Which Elements Are Named After People?

Curium is named for Marie and Pierre Curie.
Curium is named for Marie and Pierre Curie. Unknown/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

There are 14 elements named after people, although only 13 of the names are formally accepted by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC).

  • Samarium (Sm, 62) - The first element named in honor of a person. Samarium is named for its ore, samarskite, which in turn is named for V.E. Samarsky-Bukjovets, the Russian engineer who allowed researchers access to him mineral samples.
  • Bohrium (Bh, 107) – Niels Bohr