Nobel Prizes are probably the most esteemed prizes that are awarded on earth. Scientists and people from political and diplomatic backgrounds dream about receiving this award after dedicated their whole lives in their field trying to make a difference in the world through their works. The reputation of these awards is so high that it is quite often that someone even dares to question the rightfulness of these awards.
But there have been moments in history when the recipient of Nobel awards were not considered worthy and the decisions were frowned upon. Undeserving candidatures (as according to public) is just an example of the lesser known facts about Nobel Prizes; for more here we bring to you 10 lesser known facts about Nobel Prizes:
10 Origin of Nobel Prizes
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Unlike any other award or prize; Nobel Prizes are given as according to the will of the Swedish industrialist and scientist Alfred Nobel. The will; which was dated in the year of 1895 on 27th November; stated a major amount of his wealth to be awarded in 5 areas; Physics, Chemistry, Peace, Literature and Medicine. At that time he left a huge sum of 31 Million Swedish Kroner that in today’s equivalence is about 265 million dollars to serve as fund for Nobel Prizes.
9 Addition of ‘Nobel’ in Economics
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While 5 awards were given in accordance to the will of Alfred Nobel; the addition of Prize in economics was done in 1968 by the Bank of Sweden in the memory of Alfred Nobel. Thus one can say that Nobel Prize in Economics is technically not a Nobel Prize. It is named as Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics and the selection for its winner is done by the same committee that chooses the winner in Chemistry and Physics. No mean to hurt any fan of a Nobel Prize winner in Economics; it is just one of the lesser known facts about Nobel Prizes.
8 Alfred Nobel and Irony with Peace Prize
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Nobel Peace Prizes are widely popular and no surprise in that as most people can relate to that no matter what their background is. Irony about the Peace Prizes awarded after the name of Alfred Nobel may sound ironic to some as Alfred was the discoverer of Dynamite. We can all be sure that there was no wrong intention in the hearts of the noble man but the discovery he made attracted the evil minds of human to cause many troubles in the history. No one can blame you if this fact about the Nobel Prize came as a shock to you.
7 Places of Distribution
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One of the strange facts about Nobel Prize is that not all of the Nobel Prizes are awarded at the same place. While the Nobel Prizes for Chemistry, Physics, Medicine, Economics and Literature are awarded at a ceremony that takes place in Stockholm, the capital of Sweden; the Nobel prize for peace are awarded in Oslo, the capital of Norway in a completely different ceremony. Even in the last will of Nobel at the Swedish-Norwegian club in Paris; it was not made clear by him that why the Norwegian committee is authorized to decide on Nobel Peace Prize Winner and why the other four prizes were awarded by Swedish committee.
6 Inscription on Nobel Prizes
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It is quite obvious to be curious and willing to know all the facts about Nobel Prizes. One question always strikes in the mind of people curious about Nobel Prizes and that question is that what exactly is inscribed on the medal that is awarded to the Nobel Prize winners. The one side of the medal awarded to Nobel Prize for Physics, Chemistry, Literature and Medicine states “Inventas vitam juvat excoluisse per artes,” which roughly can be translated as “And they who bettered life on earth by new found mastery.” The Nobel Peace Prize inscription says “Pro pace et fraternitate gentium,” and its meaning would be “For the peace and brotherhood of men.”
5 Stubborn Jury
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Nobel Prize awarding jury’s stubbornness is well known and some of the rules related to it also may surprise many people. Case for instance; Johannes Fibiger winning award in 1926 (and still the world is struggling!) in the field of Medicine. He claimed that he had found a cure for the cancer after a study on laboratory mice. Later on his theory proved to be wrong when it was found that it was not the parasites but vitamin deficiencies were responsible for those tumors. But the jury didn’t revoke the prize but instead became much careful in the future.
4 Youngest Person to Win Nobel Prize
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Child prodigies are always surprising but if someone has to tell you that the youngest person ever to win a Nobel Prize was only 17 years old. And that too she won this award in the field of Peace in the year 2014 was even more surprising. After seeing Nobel laureates who have dedicated their lifetime to claim this prize; this girl might become the reason for people’s envy. Malala Yousafzai (17) from Pakistan along with Kailash Satyarthi (60) from India was awarded by Nobel Peace Prize for their battle against stifling of children and young people’s rights.
3 Not Awarding Mahatma Gandhi
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So if we are talking about the Nobel Peace Prizes and come to know that the person who was considered the Angel of Peace on earth all over the world didn’t get Nobel Peace Prize; it would be a surprising fact about the Nobel Prizes. Though Gandhi was nominated 5 times; he never won it anyway and after his death in 1948; the jury didn’t give any Nobel Peace Award that year but declared instead that “there was no suitable living candidate” for the award which was a clear indication towards the recently passed Mahatma Gandhi.
2 Nobel Prizes Declined
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While most of the winner thank their stars and even could not believe their luck after receiving the prize; there have been people who have declined the award after being declared winner. Jean Paul Sartre and Le Duc Tho were awarded Nobel prizes in the year 1964 and 1973 respectively. They both declined the award while the former had declined all the prizes he received in the field of literature, the later declined the Nobel Peace Prize stating that he didn’t think peace was established in Vietnam.
However three German Laureates Richard Kuhn, Adolf Butenandt and Gerhard Domagk declined the award as they were pressurized and forbade by Hitler to accept the prizes. Also Boris Pasternak declined the Nobel Prize after accepting it in the pressure of the government of his native country; Soviet Union.
1 Nomination of Adolf Hitler
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We kept the most shocking of the fact about Nobel Prize for the last. Yes, Adolf Hitler was nominated in the year 1939 and that too for Nobel Peace prize. The whole incident was later regarded to be as a satire by E.G.C. Brandt but the conditions were not however of the manner that the satire could be taken light heartedly; so his nomination was later withdrawn on 1st February 1939.
So these were the 10 lesser known facts about the Nobel Prizes but for now we would like to congratulate Svetlana Alexievich (Literature); Arthur B. McDonald, Takaaki Kajita (Physics); Satoshi Ōmura, Tu Youyou, William C. Campbell (Physiology or Medicine); Paul L. Modrich, Tomas Lindahl, Aziz Sancar (Chemistry) for being awarded with Nobel Prizes 2015 quite recently.