Dmitrii Mushketov

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Dmitrii Mushketov
Born (1882-03-31)March 31, 1882
Died February 18, 1938(1938-02-18) (aged 55)
Nationality  Russia
Fields Geology
Institutions Saint Petersburg Mining Institute

Dmitrii Ivanovich Mushketov (Russian: Дмитрий Иванович Мушкетов) (31 March [O.S. 19 March] 1882 – 18 February 1938) was a Russian geologist and paleontologist who was born in St Petersburg, the son of Ivan Vasil'yevich Mushketov, a famous explorer and professor at the Mining Institute. This brilliant geologist was one of the victims of the Great Terror.

His early education by his mother, Ekaterina Pavlovna Mushketova, gave him a fluency in German, French, and English, which allowed him later in life to travel to Western Europe, to correspond with foreign specialists, and to represent Soviet geology abroad. He entered the Mining Institute in 1899 and graduated with honours in 1907.[1]

D. I. Mushketov's geological interests were very wide including the worldwide study of tectonics and seismology, but he concentrated his work in Central Asia, covering also the fields of stratigraphy, geomorphology, glaciers, and mineral resources. His scholarly output was prodigious, with "more than 50 scientific works, several textbooks and manuals included, before 1926".[1] Between 1909 and 1916 he carried out the geological survey of eastern Fergana which contributed to the geological map of Central Asia. His name is particularly well known for the high-quality revisions and additions that he made to each edition of the textbook on physical geology that was originally written by his father (published in 1888-91).[2]

Time line[1]

Attained Master of Science degree, 1915
Appointed director of the Mining Institute, 1918
Participated at the International Geological Congress (XIII, Belgium), 1922
Director of the Geological Committee, 1926–1929
Participated at the International Geological Congress (XIV, Spain), 1926
Entrusted with making a bid for the International Geological Congress (XVI) to take place in the USSR in 1933, 15 Feb 1927
Chairman of the Organizing Committee for the Third All-Russia Geological Congress in Tashkent, 1928
Participated at the International Geological Congress (XV, South Africa), 1929
Forbidden to attend the International Geological Congress (XVI, USA), 1933; The Soviet delegation to the congress was lead instead by Ivan Gubkin
Awarded honorary Doctorate in Geology and Mineralogy from the Mining Institute, 1936
Arrested, June 29, 1937
International Geological Congress began (XVII, Moscow), July 21, 1937, under the leadership of Ivan Gubkin


In response to an official request for information filed by the Commission on Geological Study of the USSR March 29, 1962, the following information was provided by the Military Board of the USSR Supreme Court, May 31, 1962:[1]

D. I. Mushketov was sentenced to death and executed February 18, 1938. He was fully exonerated (rehabilitated), posthumously, December 8, 1956.

Several colleagues were executed on the same day; among them was G. N. Frederiks.[3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Yu. Ya. Solov'ev (2007) "On the 125th birthday of Dmitrii Ivanovich Mushketov (1882–1938)". Stratigraphy and Geological Correlation. 15(4):443–448.
  2. I. V. Mushketov and D. I. Mushketov (1935) Physical geology, 4th edition, St Petersburg (in Russian).
  3. J. A. Talent, N. W. Archbold, V. Z. Machlin (1995). "Georgiy Nikolaevich Frederiks (1889-1938), paleontologist, stratigrapher, tectonist - biography and bibliography". Earth Sciences History. 14(2):137–171.

Further reading

Yu. Ya. Solov'ev (2001) " 'Only the Ministry of Internal Affairs Knows the Date of His Death ...'. Dmitrii Ivanovich Mushketov (1882–1938)," Voprosy istorii Estestvoznaniya i Tekhniki (Problems of the History of Natural Sciences and Technology), 2:75–92.