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Russian Academy of Sciences Celebrates 300th Anniversary, Mendeleev’s 190th Birthday

Gennady Krasnikov sent out his congratulations today on the occasion of the 300th anniversary of the establishment of the Russian Academy of Sciences, founded on February 8, 1724 by Tsar Peter, on the advice of German philosopher and mathematician, Gottfried Leibniz. In his greetings, Krasnikov said: “Throughout its 300-year history, the Russian Academy of Sciences has preserved traditions: some of them are continuity, openness in discussing scientific issues, and the preservation and development of scientific schools.”

“Today we are faced with large-scale tasks to strengthen scientific and technological sovereignty and ensure the security of our country,” the academician said. He noted the significant contribution to the development of Russian science by young scientists who “work actively and are not afraid to set themselves big, ambitious goals.”

In addition, the Academy today is also celebrating the 190th anniversary of the birth of Dmitri Mendeleev. That celebration by the Academy is probably most important, given that Mendeleev was never officially elected as a member. His sudden divorce and quick remarriage did not sit well with many of the Academicians, and there were petty professional jealousies with some members that also played into the matter. He was, however, elected a member of the Swedish Academy of Sciences in 1905 and was made an international member of the American Philosophical Society. The Russian Academy has also honored him ever since, and it also annually gives out a medal of achievement in his name. Mendeleev furthermore influenced a whole generation of Russian scientists, including Vladimir Vernadsky, who attended his classes in chemistry at St. Petersburg University.

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