FACTBOX: Nobel: the prizes and the man

Wed Oct 1, 2008 11:32am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - Swedish businessman and dynamite inventor Alfred Nobel set up a number of prizes awarded each year in his name in his will, which was signed in 1895.

The following are some facts about the man and the prizes:

* THE PRIZES:

-- Nobel said in his will the prizes should be given to people "who, during the preceding year, shall have conferred the greatest benefit on mankind."

-- He ordered that most of his estate of 31 million Swedish crowns at the time should be converted into a fund and invested in safe securities.

-- The first prizes were awarded in 1901, five years after Nobel's death in San Remo, Italy.

-- His will gave five categories for prizes: physics, chemistry, medicine or physiology, literature and peace. A sixth prize, the Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, was established in 1968.

-- The winners get 10 million Swedish crowns ($1.45 million), either individually or shared, though no more than three people are allowed to share.

* THE MAN:   Continued...