Welcome to our collection of quotes (with shareable picture quotes) by Marie Curie. We hope you enjoy pondering them and that you will share them widely.
Marie Salomea Skłodowska Curie ( KEWR-ee; French: [kyʁi]; Polish: [kʲiˈri]), born Maria Salomea Skłodowska (Polish: [ˈmarja salɔˈmɛa skwɔˈdɔfska]; 7 November 1867 – 4 July 1934), was a Polish and naturalized-French physicist and chemist who conducted pioneering research on radioactivity. As the first of the Curie family legacy of five Nobel Prizes, she was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the first person and the only woman to win the Nobel Prize twice, and the only person to win the Nobel Prize in two scientific fields. She was the first woman to become a professor at the University of Paris in 1906.
She was born in Warsaw, in what was then the Kingdom of Poland, part of the Russian Empire. She studied at Warsaw's clandestine Flying University and began her practical scientific training in Warsaw. In 1891, aged 24, she followed her elder sister Bronisława to study in Paris, where she earned her higher degrees and conducted her subsequent scientific work. In 1895 she married the French physicist Pierre Curie, and she shared the 1903 Nobel Prize in Physics with him and with the physicist Henri Becquerel for their pioneering work developing the theory of "radioactivity"—a term she coined. In 1906 Pierre Curie died in a Paris street accident. Marie won the 1911 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her discovery of the elements polonium and radium, using techniques she invented for isolating radioactive isotopes.
Under her direction, the world's first studies were conducted into the treatment of neoplasms by the use of radioactive isotopes. In 1920 she founded the Curie Institute in Paris, and in 1932 the Curie Institute in Warsaw; both remain major centres of medical research. During World War I she developed mobile radiography units to provide X-ray services to field hospitals. While a French citizen, Marie Skłodowska Curie, who used both surnames, never lost her sense of Polish identity. She taught her daughters the Polish language and took them on visits to Poland. She named the first chemical element she discovered polonium, after her native country.
Marie Curie died in 1934, aged 66, at the Sancellemoz sanatorium in Passy (Haute-Savoie), France, of aplastic anemia from exposure to radiation in the course of her scientific research and in the course of her radiological work at field hospitals during World War I. In addition to her Nobel Prizes, she has received numerous other honours and tributes; in 1995 she became the first woman to be entombed on her own merits in Paris' Panthéon, and Poland declared 2011 as the Year of Marie Curie during the International Year of Chemistry. She is the subject of numerous biographical works, where she is also known as Madame Curie.
We believe the substance we have extracted from pitchblende contains a metal not yet observed, related to bismuth by its analytical properties. If the existence of this new metal is confirmed we propose to call it polonium, from the name of the original country of one of us.
I shall devote only a few lines to the expression of my belief in the importance of science it is by this daily striving after knowledge that man has raised himself to the unique position he occupies on earth, and that his power and well-being have continually increased.
Just remember you will find that one special love that you know is right but for some reason just doesn't last.
It's always good to marry your best friend.
In science we must be interested in things, not in persons.
I believe international work is a heavy task, but that it is nevertheless indispensable to go through an apprenticeship in it, at the cost of many efforts and also of a real spirit of sacrifice: however imperfect it may be, the work of Geneva has a grandeur that deserves our support.
The sensitive plate, the gas which is ionised, the fluorescent screen, are in reality receivers, into another kind of energy, chemical energy, ionic energy... luminous energy.
Sometimes I had to spend a whole day mixing a boiling mass with a heavy iron rod nearly as large as myself. I would be broken with fatigue at the day's end. Other days, on the contrary, the work would be a most minute and delicate fractional crystallization, in the effort to concentrate the radium.
All that I saw and learned was a new delight to me.
You must never be fearful of what you are doing when it is right.
Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood.
Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.
This means that we have here an entirely separate kind of chemistry for which the current tool we use is the electrometer, not the balance, and which we might well call the chemistry of the imponderable.
The various reasons which we have enumerated lead us to believe that the new radio-active substance contains a new element which we propose to give the name of radium.
The older one gets, the more one feels that the present must be enjoyed; it is a precious gift, comparable to a state of grace.
I have the best husband one could dream of; I could never have imagined finding one like him. He is a true gift of heaven, and the more we live together the more we love each other.
It was like a new world opened to me, the world of science, which I was at last permitted to know in all liberty.
Radium is not to enrich any one. It is an element; it is for all people.
It is my earnest desire that some of you should carry on this scientific work and keep for your ambition the determination to make a permanent contribution to science.
Stability can only be attained by inactive matter.
Life is not easy for any for us.
Life is not easy for any of us, but what of that? We must have perseverance and, above all, confidence in ourselves.
Certein bodies... become luminous when heated. Their luminosity disappears after some time, but the capacity of becoming luminous afresh through heat is restored to them by the action of a spark, and also by the action of radium.
We must believe that we are gifted for something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained.
You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals.
You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end, each of us must work for his own improvement and, at the same time, share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful.
We should not allow it to be believed that all scientific progress can be reduced to mechanisms, machines, gearings, even though such machinery also has its beauty. Neither do I believe that the spirit of adventure runs any risk of disappearing in our world.
In 1906, just as we were definitely giving up the old shed laboratory where we had been so happy, there came the dreadful catastrophe which took my husband away from me and left me alone to bring up our children and, at the same time, to continue our work of research.
During the course of my research, I had had occasion to examine not only simple compounds, salts and oxides, but also a great number of minerals.
Unknown in Paris, I was lost in the great city, but the feeling of living there alone, taking care of myself without any aid, did not at all depress me. If sometimes I felt lonesome, my usual state of mind was one of calm and great moral satisfaction.
I tried out various experiments described in treatises on physics and chemistry, and the results were sometimes unexpected. At times, I would be encouraged by a little unhoped-for success; at others, I would be in the deepest despair because of accidents and failures resulting from my inexperience.
My experiments proved that the radiation of uranium compounds can be measured with precision under determined conditions and that this radiation is an atomic property of the element of uranium.
One never notices what has been done; one can only see what remains to be done.
There are sadistic scientists who hurry to hunt down errors instead of establishing the truth.
Pierre Curie came to see me and showed a simple and sincere sympathy with my student life. Soon he caught the habit of speaking to me of his dream of an existence consecrated entirely to scientific research, and he asked me to share that life.
The death of my husband, coming immediately after the general knowledge of the discoveries with which his name is associated, was felt by the public, and especially by the scientific circles, to be a national misfortune.
All my life through, the new sights of Nature made me rejoice like a child.