Vladimir I. Borodulin
N.A. Semashko National Public Health Research Institute, Federal Agency of Scientific Organization
The article discusses the criteria that should be used by researchers who include individuals among the ranks of historically significant people and dedicate biographical articles to them in encyclopedias, monographs and doctoral research. It is shown that in the history of domestic clinical medicine, prominent physicians with equivalent standing in the second half of the 19th century – E.E. Eikhvald (St. Petersburg), K.M. Pavlinov and M.P. Cherinov (Moscow), N.A. Vinogradov (Kazan) and F.F. Mering (Kiev) – have not received equal coverage in historical medical literature. Six criteria are considered and any of them can be taken as a basis for a discussion on the historic performance of the individual. The author believes that the first criterion is an outstanding scientific contribution (for example, in the case of G.I. Sokolsky and V.A. Basov). The second criterion is the creation of a large scientific school (e.g., A.Y. Kozhevnikov – the creator of the largest school of neurologists – falls into the “Hall of Fame”, regardless of his other merits). The third criterion is exceptional medical fame (as is the case with G.A. Zakharyin or Mering). The fourth criterion is outstanding pedagogical activities (a classic example being Moscow University Professor F.I. Inozemtsev). The fifth criterion is performing especially significant scientific-social activities (e.g., Military Medical Academy Professor V.A. Manassein’s creation of the journal “Vrach” (“Doctor”), to which every third doctor in Russia subscribed by the beginning of the 20th century). The sixth criterion is outstanding manifestations of humanistic principles in medicine (from F.P. Haas to F.G. Yanovsky) or medical heroism (e.g., O.O. Mochutkovsky or I.A. Deminsky) or high civic position (V.P. Serbsky could serve as example). In many cases, several criteria may be applied to one and the same historical person.
Keywords: history of medicine, clinical practice of internal medicine in Russia, six criteria for the selection of biographical articles