Military Review

"Unlearned scientist" Jacob Perelman

The fascinating books of Yakov Isidorovich Perelman were published in huge editions and instantly found their readers. However, their author was not a writer.

His cunning tasks with enthusiasm were solved by children and adults, Perelman devoted his whole life to serving science. However, he also never called himself a scientist and did not have any degrees or titles.

He created a unique museum of living physics and mathematics, which was not empty for a minute during working hours. And at the same time he called himself "just an amateur to think".

“This traction lives in me since childhood,” Perelman admitted. “My father was a bookkeeper, and I fell in love with the numbers” ...

Indeed, the father of the future popularizer of science served as an accountant at the cloth factory of the city of Bialystok, Grodno province (now the Republic of Belarus). The family lived very hard. But it was even harder for them when Isidor Perelman died suddenly. Family cares fell on the shoulders of the mother, a primary school teacher. And she managed not only to feed her family, but also to give her two sons a good education.
Yakov (the younger son) graduated from the Belostok Real School, and after him the St. Petersburg Forest Institute. Perelman was a very good teacher, no one doubted that an excellent specialist would come out of this young man. Moreover, the activity of Yakov Isidorovich as a popularizer of science began ... in his school years.

So, in 1899, in the newspaper "Grodno provincial news" an article appeared by an unknown author at that time - Ya.P. (by the way, Perelman often signed his essays and articles for almost his whole life, and he had 11 aliases altogether). It was called “About the expected fiery rain” and was the answer to a certain magistrate, who dared to “scientifically” predict the world the soonest end. A novice schoolboy not only debunked all the arguments of his opponent, but he did it so easily and gracefully that almost the entire circulation was read out literally to the holes.

But back to the time of the student body. The first literary and scientific experience inspired the young author so much that he very soon wrote a new article, this time to the journal Nature and People. Cooperation with this edition will last for many years, in 1904, Perelman will become his executive secretary. And all this time, his work will be of great interest to readers. Moreover, it is thanks to Yakov Isidorovich that some works of KE Tsiokolvsky will be published in the journal.

However, despite the enthusiastic, painstaking and multifaceted work, Perelman-student struggled to make ends meet. Earned fees are clearly not enough to pay for their studies. And then the popularizer of science turned for help to the director of the institute. And he, taking into account the brilliant abilities and successes of his student, freed him from paying for the first half of the academic year 1902-03.

In the 1908 year, Perelman graduated with honors from the institute, he was awarded the title “1 forest scientist level”. However, he did not work in his specialty.

But four years later, the first part saw the light of the immediately famous “Entertaining Physics”. There is no need to talk about how fascinating this book is, because it has been republished more than thirty times, with huge editions. However, it is very good that readers and critics immediately recognized the talent of the author. "Entertaining Physics" was purchased at once by several St. Petersburg universities. The success of the book turned out to be so great that it inspired Yakov Isidorovich to create new masterpieces: “Entertaining geometry”, “Entertaining arithmetic”, “Entertaining astronomy”, “Entertaining mechanics” ...

"Unlearned scientist" Jacob Perelman

During his life, Perelman has written over a hundred popular science books!

Moreover, Yakov Isidorovich never stopped working in magazines. In the publication Nature and People, he labored 17 for years. He initiated the creation of a collection of stories and stories "World of Adventures." Here were published the works of Jules Verne, Arthur Conan Doyle, Edgar Poe ...

Yakov Isidorovich was engaged in research and teaching activities, developing new study guides in physics, mathematics, astronomy, and taught in various educational institutions. After the October Revolution, all former popular science publications were closed; it was necessary to create new ones. So, thanks to Perelman, the magazine “In the workshop of nature” was published, with which K. Tsiolkovsky later collaborated.

By the way, it was Perelman who suggested, in order to save fuel, to switch the clock hands to the so-called “summer time”. He was engaged in the development of the first Soviet anti-hail rocket and created its project.

In 1915, Yakov Isidorovich met a doctor, Anna Davidovna Kaminska, and soon the young people got married. They rented an apartment on Plutalovskaya street, in the house number XXUMX. And from that day on, Perelman indicated this address in all his books.

