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  • Three Alfred Nobel letters to exceed $41,500 at Heritage?
  • Post author
    Paul Fraser
  • AlfredlettersNobelThree

Three Alfred Nobel letters to exceed $41,500 at Heritage?

A collection of three letters by Alfred Nobel written between 1880-1895 is to cross the block at RR Auction later today. Bids stand at $41,296.

Alfred Nobel was a brilliant chemist best known for his invention of Dynamite. Despite being ostensibly a pacificist, he produced hundreds of patents for the armaments industry.

RR Nobel letters
Alfred Nobel is best known for the invention of Dynamite

The death of his brother in 1888 led a French newspaper to publish Alfred's obituary by mistake. It contained the line: "Dr. Alfred Nobel, who became rich by finding ways to kill more people faster than ever before, died yesterday."

Disturbed by this, he formulated the Nobel Prize in a last ditch attempt to ensure that he was not remembered in an entirely negative light.

Today the prize - issued in a number of fields, including the arts and sciences - is considered one of the world's highest honours.

The letters are all addressed to Nobel's lifelong friend and collaborator Alarik Liedbeck and include everything from ideas for improving formulas to concern over his friend's ill health.

In one example, dated 1895, he writes: "I experienced not so tiny a shock when some days ago I had the chance to see [the] letter from Sohlman that you were lying in bed ill in Christiania.

"Although he wrote that you were in full recovery and you had probably already travelled off…You are surely traveling too lightly dressed: even Alarik's health is not made of steel and cannot be cured with ice…."

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  • Post author
    Paul Fraser
  • AlfredlettersNobelThree