Alfred Nobel

Today in 1833, Alfred Bernhard Nobel was born. The Swedish chemist is probably best known as the inventor of dynamite and other, more powerful explosives and for the annual prizes which bare his name. An explosives expert like his father, Nobel invented a safe and manageable form of nitroglycerin he called dynamite in 1866, and later, smokeless gunpowder and gelignite. He quickly amassed a huge fortune, much of which was left to fund the Nobel Prizes. First awarded in 1901, these prizes were for achievements in the areas of physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, and peace. The sixth prize, for economics, was instituted in his honour in 1969. For a more comprehensive biography click here. For some quotes from the great man, click here.


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