READ Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom

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List of notable or famous chemists from the United Kingdom, with bios and photos, including the top chemists born in the United Kingdom and even some popular chemists who immigrated to the United Kingdom. If you're trying to find out the names of famous British chemists then this list is the perfect resource for you. These chemists are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known chemist from the United Kingdom is included when available.

List features Edward Frankland, Norman Haworth and more.

This historic chemists from the United Kingdom list can help answer the questions "Who are some British chemists of note?" and "Who are the most famous chemists from the United Kingdom?" These prominent chemists of the United Kingdom may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected British chemists.

Use this list of renowned British chemists to discover some new chemists that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. (210 items)

1
Margaret Thatcher is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Margaret Thatcher Died at 88 (1925-2013) Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, LG, OM, PC, FRS was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990 and the Leader of the Conservative Party from 1975 to 1990. She was the ...more

2
Michael Faraday is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Michael Faraday Died at 76 (1791-1867) Michael Faraday FRS was an English scientist who contributed to the fields of electromagnetism and electrochemistry. His main discoveries include those of electromagnetic induction, diamagnetism ...more

3
Edward Frankland is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Edward Frankland Died at 74 (1825-1899) Sir Edward Frankland, KCB, FRS was a British chemist. He was an expert in water quality and analysis, and originated the concept of combining power, or valence, in chemistry. He was also one of ...more

4
Ernest Rutherford is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Ernest Rutherford Died at 66 (1871-1937) Ernest Rutherford, 1st Baron Rutherford of Nelson, OM FRS was a New Zealand-born British physicist who became known as the father of nuclear physics. Encyclopædia Britannica considers him ...more

5
Charles Thomson Rees Wilson is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Charles Thomson Rees Wilson Died at 90 (1869-1959) Charles Thomson Rees Wilson, CH, FRS was a Scottish physicist and meteorologist who received the Nobel Prize in physics for his invention of the cloud chamber.

6
Robert Robinson is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Robert Robinson Died at 89 (1886-1975) Sir Robert Robinson, OM, PRS, FRSE was an English organic chemist and Nobel laureate recognised in 1947 for his research on plant dyestuffs and alkaloids. In 1947, he also received the Medal of ...more

7
Norman Haworth is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Norman Haworth Died at 67 (1883-1950) Sir Norman Haworth FRS. was a British chemist best known for his groundbreaking work on ascorbic acid while working at the University of Birmingham. He received the 1937 Nobel Prize in Chemistry ...more

8
Michael Smith is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Michael Smith Died at 68 (1932-2000) Michael Smith CC, OBC, FRS was a British-born Canadian biochemist and businessman. He was the winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work in developing site-directed mutagenesis. ...more

9
Rosalind Franklin is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Rosalind Franklin Died at 38 (1920-1958) Rosalind Elsie Franklin was an English chemist and X-ray crystallographer who made critical contributions to the understanding of the fine molecular structures of DNA, RNA, viruses, coal, and ...more

10
Arthur Harden is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Arthur Harden Died at 75 (1865-1940) Sir Arthur Harden FRS was a British biochemist. He shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1929 with Hans Karl August Simon von Euler-Chelpin for their investigations into the fermentation of ...more

11
James Watt is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
James Watt Died at 83 (1736-1819) James Watt, FRS, FRSE was a Scottish inventor and mechanical engineer whose improvements to the Newcomen steam engine were fundamental to the changes brought by the Industrial Revolution in both ...more

12
Helen Sharman is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Helen Sharman age 54 Helen Patricia Sharman, OBE PhD, is a British chemist who became the first Briton in space and the first woman to visit the Mir space station in 1991. Sharman was born in Grenoside, Sheffield, ...more

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13
Goldsworthy Gurney is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Goldsworthy Gurney Died at 82 (1793-1875) Sir Goldsworthy Gurney was a surgeon, chemist, lecturer, consultant, architect, builder and prototypical British gentleman scientist and inventor, of the Victorian era. Amongst many ...more

14
Neil Bartlett is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Neil Bartlett Died at 76 (1932-2008) |family = Dee Bartlett, Ava Bartlett Neil Bartlett was a chemist who specialized in fluorine and compounds containing fluorine, and became famous for creating the first noble gas compounds. He ...more

