Sergei Korzhinskii

Korzhinskii, Sergei Ivanovich


Born Aug. 26 (Sept. 7), 1861, in Astrakhan; died Nov. 18 (Dec. 1), 1900, in St. Petersburg. Russian botanist; author of the theory of the advance of the forest zone into the steppes. Academician of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1896).

In 1885, Korzhinskii graduated from the University of Kazan. Between 1888 and 1892 he was a professor at the University of Tomsk. In 1892 he became the chief botanist at the St. Petersburg Botanical Garden, and in 1893, the director of the Botanical Museum of the Academy of Sciences.

Korzhinskii was the first to describe the vegetation of Middle Asia. He also proposed a general geobotanical regionalization of Russia. One of the founders of phytocoenology, Korzhinskii developed a geomorphological method of plant taxonomy and a method of historical analysis of floras. He also introduced the concept of “races” as the basic taxonomic category of plants. In 1898 he began publishing Gerbarii russkoi flory (Herbarium of Russian Flora). In 1899, independently of de Vries, Korzhinskii formulated the mutation theory (the theory of heterogenesis) as an alternative to Darwinism.


Berdyshev, G. D., and V. N. Siplivinskii. Pervyi sibirskii professor botaniki Korzhinskii: k 100-letiiu so dnia rozhdeniia. Novosibirsk, 1961. (Bibliography.)