On February 6, at a ceremonial meeting of the scientific community in the conference hall of the Research Library, an exhibition of lifetime editions of the Dmitry Ivanovich Mendeleev, great Russian scientist, honorary member of Imperial Tomsk University, will be opened.
- This is a gift to the university community at once on several significant and memorable dates, - said Artyom Vasilyev, head of the Department of Manuscripts and Book Monuments of the TSU Research Library. – On February 8, we will celebrate the Day of Russian Science and the 185th anniversary of the birth of Dmitry Ivanovich Mendeleev. The year 2019 also was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly as the International Year of the Periodic Table of Chemical Elements in honor of the 150th anniversary of the discovery of the Periodic System by Dmitry Mendeleev in 1869.
According to Artyom Vasilyev, the Research Library preserved lifetime editions of Dmitry Ivanovich's works, among which there are copies with the autograph of the scientist and works donated to the library of Imperial Tomsk University by himself.
- The exhibition presents, in modern terms, the Mendeleev publication activity in all the variety of his profession - a student publication in 1854 to the thoughts of the scientist and encyclopedist in the latest books Cherished Thoughts and To the Knowledge of Russia, - said Artem Vasilyev. - Sections of the exhibition reflect Mendeleev’s own assessment of his life journey as “three services to the Motherland”: scientific activities, teaching, and work for the benefit of the development of Russian industry.
Most of the exhibition is devoted to Mendeleev research. For individual publications, it is possible to trace how from a report in the Russian Chemical Society (1869) to a detailed publication in the leading world journal Annalen der Chemie und Pharmacie (1871), the periodic table has changed and periodic legitimacy was formulated. It also presents the main work of the scientist on experimental studies of the elasticity of the gas and the hydration theory of solutions, the fundamental monograph on aeronautics, and a number of texts on metrology.
The “second service to the Motherland” is known for the creation of famous Mendeleev textbooks. Dmitry Ivanovich Mendeleev was the author of the very first domestic textbooks on organic and inorganic chemistry. His favorite was Fundamentals of Chemistry. The textbook has withstood eight lifetime editions and is still being republished; for a long time it was the main textbook on inorganic chemistry in Russian and international universities.
The section devoted to the “third service of the Motherland” presents works on the feasibility study of the development of the oil and mining industry of the Russian Empire, performed by Mendeleev on behalf of government agencies and public organizations. Here you can see an overview of the well-known expedition to study the iron industry in the Urals, and materials on Dmitry Ivanovich’s oil problem in Russia, including his famous dispute with the head of the largest oil company, Ludvig Nobel.
A special place is occupied by a copy of Mendeleev’s famous work Explanatory Tariff or the Study of Industrial Development of Russia in Connection with its Common Customs Tariff, 1891 with an autograph on the published cover. The section is supplemented by more general works devoted to education in Russia and reflections on the political and social and economic structure of the Russian state.