Prof Peter Higgs didn't actually provide the "god particle" nickname for the boson that he theorized back in the 1960s.
Here's an interesting interview with University of Edinburgh physics lecturer Victoria Martin (she studied under Higgs as a student) where she explains that the name is actually a bastardization (my word, not hers) of what Nobel physics laureate Leon Lederman wanted to call it. Because of the difficulty in proving the existence of the Higgs boson, Lederman, author of The God Particle (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_God_Particle:_If_the_Universe_Is_the_Answer,_What_Is_the_Question%3F) wanted to call it "that god-damned particle" a phrase which his publishers objected to.
So there it is.
'God Particle' Scientist Vindicated 50 Years Later : NPR
Peter Higgs is the name — and man — behind the Higgs boson. He and his team proposed the particle's existence back in the 1960s. Robert Siegel talks to Victoria Martin, a lecturer in physics and astro…
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