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Rosalind Franklin

1920 - 1958

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Rosalind Elsie Franklin (25 July 1920 – 16 April 1958) was a British chemist and X-ray crystallographer whose work was central to the understanding of the molecular structures of DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid), RNA (ribonucleic acid), viruses, coal, and graphite. Although her works on coal and viruses were appreciated in her lifetime, Franklin's contributions to the discovery of the structure of DNA were largely unrecognized during her life, for which Franklin has been variously referred to as the "wronged heroine", the "dark lady of DNA", the "forgotten heroine", a "feminist icon", and the "Sylvia Plath of molecular biology".Franklin graduated in 1941 with a degree in natural sciences from Newnham College, Cambridge, and then enrolled for a PhD in physical chemistry under Ronald George Wreyford Norrish, the 1920 Chair of Physical Chemistry at the University of Cambridge. Disappointed by Norrish's lack of enthusiasm, she took up a research position under the British Coal Utilisation Research Association (BCURA) in 1942. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of Rosalind Franklin has received more than 5,036,372 page views. Her biography is available in 85 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 79 in 2019). Rosalind Franklin is the 13th most popular biologist (up from 17th in 2019), the 141st most popular biography from United Kingdom (up from 157th in 2019) and the 3rd most popular British Biologist.

Rosalind Franklin discovered the double helix structure of DNA.

Memorability Metrics

  • 5.0M

    Page Views (PV)

  • 72.93

    Historical Popularity Index (HPI)

  • 85

    Languages Editions (L)

  • 8.38

    Effective Languages (L*)

  • 4.41

    Coefficient of Variation (CV)

Page views of Rosalind Franklins by language


Among biologists, Rosalind Franklin ranks 13 out of 841Before her are Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, Luc Montagnier, Ernst Haeckel, James Watson, Karl Landsteiner, and Konrad Lorenz. After her are Thomas Hunt Morgan, Alfred Russel Wallace, Richard Dawkins, Georges Cuvier, Francis Crick, and Robert Brown.

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Among people born in 1920, Rosalind Franklin ranks 8Before her are Federico Fellini, Isaac Asimov, Charles Bukowski, Yul Brynner, Frank Herbert, and Toshiro Mifune. After her are Ray Bradbury, Farouk of Egypt, Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, Mario Puzo, Paul Celan, and Charlie Parker. Among people deceased in 1958, Rosalind Franklin ranks 4Before her are Pope Pius XII, Imre Nagy, and John B. Watson. After her are Wolfgang Pauli, Frédéric Joliot-Curie, Roger Martin du Gard, Clinton Davisson, Maurice de Vlaminck, Faisal II of Iraq, Kurt Alder, and Ernest Lawrence.

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In United Kingdom

Among people born in United Kingdom, Rosalind Franklin ranks 141 out of 7,765Before her are George Boole (1815), Æthelstan (895), J. J. Thomson (1856), William IV of the United Kingdom (1765), John Venn (1834), and Anthony Eden (1897). After her are John, King of England (1166), Alfred Russel Wallace (1823), Charlie Watts (1941), George Harrison (1943), Princess Beatrice of the United Kingdom (1857), and George IV of the United Kingdom (1762).

Among BIOLOGISTS In United Kingdom

Among biologists born in United Kingdom, Rosalind Franklin ranks 3Before her are Charles Darwin (1809) and Alexander Fleming (1881). After her are Alfred Russel Wallace (1823), Francis Crick (1916), Robert Brown (1773), Thomas Henry Huxley (1825), Christian de Duve (1917), Richard Owen (1804), Erasmus Darwin (1731), John Edward Gray (1800), and Philip Miller (1691).