Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite and other explosives, spent his enormous fortune, earned on his 365 patents, to found the Nobel Prize.
The fourth of eight children of Immanuel and Carolina Nobel, Alfred Bernhard Nobel was born on October 21, 1833 in the Swedish city of Stockholm. As a child, he was often sick, but always showed a keen interest in the world around him. Despite the fact that Nobel’s father was an experienced engineer and an exceptional inventor, he did not abandon attempts to found a profitable business in Sweden. When Alfred was 4 years old, his father moved to Russia, to St. Petersburg, to lead the production of explosives. In 1842 the family moved to him. In Russia, rich parents hire Alfred private teachers. He easily learns chemistry and speaks fluent Swedish, in English, French, German and Russian.
Invention and heritage
At 18, Alfred left Russia. After spending a year in Paris, where he continues to study chemistry, Nobel moved to the United States. Five years later, Alfred returned to Russia, where he began working at his father’s factory, engaged in the production of military equipment for the Crimean War. In 1859, at the very end of the war, the enterprise becomes bankrupt. The family moves back to Sweden, where soon Alfred begins his experiments with explosives. In 1864, when Alfred was 29, a powerful explosion took place at a family factory in Sweden, killing five people, among them Alfred’s younger brother Emil. Being under the strong impression of the tragedy, Nobel begins to invent a safer explosive. And in 1867 he patented a mixture of nitroglycerin and absorbent, which he calls “dynamite”.
In 1888, Alfred’s brother Ludwig died in France. But, because of a ridiculous mistake, the newspapers have an obituary on the death of Alfred himself, in which the creation of dynamite is sharply condemned. Outraged by such an incident and disappointed in the hopes of leaving a good memory of himself, Nobel abandons his part of the family status in favor of creating a Nobel Prize, designed to reward scientists of both sexes for outstanding achievements in physics, chemistry, medicine and literature, and for work in the field achieve peace.
December 10, 1896 in the city of San Remo, Nobel dies from the blow that hit him. After paying taxes and deducting private hereditary shares from his estate, 31,225,000 Swedish kroner goes to the Nobel prize fund.
“On some good intentions, the world can not be built.”