15
Alexander R. Todd, Baron Todd is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Alexander R. Todd, Baron Todd Died at 90 (1907-1997) Alexander Robertus Todd, Baron Todd, OM, PRS FRSE was a British biochemist whose research on the structure and synthesis of nucleotides, nucleosides, and nucleotide coenzymes gained him the ...more

16
Henry Cavendish is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Henry Cavendish Died at 79 (1731-1810) Henry Cavendish FRS was a British natural philosopher, scientist, and an important experimental and theoretical chemist and physicist. Cavendish is noted for his discovery of hydrogen or what he ...more

17
A. E. Wilder-Smith is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
A. E. Wilder-Smith Died at 80 (1915-1995) Arthur Ernest Wilder-Smith, FRSC, more commonly known as A. E. Wilder-Smith, was a British organic chemist and young Earth creationist.

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Rodney Robert Porter is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Rodney Robert Porter Died at 68 (1917-1985) Rodney Robert Porter, CH, FRS was an English biochemist and Nobel laureate. Born in Newton-le-Willows, St Helens, Lancashire, England, Rodney Robert Porter received his Bachelors of Sciences ...more

19
Joseph Priestley is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Joseph Priestley Died at 71 (1733-1804) Joseph Priestley FRS was an 18th-century English theologian, Dissenting clergyman, natural philosopher, chemist, educator, and Liberal political theorist who published over 150 works. He is ...more

20
Dorothy Hodgkin is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dorothy Hodgkin Died at 84 (1910-1994) Dorothy Mary Hodgkin, OM, FRS, known professionally as Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin or simply Dorothy Hodgkin, was a British biochemist who developed protein crystallography, for which she was won ...more

21
Joseph Needham is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Joseph Needham Died at 95 (1900-1995) Noel Joseph Terence Montgomery Needham, CH, FRS, FBA, also known as Li Yuese, was a British scientist, historian and sinologist known for his scientific research and writing on the history of ...more

22
Geoffrey Wilkinson is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Geoffrey Wilkinson Died at 75 (1921-1996) Sir Geoffrey Wilkinson FRS was a Nobel laureate English chemist who pioneered inorganic chemistry and homogeneous transition metal catalysis.

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23
Francis Robert Japp is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Francis Robert Japp Died at 77 (1848-1925) Francis Robert Japp was a British chemist who discovered the Japp-Klingemann reaction in 1887. He was born in Dundee, Scotland, the son of James Japp, a minister of the Catholic Apostolic ...more

24
Hans Adolf Krebs is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Hans Adolf Krebs Died at 81 (1900-1981) Sir Hans Adolf Krebs was a German-born British physician and biochemist. He was the pioneer scientist in study of cellular respiration, a biochemical pathway in cells for production of energy. ...more

25
Robert Mond is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Robert Mond Died at 71 (1867-1938) Sir Robert Ludwig Mond FRS, FRSE was a British chemist and archaeologist.

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Ludwig Mond is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Ludwig Mond Died at 70 (1839-1909) Dr Ludwig Mond, was a German-born chemist and industrialist who took British nationality.

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Frederick Gowland Hopkins is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Frederick Gowland Hopkins Died at 86 (1861-1947) Sir Frederick Gowland Hopkins OM FRS was an English biochemist who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1929, with Christiaan Eijkman, for the discovery of vitamins. He also ...more

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William Crookes is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
William Crookes Died at 87 (1832-1919) Sir William Crookes, OM, FRS was a British chemist and physicist who attended the Royal College of Chemistry, London, and worked on spectroscopy. He was a pioneer of vacuum tubes, inventing the ...more

29
Aaron Klug is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Aaron Klug age 91 Sir Aaron Klug, OM, FRS is a Lithuanian-born British chemist and biophysicist, and winner of the 1982 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his development of crystallographic electron microscopy and his ...more

30
Chaim Weizmann is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Chaim Weizmann Died at 78 (1874-1952) Chaim Azriel Weizmann was a Zionist leader and Israeli statesman who served as President of the Zionist Organization and later as the first President of Israel. He was elected on 16 February ...more

31
Humphry Bowen is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Humphry Bowen Died at 72 (1929-2001) Humphry John Moule Bowen was a British botanist and chemist. Bowen was born in Oxford, son of the chemist Edmund Bowen. He attended the Dragon School, gaining a scholarship to Rugby School and ...more

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Michael Polanyi is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Michael Polanyi Died at 85 (1891-1976) Michael Polanyi, FRS was a Hungarian-British polymath, who made important theoretical contributions to physical chemistry, economics, and philosophy. He argued that positivism supplies a false ...more

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John Maddox is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
John Maddox Died at 84 (1925-2009) Sir John Royden Maddox, FRS was a British science writer. He was an editor of Nature for 22 years, from 1966–1973 and 1980–1995.

