◀ ▲ ▶History / 19th-century / Person: Ostrogradski, Mikhail Vasilevich
Person: Ostrogradski, Mikhail Vasilevich
Mikhail Ostrogradski worked on hydrodynamics, elasticity, heat and electricity.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Let us record at this point the fact that Ostrogradski's name is often given in one of the three forms: Ostrogradski, Ostrogradskii, or Ostrogradsky.
- Ostrogradski did not shine in his academic subjects at the Gymnasium.
- When the time came for him to leave, Ostrogradski expressed a wish to have a military career.
- Ostrogradski entered the University of Kharkov in 1816 and, after a preparatory year, began to study physics and mathematics in 1817.
- Another who influenced Ostrogradski at this time was Timofei Fedorovic Osipovsky who was both a professor of mathematics and the rector of the University of Kharkov.
- In 1820 Ostrogradski took and passed the exams necessary for his degree but the minister of religious affairs and national education refused to confirm the decision and required him to retake the examinations.
- This had a rather serious consequence for Ostrogradski who had been examined by Osipovsky in 1820, for, following Osipovsky's dismissal, the Ministry of Education refused to confirm the award of Ostrogradski's doctorate.
- The leading mathematical centre in the world at this time was Paris and Ostrogradski made the bold decision to study there, arriving in May 1822.
- In this paper Ostrogradski states and proves the general divergence theorem.
- Gauss, nor knowing about Ostrogradski's paper, proved special cases of the divergence theorem in 1833 and 1839 and the theorem is now often named after Gauss.
- The latter presentation was the only one published by Ostrogradski, appearing in 1831 in 'Note sur la Théorie de la Chaleur Ⓣ(Note on the theory of heat) (1831).' The two earlier presentations have survived only in manuscript form, though they have been published in Russian translation.
- Many of Ostrogradski's papers which he wrote in Paris were later incorporated in a major work on hydrodynamics with he published in Paris in 1832.
- Ostrogradski, unable to pay the bills for his accommodation, ended up badly in debt.
- He was taken to court for non-payment, but Cauchy, hearing of Ostrogradski's difficulties, paid off all his debts.
- Cauchy then managed to get Ostrogradski a position teaching at the Collège Henri IV (today called Lycée Henri-IV) so he could continue living in Paris.
- describes four manuscripts dating from Ostrogradski's Paris residence (1822-1827) and discovered by Yushkevich in the French Academy archives in 1963.
- The first two of those manuscripts (1824) are on definite integrals and document Ostrogradski's role in the development of Cauchy's method of residues.
- Ostrogradski left France and went to St Petersburg, arriving in the spring of 1828.
- This was the July revolution of 1830 and Ostrogradski seriously damaged one of his eyes towards the end of his visit.
- Ostrogradski aimed high in his research and his objective was to provide a combined theory of hydrodynamics, elasticity, heat and electricity.
- All of these results were eventually repeated by other mathematicians with no credit to Ostrogradski.
- Ostrogradski was a big tall man with a loud voice.
- Ostrogradski knew many of Shevchenko's works by heart and often recited them.
- Ostrogradski met Shevchenko in 1858 when the poet came to stay with him.
- we went together with Semen to M V Ostrogradski's.
- Finally let us mention the remarkable work that Ostrogradski did on insurance towards the end of his life.
- For this reason, both mathematicians who were members of the St Petersburg Academy of Sciences, Ostrogradski and Bunyakovsky, were included in the committee charged with drawing up a charter of the fund.
- The transactions of the committee were published without delay; they contain a remarkable note by Ostrogradski ...
- It must have pained Ostrogradski greatly to see Russia and France on opposing sides.
- Always a Ukrainian at heart, Ostrogradski specified in his will that he should be buried in his home village of Pashennaya.
Born 24 September 1801, Pashennaya (now Poltava oblast), Ukraine. Died 1 January 1862, Poltava (now Ukraine).
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Geometry, Origin Ukraine
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive