The history of the appearance of the first publication devoted to the iconography of Isaac Newton

This paper attempts to reconstruct the circumstances of the appearance of a study on the iconography of Isaac Newton, the first such study in the Russian iconographic literature. The important details of how this study was performed were elucidated, based on the archival and difficult-to-access primary sources (rare books). The author of this study was P. M. Dul’skii, the Honored Worker of Arts of Tatar Autonomous SSR. The role of Academician S. I. Vavilov in the preparation of this article is also described. The events related to this publication took place during the most difficult, watershed period of the Great Patriotic War – in the fall of 1942 and the winter of 1943 when the Soviet troops’ offensive began in Stalingrad. It was at that dramatic moment in the history of the country that the USSR Academy of Sciences conceived and implemented a large-scale program to celebrate Isaac Newton’s 300<sup>th</sup> anniversary. A bibliological analysis of the USSR Academy of Sciences’ publishing activities during that period shows that, even in wartime, the Soviet scientists’ scientific communications functioned quite efficiently both within the country and internationally. It was during that period that a series of five books devoted to Isaac Newton’s 300<sup>th</sup> anniversary was published in the USSR. One of the jewels of this series was a small collection of papers of the Kazan Aeronautical Institute that included P. M. Dul’skii’s paper, The Iconography of Isaac Newton. It was the first publication in the Russian language that was devoted to this theme.


Recommended bibliographic description

, The history of the appearance of the first publication devoted to the iconography of Isaac Newton, Voprosy Istorii Estestvoznaniia i Tekhniki [Studies in History of Science and Technology], , p.  526-539

    © Studies in the History of Science and Technology: Quarterly scientific journal of the Russian Academy of Sciences (2015)
    ISSN 0205-9606. Индекс 70143