It happened on JANUARY 26

1943

Nikolai Ivanovich Vavilov died in Saratov, Russia. A botanist and geneticist, at Lenin’s request and with Lenin’s backing, he organized and directed the State Institute for experimental agriculture in St. Petersburg, creating a network of hundreds of agricultural centers across the Soviet Union. He held varies offices, among them director of the Genetics Institute at the Academy of Science in St. Petersburg, which, due to his prestige, came to be a research destination for scientists from all over the world. Although Vavilov contributed greatly to the prestige of Soviet science, and spread the Soviet communist materialistic perspective, his disagreement with the biologist Lysenko, who was supported by Stalin, led to the loss of all his positions and his being accused of spying on behalf of Western countries. The death sentence originally given him was commuted to ten years imprisonment, beginning in 1941, of which he served only two years, dying in 1943 of an unknown cause. A geneticist of worldwide fame, Vavilov oversaw the Russian translations of Mendel’s and Darwin’s works.

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The Encyclopedia, published by the Centro di Documentazione Interdisciplinare di Scienza e Fede operating at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome, provides new, scholarly articles in the rapidly growing international field of Religion and Science (ISSN: 2037-2329).

In order to make some relevant documents better known in the scientific community, the section provides key materials for study and reflection concerning the dialogue among science, philosophy, and theology.