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Friday, August 21, 2009

Who is the youngest ever to receive a Nobel Prize, and who is the oldest?
The youngest Nobel Laureates at the time of the award, 10 December each year.
Age Name Category/Year Date of birth
25 Lawrence Bragg Physics 1915 31 March 1890
31 Werner Heisenberg Physics 1932 5 December 1901
31 Tsung-Dao Lee Physics 1957 24 November 1926
31 Carl D. Anderson Physics 1936 3 September 1905
31 Paul A. M. Dirac Physics 1933 8 August 1902
32 Frederick G. Banting Medicine 1923 14 November 1891
32 Rudolf Mössbauer Physics 1961 31 January 1929
32 Mairead Corrigan Peace 1976 27 January 1944
33 Joshua Lederberg Medicine 1958 23 May 1925
33 Betty Williams Peace 1976 22 May 1943
33 Rigoberta Menchú Tum Peace 1992 9 January 1959
33 Brian D. Josephson Physics 1973 4 January 1940

The oldest Nobel Laureates at the time of the award, 10 December each year.
Age Name Category/Year Date of birth
90 Leonid Hurwicz Economics 2007 21 August 1917
88 Raymond Davis Jr. Physics 2002 14 October 1914
88 Doris Lessing Literature 2007 22 October 1919
87 Yoichiro Nambu Physics 2008 18 January 1921
87 Vitaly L. Ginzburg Physics 2003 4 October 1916
87 Peyton Rous Medicine 1966 5 October 1879
87 Joseph Rotblat Peace 1995 4 November 1908
87 Karl von Frisch Medicine 1973 20 November 1886
85 Ferdinand Buisson Peace 1927 20 December 1841
85 John B. Fenn Chemistry 2002 15 June 1917
85 Theodor Mommsen Literature 1902 30 November 1817

Youngest Nobel Laureates in their respective Nobel Prize areas
Category Name
Year of Award
Age of
Nobel Laureate
Physics William Lawrence Bragg
1915
25
Chemistry Frédéric Joliot
1935
35
Physiology or Medicine Frederick Banting
1923
32
Literature Rudyard Kipling
1907
42
Peace Mairead Corrigan
1976
32
Economics Kenneth J. Arrow
1972
51

Oldest Nobel Laureates in their respective Nobel Prize areas
Category Name
Year of Award
Age of
Nobel Laureate
Physics Raymond Davis Jr.
2002
88
Chemistry John B. Fenn
2002
85
Physiology or Medicine Peyton Rous
1966
87
Literature Doris Lessing
2007
88
Peace Joseph Rotblat
1995
87
Economics Leonid Hurwicz
2007
90

How many have been awarded the Nobel Prize since 1901 up to the present?

A total of 809 Nobel Laureates have been awarded since 1901, comprising 789 individuals and 20 organizations. Below is a breakdown:
Category No. of Nobel Laureates
Physics 183 persons
Chemistry 153 persons
Medicine 192 persons
Literature 105 persons
Peace 96 persons
  20 organizations
Economics 62 persons
   
Total 811*
* Two Nobel Laureates were awarded in two different categories (Marie Curie and Linus Pauling); the actual figure is, therefore, 789 persons plus 20 organizations or a total 809. Four other Nobel Laureates, both persons and organizations, received the Nobel Prize more than once in respective categories. See following question for details.

Which person or organization has received the Nobel Prize more than once?

Marie Curie received the 1903 Nobel Prize in Physics, and the 1911 Nobel Prize in Chemistry;
John Bardeen received the 1956 and the 1972 Nobel Prize in Physics;
Frederick Sanger received the 1958 and the 1980 Nobel Prize in Chemistry;
Comité International de la Croix Rouge received the 1917, 1944 and 1963 Nobel Peace Prize;
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees received the 1954 and the 1981 Nobel Peace Prize;
Linus Pauling received the 1954 Nobel Prize in Chemistry and the 1962 Nobel Peace Prize.

Who is the only person to have been awarded two unshared Nobel Prizes?

Linus Pauling was awarded the 1954 Nobel Prize in Chemistry and the 1962 Nobel Peace Prize.

Has the Nobel Prize been given to more than one member of the same family?

Father and Son:
William BraggLawrence Bragg
Niels BohrAage N. Bohr
Hans von Euler-ChelpinUlf von Euler
Arthur KornbergRoger D. Kornberg
Manne SiegbahnKai M. Siegbahn
J. J. ThomsonGeorge Paget Thomson

Father and Daughter:
Pierre CurieIrène Joliot-Curie

Mother and Daughter:
Marie CurieIrène Joliot-Curie

Married Couples:
Marie CuriePierre Curie
Irène Joliot-CurieFrédéric Joliot
Gerty CoriCarl Cori

Two Laureates of The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel have family members who have been awarded a Nobel Prize; Gunnar Myrdal, the husband of Alva Myrdal, and Jan Tinbergen, the brother of Nikolaas Tinbergen.

Has anyone ever declined the Nobel Prize? Why?

Six Nobel Laureates have declined the Prize:
Richard Kuhn, the 1938 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. He was "caused by the authorities of his country to decline the award but later received the diploma and the medal";
Adolf Butenandt, the 1939 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, “Caused by the authorities of his country to decline the award but later received the diploma and the medal”;
Gerhard Domagk, the 1939 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, “Caused by the authorities of his country to decline the award but later received the diploma and the medal”;
Boris Pasternak, the 1958 Nobel Prize in Literature, "Accepted first, later caused by the authorities of his country to decline the Prize";
Jean Paul Sartre, the 1964 Nobel Prize in Literature, declined the Prize;
Le Duc Tho, the 1973 Nobel Peace Prize, declined the Prize.

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