achieve vs win the Nobel prize

newname

Senior Member
Vietnamese
Hi,
Here's the sentence:
Marie Curie was the first woman to ........ two Nobel prizes.

I would go for win, but how about achieve, is it idiomatic?

Thanks.
 
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    I can't speak for Tazzler, New Name, but I agree that using "win" sounds more idiomatic here. "Achieve" is possible, but it's not the word that many would choose in conversation to describe what Curie did. To talk of "winning" prizes is ordinary.
     

    Uncle Bob

    Senior Member
    British English
    Hello,
    One "achieves" an aim or goal so it would be correct (in terms of language) to say "Curie achieved her aim/goal of winning ...". In reality it may well not have been one of her aims.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Marie Curie was the first woman to ........ two Nobel prizes.

    I don't think one either wins or achieves Nobel prizes.
    They are awarded by the Nobel Foundation.
    I suggest:
    Marie Curie was the first woman to be awarded two Nobel prizes.
     

    Gwan

    Senior Member
    New Zealand, English
    Marie Curie was the first woman to ........ two Nobel prizes.

    I don't think one either wins or achieves Nobel prizes.
    They are awarded by the Nobel Foundation.
    I suggest:
    Marie Curie was the first woman to be awarded two Nobel prizes.
    You may be technically correct, but (with the usual caveats about trusting Google) "win the Nobel" gets over 4 million hits and "win a Nobel" almost 1.75 million. (9.5 million for 'awarded a/the Nobel, to be fair.) I don't think using "win" would raise many people's eyebrows, certainly not mine anyway!
     
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