måndag 10 december 2007

The Nobel Prize Award Ceremony

Alfred Nobel (1833-1896) was born in Stockholm, Sweden, on October 21, 1833. His family was descended from Olof Rudbeck, the best-known technical genius in Sweden in the 17th century, an era in which Sweden was a great power in northern Europe. Nobel was fluent in several languages, and wrote poetry and drama. Nobel was also very interested in social and peace-related issues, and held views that were considered radical during his time.

On November 27, 1895, Alfred Nobel signed his last will in Paris. When it was opened and read after his death, the will caused a lot of controversy both in Sweden and internationally, as Nobel had left much of his wealth for the establishment of a prize! His family opposed the establishment of the Nobel Prize, and the prize awarders he named refused to do what he had requested in his will. It was five years before the first Nobel Prize could be awarded in 1901.

Every year since 1901 the Nobel Prize has been awarded for achievements in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature and for peace. The Nobel Prize is an international award administered by the Nobel Foundation in Stockholm, Sweden. In 1968, Sveriges Riksbank established The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, founder of the Nobel Prize. Each prize consists of a medal, personal diploma, and a cash award. The Nobel Prize Award Ceremony is traditionally held on 10 December, the anniversary of Alfred Nobel's death.

The Nobel Prizes in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine and Literature as well as the Economics Prize are awarded at the Stockholm Concert Hall in Sweden.

The Nobel Peace Prize Award Ceremony takes place in the Oslo City Hall, Norway. Why in Oslo, when all the other Nobel Prizes are awarded in Stockholm, Sweden? You will find the answer in the will of Alfred Nobel, in which he stated that the Nobel Peace Prize is to be awarded by a Committee of five persons elected by the Norwegian Storting or parliament.

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