Marie Curie (birth name Maria Sklodowska) was born on the 7th of November 1867 in Warsaw, Poland and died on the 4th of July 1934. She was one of the world's most talented and famous physicists and chemists. She was also the first woman professor at the Sorbonne.
Her childhood was marked by the loss of her sister and mother. When she was 24 years old she decided to leave to Paris in order to study science. Her parents were both teachers. She became an important scientist and finally she obtained the French nationality. She was so dedicated to her work that she sometimes forgot to eat and even sleep in order to study more.
Because of the Polish 1863 Uprising against Tsarist Russia, she wasn't allowed to attend a regular university so she had to work as a private tutor. This time she was attending Warsaw's illegal Floating University. Later she attended Sorbonne and studied there mathematics, physics and chemistry.
She got a master's degree in mathematics and a Doctor of Science from Ecole Superieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles de la Ville de Paris.
By the time she reached all that she was the first woman who had ever done it.
She decided to marry Pierre Curie, an instructor at Sorbonne. In 1898 she and her husband announced they discovered the existence of an unknown radioactive substance. The couple also discovered two chemical elements, polonium and radium. In 1903 and 1911 she received the Nobel Awards for Physics and Chemistry. The doctors diagnosed her with depression and a kidney ailment in 1911 one month after receiving the Nobel Prize.
No one except her has ever won two Nobel awards.
In 1906 unfortunately her husband died. Since then she had a married man, physicist Paul Langevin, and was somehow involved in a scandal.
In 1929 she travelled to the United States where she tried to raise funds for research on radium. She was the head of the Pasteur Institute and a radioactivity laboratory created for her by the University of Paris in her late years.
On the 4th of July 1934 she died of aplastic anemia probably due to her exposure to radiation. At first she was buried at the cemetery in Sceaux along her husband, but later the couple was moved to the Pantheon in Paris.
- 1903 Nobel Prize for Physics
- 1903 Davy Medal
- 1904 Matteucci Medal
- 1911 Nobel Prize for Chemistry