THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.

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Lot 46
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.
PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.

Sold for US$ 545,000 inc. premium
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.
PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
[MINOT, GEORGE. 1885-1950.] Nobel medal, struck in 23 carat gold, approx. 200 g, 67 mm in diameter. Designed by Erik Lundberg and manufactured by the Kungliga Mynt och Justeringsverkey (Swedish Royal Mint). Obverse with bust of Alfred Nobel facing left, "ALFR. / NOBEL" to left of bust, "NAT. / MDCCC / XXXIII / OB. / MDCCC / XCVI" to right of bust, signed "E. LINDBERG" at the lower left edge. Reverse features allegorical vignette of the Genius of Medicine holding an open book in her lap, and collecting the water pouring out from a rock in order to quench a sick girl's thirst. Legend above vignette reads "INVENTAS VITAM IUVAT EX COLUISSE PER ARTES", plaque below vignette reads "GEORGE MINOT / MCMXXXIV", motto to either side of plaque reads "REG. UNIVERSITAS" "MED. CHIR. CAROL." Signed "E. LINDBERG" to lower right of vignette. Housed in the original diced maroon morocco case, decorated in gilt and lined in velvet and satin.
WITH:
1. Nobel Prize Diploma, two vellum leaves (each 341 x 242 mm) with calligraphic inscriptions in Swedish in blue, red & gold, including William P. Murphy & George H. Whipple's names on first leaf, and giving George R. Minot's citation dated October 25, 1934 on second leaf, second leaf signed by 23 members of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, both leaves with decorative cartouches in blue, gray, and gilt, second leaf with gilt vignette signed by Swedish artist Jerk Wermäster, featuring a staff of Asclepius (the Greek God of Medicine & Healing), a bowl of Hygieia (the Greek goddess of hygeine, and daughter of Asclepius), and a cockerel (sacred bird to Asclepius, often sacrificed at his altar). Both leaves mounted as linings in a blue morocco portfolio ruled in gilt (363 x 266 mm), upper cover with central wreath device encircling monogram "GRM" [George Richards Minot], lower cover with gilt staff of Asclepius and small blind-stamp of Royal Swedish bookbinder Gustaf Hedberg.
2. Original Radiogram sent to George Minot from Gunnar Holmgren, Rector of the Caroline Institute, informing him of his win. Stamped with date 1934, Oct 26 AM 6:53.
3. Typed Letter Signed ("Gunnar Holmgren,") 1 p, folio, Stockholm, Sweden, Oct[ober] 26, 1934, on blind-stamped letterhead of the Rektor of the Caroline Institute, being the official letter informing George R. Minot of the committee's decision to award him the Nobel prize.
4. George R. Minot & William P. Murphy, "Treatment of Pernicious Anemia by a Special Diet." Offprint from The Journal of the American Medical Association, Aug. 14, 1926, vol 87, pp 470-476.
5. Typed Letter Signed ("F.G. Banting,") 2 pp, rectos only, folio, Toronto, Canada, November 2nd, 1934, congratulating Minot on his Nobel prize win, giving him advice on writing his speech, and on obtaining insulin in Sweden, on letterhead of the University of Toronto, Department of Medical Research, Banting Institute. Matted, framed, and glazed.
6. Carbon copy of speech given by Minot to Nobel committee upon acceptance of his prize. 2 pp, rectos only, with 4 line notation in pencil to p 1 by Minot.
7. Gelatin silver print photograph of 1934 Nobel prize winners seated at award ceremony.
8. H. Schuck & R. Solman, Alfred Nobel. London: William Heinemann Ltd, 1939. Limited edition, number 51 of 100 numbered copies. Presentation inscription to flyleaf to George Minot from the Nobel Foundation, dated Dec[ember] 12th, 1934.

GEORGE MINOT'S 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR HIS LIFE-SAVING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA, a disease which was invariably fatal until Minot described the effective treatment. A video explaining the history of this medal can be viewed on our website at www.bonhams.com/video/19794/

The Nobel Prize represents the summit of human achievement. Established by Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel in 1895 in his will, the prizes in the initial five categories of Physiology or Medicine, Physics, Chemistry, Literature and Peace were first instituted in 1901, with the Nobel Peace Prize being presented in Oslo, and the other categories in Stockholm. Each category is awarded by a different body, with the prize in Medicine or Physiology being awarded by the Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institute, the prizes in Physics, Chemistry and Economics (the related Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences, established in 1968 by the Swedish Central Bank in memory of Alfred Nobel) by the Royal Swedish Academy, the prize in Literature by the Swedish Academy and the Peace Prize by the Norwegian Nobel Committee. Awarded each year on December 10th, each laureate is presented with a Nobel Medal engraved with their name, a Nobel diploma custom designed by the leading Swedish and Norwegian artists and calligraphers, and an official letter from King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, confirming their cash award amount (which varies, but is usually set at 8 million Swedish kronor per full prize). Nobel medals after 1980 have been minted in 18 carat gold and plated in 24 carat gold, but prior to this, as is the case with the present medal, they were minted in solid 23 carat gold, weighing in at about 200 grams. The medals in Physiology or Medicine, Chemistry and Physics all carry on the obverse the same design, being a profile bust of Alfred Nobel, while each category has its own specific design on the reverse.

George Richards Minot (1885-1950), the son of a physician, was a Harvard graduate, completing medical school there in 1912. He then trained at Massachusetts General Hospital and Johns Hopkins before being appointed Assistant in Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in 1915. Seven years later, he was appointed Physician-in-Chief of the Collis B. Huntington Memorial Hospital of Harvard University, before being elected Professor of Medicine at Harvard in 1928.

Minot published numerous papers on topics ranging from blood disorders, to arthritis, cancer, and dietary deficiencies (in particular vitamin B deficiency) and researched many others such as blood transfusions, coagulation of the blood, and disorders of the lymphatic tissues, but his name will always be best known for his pioneering work in pernicious anemia. Minot's interest in this area began as early as 1914, shortly after completing medical school, and much of his early research related to the topic. However, it was not until later, in 1926 that he and fellow Harvard physician William P. Murphy discovered the impressive work of George Hoyt Whipple on the treatment of anemia in dogs. Later that year, Minot and Murphy described the effective treatment of pernicious anemia by means of a diet of liver in their paper "Treatment of Pernicious Anemia by a Special Diet." Minot, Murphy, and Whipple went on to be awarded the 1934 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for this pioneering work. Other than the Nobel Prize, one of the highest honors conferred, Minot was also awarded the Cameron Prize in Practical Therapeutics (jointly with Murphy), the John Scott Medal of the City of Philadelphia, and the Popular Science Monthly Gold Medal and Annual Award for 1930 (jointly with Whipple). He was also a fellow or member of numerous medical organizations, both in the US and internationally.

It is interesting to note that were it not for the discoveries of two previous Nobelists, Frederick Banting (1891-1941) and John James Rickard Macleod (1876-1935) it is very likely that Minot would not have lived long enough to win his own prize. Minot suffered from diabetes mellitus, which was a fatal disease for most of Minot's life. Banting and Macleod's discovery of insulin, for which they were jointly awarded the 1923 Nobel in Physiology or Medicine, saved Minot's life, allowing him to go on to complete his work on pernicious anemia, savings countless lives himself. Included in the present lot is an excellent letter from Banting to Minot congratulating him on his win, and offering advice on the availability of insulin in Sweden and London.
Contacts
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
THE 1934 NOBEL PRIZE MEDAL FOR PHYSIOLOGY OR MEDICINE.  PRESENTED TO GEORGE MINOT FOR HIS PIONEERING WORK ON PERNICIOUS ANEMIA.
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