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Nicolae Caranfil

Biographical information

TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameNicolae Gheorghe•Caranfil
Used nameNicolae•Caranfil
Other namesNicholas George Caranfil
Born28 November 1893 in Galați (ROU)
Died22 April 1978 in Forest Hills, New York (USA)
AffiliationsCercul Militar Bucureşti, București (ROU)
NOC Romania


Nicolae Caranfil fenced at the 1928 Olympics and was Romanian national champion in épée six times (1924, 1925, 1927, 1931, 1933, and 1934). However, he is much better known for his life outside of sports. Caranfil studied at the National School of Bridges in, and then earned a civil engineering degree at the École de Génie Civil Grand University in Belgium. He also took post-graduate courses at Cambridge in England. During World War I he served as a second lieutenant in artillery, but was then transferred to the military commission’s technical office supply armament from France, England and Italy, where he became chief of this department.

On return to Romania, Caranfil helped organize the modern electrical and gas power networks and the chain of lakes around Bucareşti. He helped found the industry of electric cars in Cluj and Timisoara. The Romanian government set up the Society Bucharest General Electricity and Gas (SGGE) and Comunale Bucharest (UCB) that dealt with the exploitation of water sources and sanitation, and Caranfil was made general manager of both. Over the next 10 years he worked with the government to set up an electrical system in Bucareşti. Caranfil helped design and build the lakes around the city that became the source of city water.

Caranfil had multiple published works in engineering, and works on electrical and water supply. He was a member of the Society of Civil Engineers in France, the Council of the International Union of Electricity, and was elected member of the Romanian Academy in 1940. After World War II, he left Romania, first living in Britain and France, and the moved to the United States. He became a US citizen on 11 November 1954, changing his name to Nicholas George Caranfil.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1928 Summer Olympics Fencing ROU Nicolae Caranfil
Foil, Team, Men (Olympic) Romania 4 p1 r1/4

Olympic family relations