Maievskii, Nikolai

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Maievskii, Nikolai Vladimirovich


Born Apr. 29 (May 11), 1823, in the village of Pervino, now Torzhok Raion, Kalinin Oblast; died Feb. 11 (23), 1892, in St. Petersburg; buried in Pervino. Russian scientist; specialist in artillery; corresponding member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1878); artillery general (1889).

Maievskii graduated from Moscow University in 1843 and the officers’ classes of Mikhail College in 1846. In 1850 he was appointed secretary of the artillery department of the Committee on Military Science (later the Artillery Committee), and in 1858 professor of ballistics at the Mikhail Artillery Academy and a member of the Artillery Committee. Maievskii was the founder of the Russian school of ballistics.

In his works on the external ballistics of oblong projectiles he created a well-composed theory of the rotary motion of the projectile and studied and for the first time explained the phenomenon of drift. Maievskii worked out a new method of composing firing tables, for the first time applied probability theory to the study of the results of firing, and formulated the monomial law of the resistance of air (the Maievskii law). He also participated in the design and production of rifled field and coastal artillery guns for the rearmament of the Russian Army in the 1860’s to the 1880’s. Maievskii was twice the recipient of the Mikhail Prize (1859 and 1866).


O vliianii vrashchatel’nogo dvizheniia na polet prodolgovatykh snariadov v vozdukhe. St. Petersburg, 1865.
Kurs vneshnei ballistiki St. Petersburg, 1870.


Zabudskii, N. [A]. “General ot artillerii Nikolai Vladimirovich Maievskii” (obituary). Artilleriiskii zhurnal, 1892, no. 4.
Mandryka, A. P. Nikolai Vladimirovich Maievskii. Moscow, 1954. (Includes bibliography.)
Trifonov, V. “Osnovopolozhnik russkoi ballisticheskoi shkoly (k 150-letiiu so dnia rozhdeniia N. V. Maievskogo).” Voenno-istoricheskii zhurnal, 1973, no. 5.


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