Alfred Nobel’s life and also work

Born in Stockholm

On October 21, 1833 a baby young was born to a family in Stockholm, Sweden that was to end up being a famous scientist, inventor, businessman and founder the the Nobel Prizes. His father to be Immanuel Nobel and also his mom was Andriette Ahlsell Nobel. They called their kid Alfred.

You are watching: Which invention allowed the greatest personal freedom of travel?

Alfred’s father was an engineer and also inventor. He developed bridges and also buildings and also experimented with various ways the blasting rocks.

The very same year the Alfred was born, his father’s organization suffered losses and also had to it is in closed. In 1837, Immanuel Nobel decided to shot his organization somewhere else and also left for Finland and also Russia. Alfred’s mother was left in Stockholm come take care of the family. In ~ this time, Alfred had actually two larger brothers, Robert born in 1829, and also Ludvig born in 1831.

Alfred’s birth place in Stockholm, Sweden. Image provided by the Nobel Foundation.

Andriette Nobel, who came from a affluent family, began a grocery store. The store had actually a modest revenue that assisted in supporting the family.


Immanuel Nobel Andriette Nobel

The family members moves come Russia

After a time, Immanuel Nobel’s service in St. Petersburg, Russia started doing well. He had actually opened a mechanically workshop that provided equipment because that the Russian army. He likewise made the Russian Tsar and his generals think that sea mines might be used to stop enemy ships from entering and also attacking St. Petersburg. The mines quit the British royal Navy indigenous moving into firing range of St. Petersburg during the Crimean war in 1853-1856.

With his success in Russia, Immanuel was now able to move his family to St. Petersburg in 1842. By 1843, one more boy was born right into the family, Emil. The 4 Nobel brothers were given first class education with the help of exclusive tutors. Your lessons consisted of natural sciences, languages and also literature. In ~ the age of 17, Alfred can speak and also write in Swedish, Russian, French, English and also German.


A paint of Immanuel Nobel demonstrating his naval or sea mines to the Tsar the Russia.

Alfred travel abroad

Alfred was many interested in literature, chemistry and also physics. His father want his young to monitor in his footsteps and also was no pleased through Alfred’s attention in poetry. He determined to send the young man abroad come study and become a chemistry engineer.


Young Alfred Nobel.

In Paris, Alfred operated in the personal laboratory that Professor T. J. Pelouze, a well known chemist. There he met a young Italian chemist, Ascanio Sobrero. Three years earlier, Sobrero had actually invented nitroglycerine, a extremely explosive liquid. The was taken into consideration too attention to be of valuable use.

Alfred became very interested in nitroglycerine and also how it might be used in construction work. Once he returned back to Russia after ~ his studies, that worked along with his father to develop nitroglycerine as a commercially and also technically helpful explosive.

Moving ago to Sweden

After the Crimean battle ended, the service of Alfred’s dad went badly and he decided to move earlier to Sweden. Alfred’s elder brother Robert and Ludvig remained in Russia to shot and save what to be left of the family business. They became successful and also went top top to develop the oil industry in the southern component of Russia.

After the Nobel family’s go back to Sweden in 1863, Alfred concentrated on occurring nitroglycerine as an explosive. Sadly, this experiments result in crashes that eliminated several people, including Alfred’s younger brother, Emil. The government made decision to half these experiments within the Stockholm city limits.

Barge ~ above Lake Mälaren, Sweden wherein Alfred Nobel later on did his experiments.

Alfred walk not offer up and moved his experiment to a barge or flat bottom watercraft on Lake Mälaren. In 1864, he was able to begin mass production of nitroglycerine yet he did not stop experimenting with various additives to make the production much safer.

Alfred invents “dynamite”

Alfred found, with his experiments, that mixing nitroglycerine through a fine sand called kieselguhr would rotate the liquid right into paste which could be shaped into rods. This rods could then be put into drilling holes. The invention was make in 1866. Alfred acquired a patent or legal right of ownership on this material the following year. He named it “dynamite.” He likewise invented a detonator or blasting cap which can be collection off by light a fuse.

These inventions were made at a time as soon as the diamond drilling crown and also pneumatic drill came into general use. Together, these inventions helped reduce the price of many building work like drilling tunnels, blasting rocks, building bridges, etc.

Factories in various places

Dynamite and also detonating cap were lot in need in the construction industry. Because of this, Alfred to be able to put up factories in 90 different places. He resided in Paris but often travel to his factory in much more than 20 countries. He to be once described as “Europe’s richest vagabond.” He worked intensively in Stockholm (Sweden), Hamburg (Germany), Ardeer (Scotland), Paris and also Sevran (France), Karlskoga (Sweden) and also San Remo (Italy). He likewise experimented in making synthetic rubber and leather and artificial silk. By the moment of his fatality in 1896 he had 355 patents.

Meets Bertha von Suttner

Alfred had no household of his own. One day, he announced in the papers for a secretary. An Austrian lady, Bertha Kinsky von Chinic und Tettau gained the job. After functioning for a quick time, she moved back to Austria to marry count Arthur von Suttner.

Alfred and also Bertha von Suttner remained friends and exchanged letters with the years. She later on became really active in the peace movement. She created the famous book “Lay down Your Arms.” when Alfred Nobel later wrote his will certainly to establish the Nobel Prizes, he had a prize for persons or establishments who supported peace.

Bertha von Suttner. Photo from the Nobel foundation archive.

Alfred died in san Remo, Italy on December 10, 1896. In his critical will and also testament, he composed that much of his fortune was to be offered to give prizes to those who have done their finest for humanity in the ar of physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature and also peace.

Not everybody to be pleased with this. His will certainly was protest by his relatives and also questioned by authorities in various countries. That took 4 years because that his executors to to convince all parties to monitor Alfred’s wishes.

In 1901, the first Nobel Prizes in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine and also Literature were an initial awarded in Stockholm, Sweden and also the tranquility Prize in Kristiania (now Oslo), Norway.


The very first Nobel Prize award Ceremony in 1901 at the royal Academy the Music in Stockholm.

Notes: 1. One inventor is someone who provides or produces things and objects for the very first time with the usage of the imagination or the ingenious thinking and also experiment.

2. Crimean war (1853-1856) – War in between Russia and Turkey ~ Russia lived in territories the were in Turkey’s regulate in the Crimea. Britain, France, and also Sardinia later joined Turkey against the Russians.

3. Pneumatic drill – a drill that works v the assist of waiting pressure.

This record was compiled by the editors at

See more: Which American Personally Took Part In The Invasion Of Cuba ?

To point out this ar MLA style: Alfred Nobel’s life and also work. Nobel compensation Outreach ab 2021. Tue. 26 Oct 2021.

Thirteen laureates to be awarded a Nobel prize in 2021, for accomplishments that have actually conferred the greatest advantage to humankind.Their work and discoveries selection from the earth’s climate and also our sense of touch to efforts to safeguard liberty of expression.See them every presented here.