A story of the laboratory is a history of establishing and
development of the Kazan School of Chemistry. Although the chemical
laboratory of the University was founded in 1806, it didn't have a certain
place. The department of chemistry was occupied by ordinary people or
those, who were interested in other sciences and considered Chemistry to
be a side subject. Often they were foreigners, who hadn't adapted to the
severe (in direct and metaphorical meaning) Russian climate. That's why
the University Council, headed by N.I.Lobachevsky, decided to engage
Nikolay Zinin, a talented university graduate of 1833, to be given the post
professor and lecture of Chemistry later on.
After his getting a title of junior scientific assistant in Chemistry in
1837 Nikolay N. Zinin was sent abroad for three years. He visited
laboratories of famous scientists of that time, chemical plants and mines.
For a year he worked at a well-known Justus Liebich laboratory in Hissen
(Germany). There Zinin learned new methods of making experiments and
teaching Chemistry, which were introduced by Liebich. They implied
both lectures and practical classes. The material, having been got there,
was enough for Doctor's Dissertation, which he successfully presented in
St.Petersburg University in 1841.
Having returned to Kazan, Zinin began teaching Chemistry,
combining theory and experiment, and went on doing researches, which
made him and Kazan University known all over the world. He discovered
the reaction of transformation of aroma nitro-compounds into amino-
compounds and got synthetic aniline in 1842. This reaction was a starting
point for the development of aniline-dye industry. A famous German
chemist Hoffman was a one, who expressed the meaning of Zinin's
discovery in the most laconic and bright way: "If Zinin hadn't done
anything except transformation of nitrobenzene into aniline, his name
would have gone down in history of Chemistry even though".
The construction of a new building of the laboratory was finished
assistant of chemistry, was appointed to the post of its director. He
introduced the posts of staff laboratory assistants, according to the
regulations, written by him. Klauss supplied the laboratory with
equipment, successfully combining teaching and research work.
If organic branch of the Kazan School of Chemistry comes from
He made a great contribution to the world science. In 1844, while
researching platinum ore from the Ural mines, Klauss discovered a new
element - ruthenium. This is the only one among natural elements, opened
in Russia and named after the state (as Ruthenia is the Latin for Russia).
A great merit of Zinin and Klaus to Russian Chemistry is that, being
young people. The most talented one Alexander M. Butlerov was fated to
play a great role in the history of the Kazan School of Chemistry and give
it his name later on.
University. He became a professor at the age of 29. It was in Kazan,
where he wrote all his fundamental works, including the theory of
chemical structure of organic compounds (1861), which connected
chemical properties and molecular structure.
The theory is of great importance: it opened the ways of chemical
molecules' constructing in theory and then in practice. Butlerov made
series of purposeful synthesis for his theory to be proved, getting for the
first time a number of substances, namely trimethyl-carbone and
isobutylene. For the first time he synthesized saccharine substance -
"methylenitan" in the laboratory.
During the period from 1861 to 1863 Butlerov was twice appointed
Council, but left the post of his own accord.
Vladimir V. Markovnikov headed the department of organic chemistry.
He had graduated from the university in 1860 and engaged to the
laboratory by Butlerov's reference. Very soon quick wit and outstanding
experimenter abilities let Markovnikov became not only the best
Butlerov's follower, but also a like-minded person.
Master and Doctor's theses by Markovnikov are dedicated to the
of organic compounds, which marked the beginning of the contemporary
organic chemistry. Markovnikov developed his idea of mutual atomic
influence in a molecule. The dissertations by Markovnikov with
dedicatory inscriptions for Butlerov as well as some of substances,
obtained by him, are still kept in the laboratory. After eleven years of his
lecturing V.V.Markovnikov left Kazan and became the founder of
Moscow school of organic chemistry later on.
Alexander Zaitsev, another famous student of Butlerov School,
of the department of organic chemistry for forty years and educated a
whole galaxy of talented chemists. Among his students were
A.Ye.Arbuzov, and D.M.Marko. A.Ye.Arbuzov said, that "the number of
A.M.Zaitsev's disciples is great; in this sense Alexander Mikhailovich,
perhaps, takes the first place in the history of Russian Chemistry".
Zaitsev's works are of great importance for the theory of chemical
methods of obtaining alcohol of different classes, which are known as
Works by V.V.Markovnikov and A.M.Zaitsev on the addition of galogen-
reverse reaction of splitting are of great theoretical value. Empirical rules,
having been set by these works, are called "Markovnikov-Zaitsev rules".
indebted to Yegor Ye. Vagner, former A.M.Zaitsev and A.M.Butlerov's
disciple. Even now the method of "Vagner oxidation" is used for defining
the structure of unsaturated compounds.
The Kiev School was established on the basis of Sergey N.
with the development of organic chemistry in Kharkov and with Dmitry
M. Marko in the city of Perm.
All mentioned above proves, that Russian schools of organic
the Kazan school has a honorary name of "a cradle of Russian chemistry".
Flavian M. Flavitsky is another remarkable scientist, who belonged
University, where he attended lectures of N.N.Beketov, who studied under
worked in St. Petersburg under the direction of A.M.Butlerov and was
recommended by the latter to the Kazan University, where he came in
1873 and began teaching physical chemistry as a separate science.