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Frederick Soddy is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Frederick Soddy Died at 79 (1877-1956) Frederick Soddy FRS was an English radiochemist who explained, with Ernest Rutherford, that radioactivity is due to the transmutation of elements, now known to involve nuclear reactions. He also ...more

35
Francis William Aston is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Francis William Aston Died at 68 (1877-1945) Francis William Aston FRS was a British chemist and physicist who won the 1922 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his discovery, by means of his mass spectrograph, of isotopes, in a large number of ...more

36
Leslie Orgel is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Leslie Orgel Died at 80 (1927-2007) Leslie Eleazer Orgel FRS was a British chemist. He is known for his theories on the origin of life, as well as his error catastrophe theory of aging, formulated in 1963 and ever since ...more

37
S. Francis Boys is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
S. Francis Boys Died at 61 (1911-1972) Samuel Francis Boys FRS was a British theoretical chemist.

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38
Hugh Linstead is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Hugh Linstead Died at 86 (1901-1987) Sir Hugh Nicholas Linstead OBE was a British pharmaceutical chemist and barrister who served as Conservative Party Member of Parliament for Putney for 22 years. Linstead had significant business ...more

39
John James Richard Macleod is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
John James Richard Macleod Died at 59 (1876-1935) John James Rickard Macleod, FRS was a Scottish biochemist and physiologist. He devoted his career to diverse topics in physiology and biochemistry, but was chiefly interested in carbohydrate ...more

40
Kathleen Lonsdale is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Kathleen Lonsdale Died at 68 (1903-1971) Dame Kathleen Lonsdale, DBE FRS was an Irish crystallographer, who finally proved that the benzene ring was flat by X-ray diffraction methods in 1929. She was the first to use Fourier spectral ...more

41
Nevil Sidgwick is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Nevil Sidgwick Died at 79 (1873-1952) Nevil Vincent Sidgwick FRS was an English theoretical chemist who made significant contributions to the theory of valency and chemical bonding. After a few years at Rugby School, Sidgwick ...more

42
Edward Weston is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Edward Weston Died at 86 (1850-1936) Edward Weston was an English-born American chemist noted for his achievements in electroplating and his development of the electrochemical cell, named the Weston cell, for the voltage standard. ...more

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43
James Keir is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
James Keir Died at 85 (1735-1820) James Keir FRS was a Scottish chemist, geologist, industrialist, and inventor, and an important member of the Lunar Society of Birmingham.

44
John Kidd is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
John Kidd Died at 76 (1775-1851) John Kidd was an English physician, chemist and geologist. John Kidd was born in Westminster, the son of a naval officer and was educated at Christ Church, Oxford.

45
William Ramsay is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
William Ramsay Died at 64 (1852-1916) Sir William Ramsay KCB FRS FRSE was a Scottish chemist who discovered the noble gases and received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1904 "in recognition of his services in the discovery of ...more

46
Juda Hirsch Quastel is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Juda Hirsch Quastel Died at 88 (1899-1987) Juda Hirsch Quastel, CC FRSC FRS was a British-Canadian biochemist who pioneered diverse research in neurochemistry, soil metabolism, cellular metabolism, and cancer. Quastel, also known as ...more

47
Charles Coulson is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Charles Coulson Died at 64 (1910-1974) Charles Alfred Coulson FRS was a British applied mathematician, theoretical chemist and religious author. His major scientific work was as a pioneer of the application of the quantum theory of ...more

48
Thomas Andrews is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Thomas Andrews Died at 72 (1813-1885) Thomas Andrews FRS HFRSE ĵ was a chemist and physicist who did important work on phase transitions between gases and liquids. He was a longtime professor of chemistry at Queen's University of

49
Cyril Norman Hinshelwood is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Cyril Norman Hinshelwood Died at 70 (1897-1967) Sir Cyril Norman Hinshelwood OM PRS was an English physical chemist.

50
Sophie Hosking is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Sophie Hosking age 32 Sophie Hannah Marguerite Hosking MBE is a retired British rower. A fixture in British lightweight sculling since 2007, Hosking won a surprise gold medal for Great Britain in the 2012 Olympics ...more