Georgii Iakovlevich Sedov

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Sedov, Georgii Iakovlevich


Born Apr. 23 (May 5), 1877, in the village of Krivaia Kosa, now the settlement of Sedovo, Donetsk Oblast, Ukrainian SSR; died Feb. 20 (Mar. 5), 1914. Russian arctic explorer. Son of a fisherman.

In 1898, Sedov completed navigation studies in Rostov-on-Don and received the title of long-voyage navigator. In 1901 he passed the external-degree examination for the Naval Cadet School and was promoted to lieutenant. He took part in a hydrographic expedition to the Arctic Ocean in 1902 and 1903. In 1905, during the Russo-Japanese War. he commanded a torpedo boat. In 1909 he led an expedition to survey the mouth of the Kolyma River, and in 1910 he explored Krestovaia Bay off Novaia Zemlia.

In 1912, Sedov proposed an expedition by sledge to the north pole. The tsarist government refused to allot funds, however, and the expedition was financed by private sources. On Aug. 14 (27), 1912, the vessel Sv. Foka sailed from Arkhangel’sk, wintering near Novaia Zemlia because of impassable ice. The expedition approached Franz Josef Land in August 1913 but was forced to spend a second winter in Tikhaia Bay because of a lack of coal. On Feb. 2(15), 1914, Sedov, sick with scurvy, set out for the north pole with the seamen G. V. Linnik and A. M. Pustoshnyi and three dog sledges. He died before reaching Rudolf Island and was buried on Cape Auk on the island.

Many geographic features have been named after Sedov, including two gulfs and a peak on Novaia Zemlia, a glacier and a cape on Franz Josef Land, an island in the Barents Sea, and a cape in the antarctic; the icebreaker Georgii Sedov has also been named in his honor.


Puteshestvie v Kolymu i na Novuiu Zemliu v 1909–1910 gg. Petrograd, 1917.


Vize, V. Iu. “Georgii Iakovlevich Sedov.” In Russkie moreplavateli. Moscow, 1953.
Pinegin. N. V. Georgii Sedov (1877–1914),2nd ed. Moscow-Leningrad, 1953.
Cherniakhovskii, F.I. Georgii Iakovlevich Sedov. Arkhangel’sk, 1956.
Seleznev, S. A. Pervaia russkaia ekspeditsiia k Severnomu poliusu. [Arkhangel’sk] 1964.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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