The Prestigious Nobel Day in Sweden

Europe - Editor - 03 December 2007

The Prestigious Nobel Day in Sweden

Each year Stockholm, the beautiful capital of Sweden, plays host to one of the most spectacular and esteemed formal occasions in the world – Nobel Day. This fantastic annual event has been held on December 10 since 1901 and is a memorable day for all involved.

Nobel Day in Sweden is a fitting climax to a week of speeches, receptions and conferences. For the Nobel Laureates, it is one of the most unforgettable days of their lives wherein all their hard work is rewarded by a medal from the Swedish King and a sizable monetary prize. This massive prize-giving ceremony is followed by a gala banquet for 1 300 people – the true highlight of the event for most of the people involved. The prizes are awarded at the Stockholm Concert Hall during the afternoon, after which guests move to the Stockholm City Hall for the gala dinner. Dress is very formal, with the men donning white ties and black tails for the event. The pursuit of this mandatory but scarce ‘penguin suit’ – as it is affectionately known – is often the focus of many humorous tales at the banquet tables in the evening. Woman must wear a floor length gown that is often combined with long, silky gloves and sparkling jewelry.

This intimate and magnificent event is held on the anniversary of Alfred Nobel’s death. Born in Stockholm in 1833, Nobel spent many years tirelessly inventing and working towards the greater good of mankind. He is marked as being the inventor of dynamite, which has since played a major role in the industrial development of the world. Shortly after his death in 1896, the annual Nobel Prize Ceremony was instituted according to his wishes. It was Nobel who stipulated in his will that prizes be awarded to those individuals who were internationally recognized for their contribution in the fields of Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine, Literature and Peace. In 1969 the additional field of Economic Sciences was created in memory of Alfred Nobel. The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded on the same day in Oslo (Norway) by the Norwegian parliament. The flowers used to decorate the venues are donated by the city of San Remo in Italy every year since this is where Alfred Nobel died more than a century ago.

The entire event is a truly unforgettable experience. Organized and hosted by the Nobel Foundation, the event is attended by the Swedish Royal Family as well as many members of parliament. Other guests are usually invited by the laureates themselves since each laureate is entitled to bring sixteen guests with them to enjoy the festivities. The guest list also reflects the top of the international and local cultural and scientific community. In exchange for the honor, prizewinners are required to hold a lecture in Stockholm so that the public may benefit from their knowledge and experience.


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