• Sweden's news in English

Pomp and ceremony for Nobel winners

TT/The Local · 11 Dec 2007, 11:08

Published: 11 Dec 2007 11:08 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

There was a strong turnout from Sweden's royal family, with King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia joined by their children, Crown Princess Victoria, Princess Madeleine and Prince Carl Philip. The king's sister, Princess Christina, also attended.

Most of this year's prizewinners attended the banquet, with the exceptions of Literature Prize winner Doris Lessing and Economics Prize winner Leonid Hurwic, who were absent due to old age and illness. A second banquet for the Peace Prize winners was held as usual in Oslo.

The event's eighty most prominent guests sat at the 25-metre top table in the middle of the Blue Hall, the City Hall's banqueting hall. The table was decorated with flowers and leaves shaped as cakes and puddings, designed to resemble the cake party thrown by Pippi Longstocking, whose creator Astrid Lindgren was born 100 years ago this year.

Guests took their seats by 7pm, in time to watch the prizewinners and the royal family walk down the steps into the hall.

The 3-and-a-half hour dinner saw Crown Princess Victoria conversing with French Physics Prize winner Albert Fert. Fert's wife, Marie-José, was seated next to the king. Queen Silvia, as usual, sat next to Marcus Storch, chairman of the Nobel Foundation.

Princess Madeleine sat between Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and Peter Grünberg, who shared the Physics Prize with Fert.

For many of the people watching the party on television - last year saw 1.3 million people in Sweden tune in - the focus was less on academic achievement and more on the dresses, particularly those of the royal ladies.

Queen Silvia wore a striking red pleated gown by Japanese designer Gnyuki Torimaru, set off with Queen Sofia´s diamond tiara and a diamond cross from the Karl XIV Johan collection.

Crown Princess Victoria wore a black satin skirt with an understated chiffon top, created by Swede Pär Engsheden. She also wore the “Karl Johan Tiara" with six diamond bows. Princess Madeleine bordeaux-red velvet gown was designed by Swede Linda Nurk, which she accompanied with a pear-shaped pearl earrings and a tiara.

For the men, the dress code was more simple: white tie and tails, although the king, Prince Carl Philip and some other male guests came adorned in almost enough orders of chivalry to compete for attention with the tiaras of the ladies.

The dinner guests and the TV audience were entertained by a performance by 40 dancers from the Royal Swedish Ballet.

The menu consisted of a Lobster aspic, followed by a main course of 'young cockerel with cockerel sausage, accompanied by almond potato and celery root terrine.' This was wrapped up with a 'raspberry and blackcurrant parfait on beds of pistachio, with vanilla ice cream'.

Before the guest set off for the dance floor, the laureates addressed the hall. For most, it was an opportunity to thank past mentors and family. Albert Fert also thanked Ingmar Bergman; he said the "inaccessibility" of Bergman's genius was one reason for him abandoning film-making at university and going into physics instead.

Story continues below…

Chemistry Prize winner Gerhard Ertl thanked colleagues from throughout his long career, and quoted Goethe, saying "There is no greater joy than studying nature."

Medicine Prize Winner Oliver Smithies thanked teachers, including his mathematics teacher at grammar school in Yorkshire, his flying instructor and his Oxford tutor.

Economics Prize Winner Eric S. Maskin thanked the Nobel Foundation itself for giving his research into mechanism design "notoriety worthy of an Elvis Presley."

"Isn't it remarkable that, for one week a year, that kind of attention is focused not just on economics, but on physics, chemistry, medicine, and literature," Maskin said.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Today's headlines
Creepy clown messes with the wrong dog walker in Sweden
Not the clown in the story. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

A dog helped its owner fight off a creepy clown chasing the pair in southern Sweden.

A million Swedes are digitally excluded: report
How should Sweden bridge the digital divide? Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Tech-savvy Swedes? Perhaps not. A new study suggests that at least a million of its residents feel the pain of the digital divide.

Malmö's 19th Swedish title sets Champions hopes alight
Malmö fans celebrating after the match. Photo: Björn Lindgren/TT

Malmö FF have their eyes set on the Champions League after winning the Swedish league for the 19th time.

What's on in Sweden
Five great autumn events in Sweden this week
Jazz in northern Sweden. Photo: Umeå Jazz Festival

Food, music, movies and more food. What better way of helping yourself forget that the days are getting shorter and colder?

Here's how slow Sweden's high-speed trains are getting
A Swedish SJX2000 high speed train. Photo: Tomas Oneborg/SvD/TT

The high-speed rail journey between the three biggest Swedish cities is about to get longer.

The Local List
12 Swedish words with just awesome literal translations
A filthy-minded lobster, i.e. a snuskhummer. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB scanpix/TT

One of our favourite things about the Swedish language is its wonderful compound words, which range from being utterly bizarre to making perfect sense.

US election
Donald Trump won't get new Ericsson head's vote
Trump pictured at a campaign rally in Florida. Photo: Evan Vucci/AP

The new Swedish-American boss of telecoms giant Ericsson has revealed he will not vote for the Republican nominee in the forthcoming US presidential election.

Swedes named fourth most gender equal in the world
A file photo of men and women pushing prams in Stockholm. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

Sweden has closed 81 percent of its overall gender gap according to the World Economic Forum.

Sweden: Russian warships in the Baltic 'worrying'
Swedish Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist. Photo: Vilhelm Stokstad/TT

Two Russian warships equipped with long-range missiles have entered the Baltic Sea after passing Denmark.

Why businesses are worried about Sweden's drone ban
A drone filming in Stockholm. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

The Local investigates what Sweden's new drone ban could mean for businesses in the country.

Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
People-watching: October 26th
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast
Is Game of Thrones coming to Sweden?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available