In 1935, a scientist (because he is a scientist after all!) Created the House of Entertaining Science in Leningrad, in the former palace of Count Sheremetyevo, and became its scientific leader. It was one of the most amazing museums in the world. Instead of the well-known inscriptions “Do not touch your hands!” And “Do not enter the fence!” Here all the exhibits are not only possible, but you had to touch, twist and even try to break.

Miracles began right at the entrance. From the grid of the gate on the pavement, a wide white stripe led to the entrance door. And near the door of the guests met a stone column with a sign: “Own meridian of the House of entertaining science. Coordinates..."

And then the guests were “awaited” by such a poster: “When midnight comes to Honolulu, it will be noon in Leningrad. At this hour, the doors of the House of entertaining science open every day, in which they will tell you about time, about Earth, about the sky. About numbers, about color, about sound and about many other things. ”

Trade scales here guessed any conceived number or surname. In the cupboard from the bottle, which stood in pieces of crushed ice, poured boiling tea. A seemingly metal teaspoon melted faster than sugar, which she stirred! (the spoon was molded from Wood alloy melting at 68 temperatures of degrees Celsius).

It was very interesting for children and adults to push metal balls hung on threads, to leave their shadow on a special screen, even moving away from it; to look through binoculars at their feet (barely trying to raise the left, after it itself rises and right). And what a delight caused the mockup of a starship installed in the astronomy hall! They were invited to climb, shut the door and start the “flight”.

In the museum one could see Maxwell's pendulum, the two-meter model of the rocket “according to Tsiolkovsky’s own sketch”, Galton’s board ... There were more than five hundred amazing exhibits in total! There was even a Jules Verne Hall!

And even the guestbook was surprising: as soon as the visitor sat at the table, she opened on the right page.

It is not surprising that visitors did not know the end. The guides worked in each hall, who explained all wonders with pleasure and affordably.
The scientist devoted all his free time to the museum, the exposition was constantly expanding, it was already planned to open the hall of entertaining linguistics. Active work was carried out on the publication of miniature popular science books on various branches of science and technology.

But the Great Patriotic War began ... The museum had to be closed in its first days, June 29. Many employees, including director V. Kamsky (he died on the Volkhov front), lecturers, and artist went to the front.
Many expositions were buried in the garden near the Fountain House, according to some information, some were evacuated to the Urals, but almost the entire museum died in the besieged city.

January 18 The 1942 of the year Anna Davidovna died from exhaustion while on duty at the hospital.
Jacob Isidorovich Perelman outlived his spouse by just two months: he died of starvation in the besieged Leningrad 16 of March 1942. He died, until the last day of his work on how to help soldiers navigate the terrain, which should have been useful to them during the fighting ...

The material used articles from the magazine "People's Education" for 1979 year.
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  1. miv110
    miv110 2 October 2015 06: 45
    Interesting and necessary material from a series about half-forgotten or almost forgotten our domestic geniuses that make up the Russian Intellectual Fund, thanks to which many other excellent specialists have been educated and thanks to whom our state still lives on!
    1. Baloo
      Baloo 2 October 2015 20: 56
      I would love to buy the whole series of Perelman for my grandson.
  2. strelets
    strelets 2 October 2015 06: 58
    Thank you for reminding us of these wonderful books. It is necessary to give the child to read. You’ll be interested.
  3. Flinky
    Flinky 2 October 2015 07: 03
    I love Perelman's books, especially Entertaining Physics. And I will try to convey them to the children.
    1. Altona
      Altona 2 October 2015 09: 39
      Quote: Flinky
      I love Perelman's books, especially Entertaining Physics. And I will try to convey them to the children.

      I also read this interesting book, my father brought me from a business trip in childhood ...
    2. atalef
      atalef 4 October 2015 00: 05
      Quote: Flinky
      I love Perelman's books, especially Entertaining Physics. And I will try to convey them to the children.

