Murray Gell-Mann & the invention of the quark

The term quark was coined by physicist Murray Gell-Mann, after a word from James Joyce’s novel Finnegans Wake. He also predicted the existence of a particle called the omega-minus, which was confirmed in 1964. He won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1969 for his work on the theory of elementary particles.
Gell-Mann was a child prodigy who entered Yale University at the age of 15 and graduated with a B.S. in physics in 1948. He introduced the concept of strangeness, a quantum property that accounted for previously puzzling decay patterns of certain mesons, in 1953. He also proposed a scheme for classifying subatomic particles into simple orderly arrangements of families, called the Eightfold Way, after Buddha’s Eightfold Path to Enlightenment and bliss, in 1961.

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