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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
Dec. at 88 (1925-2013)
Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, (née Roberts; 13 October 1925 – 8 April 2013) was a British stateswoman who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990 ...more

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2
Michael Faraday is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 76 (1791-1867)
Michael Faraday FRS (; 22 September 1791 – 25 August 1867) was an English scientist who contributed to the study of electromagnetism and electrochemistry. His main discoveries include the ...more

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3
Edward Frankland is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 74 (1825-1899)
Sir Edward Frankland, (18 January 1825 – 9 August 1899) was a British chemist. He was one of the originators of organometallic chemistry and introduced the concept of combining power or valence. ...more
4
Ernest Rutherford is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 66 (1871-1937)
Ernest Rutherford, 1st Baron Rutherford of Nelson, , HFRSE, LLD (30 August 1871 – 19 October 1937), was a New Zealand physicist who came to be known as the father of nuclear physics. ...more
5
Charles Thomson Rees Wil... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 90 (1869-1959)
Charles Thomson Rees Wilson, CH, FRS (14 February 1869 – 15 November 1959) was a Scottish physicist and meteorologist who won 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
Dec. at 89 (1886-1975)
Sir Robert Robinson (13 September 1886 – 8 February 1975) was a British organic chemist and Nobel laureate recognised in 1947 for his research on plant dyestuffs (anthocyanins) and alkaloids. In ...more
7
Norman Haworth is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 67 (1883-1950)
Sir Walter Norman Haworth FRS (19 March 1883 – 19 March 1950) was a British chemist best known for his groundbreaking work on ascorbic acid (vitamin C) while working at the University of ...more
8
Michael Smith is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 68 (1932-2000)
Michael Smith (April 26, 1932 – October 4, 2000) was a British-born Canadian biochemist and businessman. He shared the 1993 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Kary Mullis for his work in developing ...more
9
Rosalind Franklin is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 38 (1920-1958)
Rosalind Elsie Franklin (25 July 1920 – 16 April 1958) was an English chemist and X-ray crystallographer whose work was central to the understanding of the molecular structures of DNA ...more

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10
Arthur Harden is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 75 (1865-1940)
Sir Arthur Harden, FRS (12 October 1865 – 17 June 1940) was a British biochemist. He shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1929 with Hans Karl August Simon von Euler-Chelpin for their ...more
11
James Watt is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 83 (1736-1819)
James Watt (; 30 January 1736 (19 January 1736 OS) – 25 August 1819) was a Scottish inventor, mechanical engineer, and chemist who improved on Thomas Newcomen's 1712 Newcomen steam engine with ...more

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12
Helen Sharman is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
age 55
Helen Patricia Sharman, CMG, OBE, HonFRSC (born 30 May 1963) is a chemist who became the first British cosmonaut and the first woman to visit the Mir space station in May 1991.
13
Goldsworthy Gurney is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 82 (1793-1875)
Sir Goldsworthy Gurney (14 February 1793 – 28 February 1875) was an English surgeon, chemist, lecturer, consultant, architect, builder. He was a prototypical British gentleman scientist and ...more
14
Neil Bartlett is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 76 (1932-2008)
Neil Bartlett (15 September 1932 – 5 August 2008) 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... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 90 (1907-1997)
Alexander Robertus Todd, Baron Todd of Trumpington (2 October 1907 – 10 January 1997) was a Scottish biochemist whose research on the structure and synthesis of nucleotides, nucleosides, and ...more
16
Henry Cavendish is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 79 (1731-1810)
Henry Cavendish FRS (; 10 October 1731 – 24 February 1810) was an English natural philosopher, scientist, and an important experimental and theoretical chemist and physicist. He is noted for his ...more

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17
A. E. Wilder-Smith is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. 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.
18
Rodney Robert Porter is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 68 (1917-1985)
Prof Rodney Robert Porter, CH, FRS FRSE HFRCP (8 October 1917 – 6 September 1985) was a British biochemist and Nobel laureate.
19
Joseph Priestley is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 71 (1733-1804)
Joseph Priestley (; 24 March [O.S. 13 March] 1733 – 6 February 1804) was an 18th-century English Separatist theologian, natural philosopher, chemist, innovative grammarian, multi-subject ...more
20
Dorothy Hodgkin is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 84 (1910-1994)
Dorothy Mary Crowfoot Hodgkin (12 May 1910 – 29 July 1994) was a British chemist who developed protein crystallography, for which she won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1964.She advanced the ...more
21
Joseph Needham is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 95 (1900-1995)
Noel Joseph Terence Montgomery Needham (; 9 December 1900 – 24 March 1995) was a British biochemist, 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
Dec. at 75 (1921-1996)
Sir Geoffrey Wilkinson FRS (14 July 1921 – 26 September 1996) was a Nobel laureate English chemist who pioneered inorganic chemistry and homogeneous transition metal catalysis.
23
Francis Robert Japp is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 77 (1848-1925)
Francis Robert Japp (8 February 1848 – 1 August 1925) was a British chemist who discovered the Japp-Klingemann reaction in 1887. He was born in Dundee, Scotland, the son of James Japp, a ...more
24
Hans Adolf Krebs is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 81 (1900-1981)
Sir Hans Adolf Krebs (; 25 August 1900 – 22 November 1981) was a German-born British biologist, physician and biochemist. He was a pioneer scientist in the study of cellular respiration, a ...more
25
Robert Mond is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Chemists from the United Kingdom
Dec. at 71 (1867-1938)
Sir Robert Ludwig Mond, FRS, FRSE (9 September 1867 – 22 October 1938) was a British chemist and archaeologist.