      I still remember, "living mathematics", "entertaining physics" - desk books of childhood
  4. AlNikolaich
    AlNikolaich 2 October 2015 07: 27
    The main merit of Perelman is the popularization of science! And the value of his works, not only in their interest,
    but how many people became scientists, starting with reading his entertaining books!
    1. Mareman Vasilich
      Mareman Vasilich 2 October 2015 08: 24
      He, like Kapitsa, could convey to a simple layman science in a simple formulation so that people became interested.
  5. Million
    Million 2 October 2015 07: 27
    These are the Jews I respect!
    1. ICT
      ICT 2 October 2015 07: 55

  6. parusnik
    parusnik 2 October 2015 08: 05
    I read his books with great interest, sorry, now it is not visible on bookshelves .. Thank you, wonderful article!
    1. miv110
      miv110 2 October 2015 08: 11
      +6 Сеть магазинов Читай-Город ,большое количество недавно переизданных книг Я.И.Перельмана.
  7. Arjuna
    Arjuna 2 October 2015 08: 42
    Lump! Man! I read his entertaining books. Did not save
  8. Dragon-y
    Dragon-y 2 October 2015 08: 43
    If you do not find it in the "paper" form - look in the "electronic" form, they are.
  9. Reptiloid
    Reptiloid 2 October 2015 10: 24
    [quote = TIT] .................

    [Dear TIT !!! To say that you liked the video --- means to say nothing ... The article caused sorrow, your video --- tenderness. I read His books from childhood, then --- bought in a second-hand book. Thank you so much for the video, all this was in our City.
    The author of the article is my eternal gratitude and respect for what I wrote about this great man.
    1. ICT
      ICT 2 October 2015 18: 59
      Well, this is not for me, but for YouTube and a friend who posted this video ON YOUR CHANNEL (he needs to put likes there), I put up a modestly modest request and brought it to us

      by the way, the first two videos are so tender, but the third with the "cartoon" I also liked

      I didn’t read books. I didn’t come across request
  10. Aaron Zawi
    Aaron Zawi 2 October 2015 14: 21
    Do you respect those? wink
    1. Alex
      Alex 3 October 2015 23: 57
      Quote: Aron Zaavi
      Do you respect those?

      And for that?
  11. Crimson cloud
    Crimson cloud 2 October 2015 15: 46
    Awesome books, amazing person. Thanks to the author. It will be necessary for the children to find it - mine still remained in good condition.
    And it's great that they are reprinted, judging by the comments.
  12. Volga Cossack
    Volga Cossack 2 October 2015 17: 28
    I remember entertaining physics from childhood, a wonderful book! and the author is wonderful. Thanks for the article, reminded!
  13. NordUral
    NordUral 2 October 2015 17: 53
    One can only envy such a fate. I immediately remembered the school and his books.
  14. moskowit
    moskowit 2 October 2015 21: 27
    Great article.
    None of his books published his biography. Many thanks. I have a book in my library called Entertaining Mathematics. I got acquainted with the work of the author at the age of 10. The older guys (as I later understood), after reading the book "Entertaining Physics", made up various subject riddles. I especially remember how to connect three glasses with three knives ... Or how to circle nine points located in a square with one continuous line ... I was lucky to see this book when I was 22 years old, I read it with undisguised pleasure.
  15. Raider
    Raider 3 October 2015 00: 04
    With this approach to business, no USE is scary and computers. When the material is given so interesting. Peterson "rests" with his math, which is not something that children, adults go crazy about. And this is in primary school. Somehow in his hearts, at a meeting, he shouted (about the author Peterson): "He had no children, the teacher politely corrected:" She has! "I slipped into a chair ... And the point of both authors is to develop logical thinking, so why did they invent bicycle, when there is "entertaining" Perelman with "entertaining" objects. Article + unambiguously. WONDERFUL AND "INTERESTING" PERSON - PERELMAN.
  16. abrikos_45
    abrikos_45 3 October 2015 03: 52
    His "Physics" and "Mathematics" are still at home.
  17. Oslyabya
    Oslyabya 3 October 2015 14: 08
    Thank you so much for the material about the Man!
    I have already bought a collection of books by Perelman "Entertaining ..." for my daughters (several disciplines)