Birthday anniversary of Dmitry Mendeleyev, a great Russian scientist, founder of the “Periodic law of chemical elements”

8 February 1834

January 27 (February 8), 1834, in a family of Tobolsk gymnasium director Ivan Pavlovich Mendeleyev was born a brilliant Russian scientist and educator, creator of the "Periodic law of chemical elements" Dmitry Mendeleev. His mother - Marya Dmitrievna, born Kornileva, came from a family of merchants, industrialists and philanthropists well-known in Siberia. The first fifteen years of his life Dmitry lived in Tobolsk and in the nearby village of Aremzyany.

In 1841, Dmitry Mendeleev enrolled in Tobolsk gymnasium, from which he graduated in 1849, having received a certificate from the hands of the director, poet and writer Peter Pavlovich Yershov. In 1850-1855, Dmitry studied in the Main Pedagogical Institute and graduated with honors in the rank of senior teacher. During his studies, he published the article "On the isomorphism." In 1856 he defended his thesis "On specific volumes." Having become an assistant professor of St. Petersburg University, he taught a course in organic chemistry.

In 1859-1861, Mendeleyev went on a scientific mission to Europe, where he worked in laboratories, conducted independent research, met with scientists. In 1861, he returned to Russia, continued his teaching career and published the first Russian textbook "Organic Chemistry," which was later awarded the Demidov Prize.

January 31 (February 12), 1865 at a meeting of the Board of Physics and Mathematics Faculty of St. Petersburg University, Dmitry Ivanovich defended his doctoral thesis "On the combination of alcohol and water," which laid the foundations of his theory of solutions. In 1867, he was appointed head of the chemistry department of St. Petersburg University.

In 1869, Mendeleev created the periodic table of elements, which later became an important milestone in the development of the atomic-molecular theory. Developing the ideas periodicity in 1869-1871, the scientist introduced the concept of element’s place in the periodic system as a set of its properties in comparison with those of other elements.

In 1870-1880, Mendeleev continued to be actively engaged in scientific activities, focusing on oil, coal, metallurgical, chemical industries, as well as on the issues of aeronautics. In 1875, he drafted a high-altitude balloon, and in 1887 went up in the air on the balloon to observe a solar eclipse and study the upper atmosphere.

From 1891, Dmitry Ivanovich took an active part in the creation of the "Encyclopedic Dictionary" by F. A. Brockhaus, I. A. Efron, as the editor of chemical and technological, and factory department, as well as the author of many articles, which adorned the edition.

In 1892, Mendeleyev was appointed manager of the Central Chamber of Weights and Measures, where he measured scales and invented ways of renewal and preservation of prototypes of weights and measures.

In 1899, Dmitry Mendeleyev led Ural expedition - a major research and inspection event. He studied Ural metallurgical, mining and timber industries, predicted development of the region, elaborated the recommendation steps to overcome the monopoly and backwardness of the economy and industry in the Urals.

In his last writings ("Cherished thoughts" (1905), "To the cognition of Russia" (1906)), Mendeleyev wrote about the future of Russia and proposed his own political solution of urgent problems of the time.

Dmitry Mendeleyev died January 20 (February 2), 1907 in St. Petersburg.

The scientist left more than 500 publications, including: "The specific volumes" (1856), "Correlation of properties with atomic weight of elements" (1869), «Die periodische Gesetzmässigkeit der Elemente» (Periodic trends of chemical elements) (1871), "Where to build oil plants"(1881), "Making sense of protectionism" (1897) and many others.

In his memory, the monuments were raised in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Tobolsk and other cities. Many settlements and schools bear his name.

Scientific authority of Dmitry Ivanovich Mendeleyev was huge. The list of his titles and ranks includes more than 100 items. Since 1941, annual All-Russian Mendeleev readings have been held - annual reports of the leading scholars on topics affecting all areas of chemistry and related sciences: physics, biology and biochemistry.


Lit.: Балюк Н. А. Менделеев Дмитрий Иванович // Большая Тюменская энциклопедия. Тюмень, 2004. Т. 2: И-П. С. 273-274; Деревнина Н. В. Сибирский гений // Православ. просветитель. 2007. № 42. С. 21-24; Дмитрий Иванович Менделеев и Тобольск. Тобольск, 2009; Князев В. Посев научный взойдет для жатвы народной // Сиб. богатство. 2009. № 10. С. 34-39; Копылов В. Е. Памятники Менделееву (сто лет со дня кончины: 1907-2007) // Окрик памяти (история Тюменского края глазами инженера). Тюмень, 2009. Кн. 5. С. 341-363; Савченкова Т. Ершов и Менделеев: новое и малоизвестное // Сиб. богатство. 2011. № 9. С. 38-41; Шиловский М. В. Менделеев Дмитрий Иванович // Историческая энциклопедия Сибири / РАН. Сиб. отд-ние. Ин-т истории. Новосибирск, 2010. Т. 2: К-Р. С. 348; Штефан Н. Дмитрий Менделеев: жизнь и открытия. М., 2011.


Based on the Presidential Library’s materials:

Dmitri Mendeleev (1834–1907): [digital collection].