- Joseph D. Zund
Szilard, Leo (11 February 1898–30 May 1964), physicist and biologist, was born in Budapest, Hungary, the son of Louis Szilard, a civil engineer and contractor, and Thekla Vidor. The family name was originally Spitz, but it was changed in 1900 in response to governmental pressure for the Magyarization of foreign-sounding names. Young Szilard received his Gymnasium education in Budapest, where he showed a marked aptitude for chemistry, mathematics, and physics. He entered the Palatine Joseph Technical University (now the Budapest Institute of Technology) as an engineering student in 1916. However, his studies were interrupted by a year of service in the Austro-Hungarian army as an officer candidate. Afflicted by influenza, however, Szilard had to leave the military; he then returned to his engineering studies....