Pierre and Marie Curie awarded the Nobel Prize

The Nobel Prize for physics was awarded to Pierre and Marie Curie and fellow physicist Henri Becquerel on December 10, 1903, for their work with radioactivity. Marie Curie, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, had coined the term radioactivity. Working together after their marriage in 1895, the Curies made several significant discoveries. They showed that the elements uranium and thorium emitted radiation that Becquerel had detected in uranium and had found to be similar to X-rays. They also found that radioactivity caused particles to be electrically charged, and they discovered two new elements, polonium and radium. Mr. and Mrs. Curie are shown here with their daughter Irène, later a famed scientist in her own right who was awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry for the synthesis of new radioactive elements.

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