Edwardian - of or pertaining to the reign of Edward VII, [geek]() - a computer expert or enthusiast, or a peculiar or otherwise dislikable person, especially one who is perceived to be overly intellectual. It's in quotes because the word probably didn't exist in Edwardian times (computer geeks as we know them today certainly didn't exist then). –  FumbleFingers May 12 '13 at 18:31
    
@FumbleFingers It is not easily accessible to non-English speakers. –  Dilawar May 12 '13 at 18:49
    
@ Dilawar: That may well be so - but so far as I'm concerned, such questions belong on English Language Learners. Which is only in "beta mode" at the moment, so I can't propose migrating this Q in my closevote, but I don't see this as a suitable issue for linguists, etymologists, and (serious) English language enthusiasts, as per the ELU FAQ. –  FumbleFingers May 12 '13 at 21:44

1 Answer 1

In this case 'Edward' could refer to Edward VII (Albert Edward; 9 November 1841 – 6 May 1910), who was King of the United Kingdom.

The First World War was approaching. Edward involved himself heavily in discussions over army reform. He supported the re-design of army command, the creation of the Territorial Force, and the decision to provide an Expeditionary Force supporting France in the event of war with Germany.

Paul Dirac could have been a supporter of King Edward VII.

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He could have been; but 'Edwardian' and 'Victorian' are often used to describe houses and furniture, so usually refer to the period not the politics. –  TimLymington May 13 '13 at 22:29

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