Chronicling Our Far-Flung Past: Belmont’s Andrew Knoll Honored For Revealing The Earliest History Of The Earth

Photo: Andrew H. Knoll (Credit: Wikimedia Commons, The Royal Society Academy of Sciences)

The list of honors bestowed to Belmont’s Andrew Knoll just gets longer by the year. The foremost natural history scientist today has been acknowledged in the past for his seminal work unearthing the history of the planet from when it was nothing more than a molten rock peppered by meteors. The author of last year’s bestseller “A Brief History of Earth: Four Billion Years in Eight Chapters,” Knoll is the preeminent chronicler of the geological mysteries of how life on Earth evolve over its first three billion years.

On Monday, Harvard University’s Fisher Research Professor of Natural History and a Research Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences was awarded the prestigious Crafoord Prize for 2022 from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences which, since 1982, has promoted international basic research in the disciplines Mathematics and Astronomy, Geosciences, Biosciences and Polyarthritis.

“[Knoll] has developed and combined methods for geological, biological and chemical analysis, which are now widely used by researchers around the globe. Using these methods, he has succeeded in determining the age of strata in bedrock and studied microscopically tiny fossils of unicellular and multicellular organisms from deep time,” reads the Academy’s

In preparation of the ceremony, Senior Producer Katie Hunt of CNN Digital produced a primer of Knoll’s works and discoveries in his 50 years of academic study beginning in the 1970s as a graduate student.

The Society produced a video in which its members described Knoll’s research and breakthroughs in geoscience while Knoll described receiving word that he was named this year’s prize winner.


And Knoll has been a frequent guest on Belmont Media Center’s program “Contemporary Science Issues and Innovations,” the latest being on Dec. 9, 2021.