His Master's thesis is devoted to Butlerov's subject, and the Doctor's
terpenes, natural compounds, which are contained in soft resin, i.e. the
resin of conifers of the European part of Russian. The work was of
Flavitsky obtained turpentine and rosin of high quality from soft
The second half of Flavitsky's activity was dedicated to general and
physical chemistry. He founded an original independed school of
inorganic chemistry. Among his disciples are D.K.Dobroserdov,
A.M.Vasilyev, and A.Ya.Bogorodsky.
general, analytic and technical chemistry in Butlerov room. During the
period from 1840-s to 1860-s free public lectures on chemistry and
chemical technology, ordered by the administrator of the Kazan
educational region, count P.I.Musin-Pushkin, took place there every week.
"These lectures were attended quite willingly by different people. Some of
them, like Butlerov's lectures on chemistry, or Kittary's on technology,
were in fashion and people wanted to listen to them so much as to see
theatre performances by Miloslavsky".
Beside organic and analytical laboratories there was a technical,
technology, Modest Ya. Kittary was a brilliant lecturer and organizer. He
initiated the first Kazan exhibition of "rural productions" in 1852, where
products of chemical, tanning, brick and cotton-spinning industry were
demonstrated. Modest Kittary, together with Butlerov, was a member of
"Economical Society", set in 1839 and the founder and first editor of a
magazine "Zapiski Kazanskogo Ekonomicheskogo Obshchestva".
During the period from 1854 to 1858 Kittary published more than
leather, bee-keeping, gardening and potash. He suggested a project of
stearin and soap-boiling production, which was used by the Krestovnikovs
while constructing their plant. Two biggest plants of the Kazan city of the
second half of the XIX century (Krestovnikovs' and Alafuzovs' plants) had
been prospering owing to M.Ya.Kittary.
An important event in the life of Kazan School of Chemistry
The document, certifying the fact
Butlerov jubilee, was held in Kazan. Outstanding Russian scientists
participated in the congress. On A.Ye.Arbuzov's initiative and with the
support of the elders the congress took the resolution to establish a
research chemical institute, named after A.M.Butlerov, at the Kazan State
University. The institute was opened in 1929. Its first director was
Nowadays Butlerov room is used for different purposes. Beside
year students of the chemistry department is held there. Representations of
diplomas, candidate and doctor's dissertations and different scientific
conferences also take place in Butlerov room.
The museum visitors can get to the library from the room through a
and French, issued in the XIX century beginning with 1823, are kept there
in beautiful old bookcases.
The first chemical journal in Russian, namely the magazine of
in 1869. Zinin and Butlerov took an active part in it. All issues of the
journal are kept in the library now. Collection of the most important
Zaitsev's wife and son gave this remarkable collection to the laboratory
after his death.
A.Ye.Arbuzov headed the Department of Organic Chemistry during
from the Kazan University in 1900. Living in Novo-Alexandria city in
Poland, far from the established scientific centers, he chose a new trend of
investigations, namely chemistry of phosphoric organic compounds.
A well known reaction of transformation of phosphorous acid ether
method of synthesis of phosphorous organic compounds, belonging to
There are cylinder vessels and retorts with phenol, salicylic acid and
stopped importing expensive and valuable preparations from Germany to
Russia, such as phenol (for obtaining carbolic acid) and aspirin.
A.Ye.Arbuzov and his colleagues from the former chemical laboratory
proposed a method of phenol and aspirin synthesis, based on the material
of home production. They were produced at the Krestovnikovs' candle and
While organizing technological process of salicylic production
More over, he designed new types of apparatuses for chemical
technology. Alexander Ye. Arbuzov took part both in designing all plant
apparatuses and their mounting as well.
Journals on Chemistry, issued in the XIX
Aspirin of Kazan production, having been medically tested, was of
the same quality as the aspirin, produced by German company "Bier". At
that time aspirin, sold in drugstores of the Kazan city, was packed in
pasteboard boxes. Having aesthetic gift, Alexander Ye. Arbuzov himself
made drafts of 500-gram- and 20-gram-packing. More over, he created the
plant production advertising.
A.Ye.Arbuzov among the workers and
Another A.M.Zaitsev's disciple, A.I.Lunyak being the professor of
organized students practice at the University. He was the rector of the
university during the period from 1926 to 1928, then headed the chemistry
department in the Kazan Medical Institute. Former students of Zinin,
Klauss, Butlerov and Zaitsev opened new fields in many universities of
Russia, contributing to the fame of Kazan School of Chemistry.
The background of the Kazan School of Chemistry is a history of
Russia. Academician A.I.Konovalov said to the point, that the XX century
was "Arbuzov's century in the history of the Kazan School of Chemistry".
Alexander Ye. Arbuzov and then Boris A. Arbuzov headed the Kazan
students organized and directed departments and laboratories in Kazan
universities, research institutes and chemistry plants.
Boris A. Arbuzov continued working in the field of chemistry of
he and his students worked on the connections between reactivities and
thin structure of organic compounds, using methods of physics. At present
the researches are being done there and in other laboratories in Kazan,
providing further development of Butlerov's traditions.
Taking into consideration the great contribution, made by the
every second year. The first prizewinners were two persons, A.N.Pudovik
from Russia and L.K.Kvin from the USA in 1997. In 2003 (the year of
100th Arbuzov's jubilee) the prize was given to professor of chemistry
E.Nike from Germany.