The Nobel Prize is bestowed annually in categories as selected by Swedish and Norwegian committees in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. The 1895 will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Pieter Zeeman died on this day in 1943. He was a Dutch physicist who shared the 1902 Nobel Prize in Physics with Hendrik Lorentz for his discovery of the Zeeman effect.
Hermann Emil Louis Fischer was born on this day in 1852. He was a German chemist and 1902 recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. He also discovered the Fischer esterification. He developed the Fischer projection, a symbolic way of drawing asymmetric carbon atoms.
Max Theodor Felix von Laue was born on this date in 1879. He was a German physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1914 for his discovery of the diffraction of X-rays by crystals. In addition to his scientific endeavors with contributions in optics, crystallography, quantum theory, superconductivity, and the theory of relativity, he had a number of administrative positions which advanced and guided German scientific research and development during four decades. A strong objector to National Socialism, he was instrumental in re-establishing and organizing German science after World War II.
William Parry Murphy of Stoughton, Wisconsin died on this date in 1987. He was an American physician who shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1934 with George Richards Minot and George Hoyt Whipple for their combined work in devising and treating macrocytic anemia (specifically, pernicious anemia). He was educated at the public schools of Wisconsin and Oregon. He completed his A.B. degree in 1914 from the University of Oregon. He completed his M.D. in 1922 from Harvard Medical School. In 1924, Murphy bled dogs to make them anemic (work inspired by war injury work), and then fed them various substances to gauge their improvement. He discovered that ingesting large amounts of liver seemed to restore anemia more quickly of all foods. Minot and Whipple then set about to chemically isolate the curative substance. These investigations showed that iron in the liver was responsible for curing anemia from bleeding, but meanwhile liver had been tried on people with pernicious anemia and some effect as seen there, also. The active ingredient in this case, found serendipitously, was not iron, but rather a water-soluble extract containing a new substance. From this extract, chemists were ultimately were able to isolate vitamin B12 from the liver. Even before the vitamin had been completely characterized, the knowledge that raw liver and its extracts treated pernicious anemia (previously a terminal disease) was a major advance in medicine. Murphy married Pearl Harriett Adams on September 10, 1919. They had a son, Dr. William P. Murphy Jr., and a daughter, Priscilla Adams.
Sir Cyril Norman Hinshelwood OM PRS died on this date in 1967. He was an English physical chemist. During the First World War, Hinshelwood was a chemist in an explosives factory. He was a tutor at Trinity College, Oxford from 1921 to 1937 and was Dr Lee’s Professor of Chemistry at the University of Oxford from 1937. He served on several Advisory Councils on scientific matters to the British Government. He was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 1929, serving as President from 1955 to 1960. He was knighted in 1948 and appointed to the Order of Merit in 1960. His early studies of molecular kinetics led to the publication of Thermodynamics for Students of Chemistry and The Kinetics of Chemical Change in 1926. With Harold Warris Thompson he studied the explosive reaction of Hydrogen and Oxygen and described the phenomenon of chain reaction. His subsequent work on chemical changes in the bacterial cell proved to be of great importance in later research work on antibiotics and therapeutic agents, and his book, The Chemical Kinetics of the Bacterial Cell was published in 1946, followed by Growth, Function and Regulation in Bacterial Cells in 1966. In 1951 he published The Structure of Physical Chemistry. It was republished as an Oxford Classic Texts in the Physical Sciences by Oxford University Press in 2005. With Nikolay Semenov of the USSR, Hinshelwood was jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1956 for his researches into the mechanism of chemical reactions. The Langmuir-Hinshelwood process in heterogeneous catalysis, in which the adsorption of the reactants on the surface is the rate-limiting step, is named after him. Hinshelwood was President of the Chemical Society, Royal Society, Classical Association and the Faraday Society, and gained many awards and honorary degrees.
Ivan “Ivo” Andrić was born on this date in 1892. He was a Serbian and Yugoslav novelist, short story writer, and the 1961 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature. His writings dealt mainly with life in his native Bosnia under the Ottoman Empire.