Great Russian geometry. Nikolai Ivanovich Lobachevsky

Copernicus and Lobachevsky has interesting thing in common - they are both Slavic origin. Each of them made a revolution in scientific views, and both these revolutions are of enormous importance - it is a revolution in our understanding of the cosmos. ”
English mathematician William Clifford

Date and place of birth of Nikolai Ivanovich still cause controversy among biographers. According to some sources he was born in the city of Nizhny Novgorod, according to others - in Makariev (Novgorod province), according to the third - in the village of Elm, located not far from Kazan. The same uncertainty is observed from birth. The generally accepted version is based on the Nizhniy Novgorod found in the archive records, reports that some “provincial registrar Ivan Maximov November 20, 1792 a son Nicholas.” Last in the ancient document is not specified, but there is every reason to believe that this is the future of the great mathematician. Ivan Maksimovich Lobachevsky was a petty official, and perform the work of the architect of the district, indicating that he had received a good education. About mother Lobachevsky - Praskovya Alexandrovna - we know even less.

Nicholas was the second of three brothers. At the age of forty years, Ivan Maksimovic seriously ill and died, leaving the family in a difficult financial situation. Lobachevsky lived in the house of Captain Stepan Shebarshin, who served as a surveyor. This man is different tenacity and iron will. Properly educated and all children Praskovya Alexandrovna. After the death of Captain in 1797 Praskovya Alexandrovna with their children moved to Kazan - a city in which Lobachevsky spent almost all his life. At that time, the population of Kazan did not exceed thirty thousand people, and the city was the center of the cultural life of the eastern lands of the Russian Empire.

Kazan gymnasium started working in the mid-eighteenth century. In the first set it was studying Gabriel Derzhavin, later recalled that the lack of good teachers and pupils made training program “although clumsily in the sciences, but giving some outstanding razvyaz.” In other words, the local high school ready for life secular. At the time of study in this institution Lobachevskian situation improved slightly. From now on education, according to the statute was aimed at preparing for military service. In 1802 Praskovya Alexandrovna handed over a petition with the request to take “at government kosht” her three sons: Alexander eleven, nine years and seven years of Nicholas Alexis. Separately, it is reported that poverty can not perform their adopted at the time donation to the school. Curiously, the high school entrance exams were not easy, but, judging from the letters, the mother hardly knew letter and could not prepare their own children. With all three of them were taken by this institution.

Further, in the comments.

26 June 2015

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