Showing posts with label Pierre Curie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pierre Curie. Show all posts

May 11, 2012

Madame Curie Facts

Marie Curie (1867-1934) was an expert in physics, chemistry and radioactivity. She was also the first woman to win a Nobel Prize and then was awarded a second.

Marie Salomea Sklodowska was born in Warsaw Poland. Her father was a math and physics teacher and atheist. Her mother was a teacher, operated a boarding school, and was Catholic. Four-year-old Marie taught herself how to read Russian and French and was known to help her four brothers and sisters with their math homework. It was also at age four that she began demonstrate her incredible memory.

As a teenager, Marie was anxious to attend college, but her family couldn’t afford it so she spent five grueling years earning money as a governess. In 1891 she headed for the Sorbonne in Paris. There, she met future husband Pierre Curie. While there, she discovered the radioactive elements radium and polonium (She named it after her native Poland). Later, she became the first woman professor at the Sorbonne.

In her thirties, Marie worked closely with her husband, and together they devised the science of radioactivity (she named the term radioactivity), for which they were awarded a Nobel Prize in physics. They had two children Irene and Eve. After Pierre’s death in 1906, Marie continued her work, winning her second Nobel, in chemistry at age 44.

It has been determined that Marie contracted aplastic anemia from all of her time spent with radiation which, at that point, had no dangers associated with it. She died from it in 1934.