Saturday Feb 8, 1834 to Saturday Feb 2, 1907
Saint Petersburg - RussiaDmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev was a Russian chemist and inventor. He is best remembered for formulating the Periodic Law and creating a farsighted version of the periodic table of elements. He used the Periodic Law not only to correct the then-accepted properties of some known elements, such as the valence and atomic weight of uranium, but also to predict the properties of eight elements that were yet to be discovered.
In his birth year, Mendeleev's father Ivan Pavlovich Mendeleev became blind losing his teaching position at the local gymnasium(school).In his birth year, Mendeleev's father Ivan Pavlovich Mendeleev became blind losing his teaching position at the local gymnasium(school).
Mendeleev went to study abroad at the University of Heidelberg for two years which was financed by a government fellowship, during that time he set up his laboratory in his apartment instead of working along with the prominent chemists of the university, including Robert Bunsen, Emil Erlenmeyer, and August Kekulé.
In September 1860, Mendeleev attended an international chemistry congress that was held to discuss critical issues as atomic weights, chemical symbols, and chemical formulas, where he met many of Europe’s leading chemists. In later years, that congress was especially remembered by Mendeleev due to an important paper circulated to the Italian chemist Stanislao Cannizzaro that explained the notion of atomic weights.
Together, Mendeleev and Feozva Nikitichna Leshcheva got married on 27 April 1862 at Nikolaev Engineering Institute's church in St. Petersburg. Together they raised two children, a son named Volodya and a daughter Olga, who he named after his beloved sister.
In 1863, there were 56 known elements with a new element being discovered at a rate of approximately one per year, there existed almost 63 known elements by end of the 1860s. And during Mendeleev's work on organizing the existed elements according to their atomic weight, he proposed the potential of existence for new elements such as germanium, gallium, and scandium. Back then this was strongly criticized.
At the beginning of his teaching career as a professor, he couldn't find a textbook that satisfied his needs for his courses. So, he wrote the definitive textbook of his time, Principles of Chemistry (two volumes, 1868–1870). These books have had many editions and translations. Also, the books helped Mendeleev in his later discoveries.
During his researches, Mendeleev discovered a dependency between the atomic number of an element and it's physical and chemical properties. So, In March 1869, Mendeleev postulated the periodic law, also called Mendeleev's law. It stated that the physical and chemical properties of the elements recur periodically when arranged in the order of their atomic weights.
Beginning in the 1870s, Mendeleev cared about fields concerning his motherland beyond chemistry, looking at aspects of the Russian industry, and technical issues in agricultural productivity. He explored demographic issues, sponsored studies of the Arctic Sea, tried to measure the value of chemical fertilizers, and promoted a merchant navy.
Mendeleev's divorce from Leshcheva was finalized one month after he had married Popova on 2 April 1882. Even after the divorce, Mendeleev was technically a bigamist, the state of entering a marriage with one person while still legally married to another, where the Russian Orthodox Church required at least seven years before lawful remarriage.
In 1906, the Nobel Committee for Chemistry recommended to the Swedish Academy, at which Mendeleev was a member, to award the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 1906 to Mendeleev for his discovery of the periodic system. The Chemistry Section of the Swedish Academy supported this recommendation. The Academy was then supposed to approve the Committee's choice, as it has done in almost every case. Unexpectedly, at the full meeting of the Academy, some members of the committee pressed for the rejection of Mendeleev, arguing that the periodic system was too old to acknowledge its discovery in 1906.