The prestigious award was a salute to the struggling 27-nation union for its work in promoting democracy and reconciliation since World War II.
It was a cheer for an entity tackling the continent's economic misery -- particularly in debt-ridden Greece, Spain, and Portugal -- as some member countries might be faced with dropping the euro, the EU currency.
The timing wasn't a coincidence.
"This is, in a way, a message to Europe that we should do everything we can and move forward," said Thorbjen Jagland, the chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee and a high European Council official.
"We want to remind all Europeans about what we have achieved on this continent and that we should not let it start disintegrating again and getting nationalism and extremism (to) grow on this continent, because we know what that leads to," Jagland said.
"It's also a clear message to other parts of the world where you have a number of conflicts; this is a good way of solving conflicts, namely getting countries (to) make trade with each other. ..."