Lesia Ukrainka

Larissa Kossach (pen-name Lesia Ukrainka) was born in Novgorod-Volynsky on February 25, 1871 which is now in Zhytomir Region. Her father was a lawyer and her mother was a Ukrainian writer (pen-name Olena Pchilka). Her sister was married to Mykhailo Dragomanov, a scholar, public figure and political emigre, who was to play a great role in Lesia's life.

When Lesia was nine, her parents moved to the town of Lutsk and settled at an estate near Kovel. Because of weak health and the absence of school with instruction in the Ukrainian language, Lesia received education at home. She had a remarkable aptitude for the humanities.

Lesia's close ties with distinguished public and cultural figures of her time played a. positive role in her formation as a poet. Apart from Dragomanov and Franko, the Kossaches' friends included the composer M.Lysenko, the poet, playwright and one of the founders of the Ukrainian professional theatre N. Starytsky, the bibliographer M. Komarov, and the poet V. Samiylenko. Such a milieu made Lesia try her hand at writing poetry early. At the age of nine she wrote her first verses, and at 13 her first poem was published in the Lviv magazine "Zona". From then on her poetry appeared regularly in the Ukrainian publications.

Unfortunately, the outset of her literary career coincided with the first symptoms of what was then an incurable disease tuberculosis of the bones. Her poor health made her travel from one warm country to another Vienna, Crimea, Italy, Georgia, Egypt.

In 1893 her book of verse, "On Wings of Songs", was published. It was favorably received both by the readers and critics. Then followed her books of verse "Thoughts and Dreams", "Responses", which earned her, alongside I.Franko, a leading place in Ukrainian literature at the turn of this century. Just then she ' turned to playwiighting. Her first works of drama were based on subjects from the Bible. Among her best plays are "The Forest Song" and "The Stone Host".

Beginning with 1894 Lesia lived in Kiev. Here she started learning foreign languages. Later on she read and spoke English as well as Ukrainian. With a full command of German, French, Italian and English she could write not only prose, but also poetry in all these languages.

L.Ukrainka died on August 1, 1913 in Georgia, and was buried in Kiev. Her. works reveal the dominant feature of her talent exceptional public sensitivity and the ability to grasp and express in vivid images the idea the idea and tendencies of her time.

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The first centers of science in Old Rus were monasteries. Kyiv Mohyla Academy was one of such centers in the 17th century. In the 19 century the Universities of Kyiv; Kharkiv, Odesa and Lviv became research centers of Ukraine.

Much credit in the development of Ukrainian science is due to mathematician M. Ostrogradskyi /1801-1862/, linguist Osyp Bodiansky /1808-1877/, historian V. Antonovych /1834-1908/. O. Potebnia was an outstanding linguist, folklorist and literary scholar.

The creation of the Ukrainian Academy of Science in 1918 was an event of great importance. Among its founding members were noted naturalist V. Vernadsky and historian M. Hrushevsky. Associated with the Academy are the names of outstanding scientists 0. Potebnia, O. Bohomolets, M.Kholodnyi, B. Paton. At present, the National Academy of Science comprises 170 research centers. The National Academy of Ukraine ranks with Europe's leading scientific centers. Since 1962 its President has been Boris Paton, a noted scientists and organizer. A great deal has been done in the leading sciences over the past several years. World priority have first laser data storage, achievements in machine building, rocket and computer technology. The National Academy of Ukraine maintains international contacts with academies in many countries.

Academician Vernadsky /1863-/is the author of the fundamental studies on Earth, the chemical composition of atmosphere, the role of radioactive elements in the planet's evolution. His scientific findings are universally recognized. He is one of the founders of geochemistry and biogeochemistry.

Oleksandr Opanasovych Potebnia /1835-1891/ was very active in the Ukrainophile Kharkiv Hromada. He wrote a primer for Sunday schools and took part in folklore expeditions in Poltava Province. As a linguist Potebnia specialized in four areas: the philosophy of language, the historical phonetics, etymology, and Slavic historical syntax. O. Potebnia protested against denationalization and the Russification of Ukrainians. He was far ahead of his contemporaries. In 1945 the Institute of Linguistics was named after Oleksandr Potebnia.

Oleksandr Bohomolets /1881-1946/ was a founder of a large school of pathophysiologists. He developed the hypothesis that the course of a disease and

recovery depends on the resistance of organism. He demonstrated that connective tissue has a protective function in organism. He discovered a stimulant of connective tissue, which gained him worldwide fame. O. Bohomolets' wrote many works in biology, physiology, and pathology. He was president of the Academy of Science of Ukraine in 1930-46.

Yevhen Oskarowych Paton /1953/ was a prominent Ukrainian scientist in the field of bridge-building and welding. He wrote many works in the field of welding and founded the Ukrainian school of welding. In 1945-52 he was vice-president of the Academy of Science of Ukraine. One of the longest bridges across the Dnieper was named after academician Y. Paton.

Borys Yevhenovych Paton is a prominent Ukrainian scientist in the field of metallurgy and metal engineering, the author of numerous research discoveries. Based on his findings special electric metallurgy was created. The fundamentals of welding in outer space were developed. In 1962 Academician B. Paton became president of the Academy of Science of Ukraine.

In the field of the physical sciences Ukrainian scientists contributed much into development of world science. Many of them are known to the public at large but greater part remains unknown.

Ivan Poliui wrote in Ukraine the first textbook on Geometry and the book about stars and planets. He was a brilliant polyglot, he knew 15 languages and worked in Vienna in the field of electrical engineering, mathematics, astronomy, and philosophy. He was the first to discover invisible rays some decades earlier than Wilhelm Roentgen. He was the first to study the so-called "cold light".

Ihor Sikorsky designed the first multi-engine planes. In 1919 he emigrated to the USA. In 1939 he designed the first helicopter.

Ostap Stasiv graduated from Berlin University where he attended lectures of Max Plank and Albert Einstein. He founded the Institute of Crystal Physics in Berlin.

Olexandr Smakula worked in Germany and USA and made dozens of inventions. His quantity mathematical correlation is known in physics as Smakula's formula.

Heorhii Sharpak. Since 1954 he has been working in Geneva where he discovered a new type of nuclear particles detector. He was awarded with the Nobel Prize in physics.

Heorhii Gamov used quantum mechanics and explained alpha decay. He developed the cosmological theory of "Primary explosion". He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences /USA/.

Borys Hrabovskyi was one of the founders of the modern television. Together with his assistant I.Biliansky he designed the first in the world TV set. in July 1928, the image of his assistant appeared on the screen of the TV-set.

Hryhorii Kysunko was a designer of the first in the world anti-missile system, which was much better than American systems.

Leonid Vereshchahyn. The first synthetic diamonds were obtained under his leadership.

Anatolii Olexandrov created the first in the world atomic-powered vessel.

Anton Komar put into operation the first in the country betatron.

Petro Kapitsa made a great contribution into development of physics working in England and Russia. He was awarded with the Nobel Prize. The whole world knows Petro Kapitsa as a noted scientist in the field of nuclear physics.

Mykhailo Avenarius. The history of physics knows the Avenarius law.

Mykola Pylchykov /1857-1908/ made geological survey of the Kursk magnetic anomaly and studied radioactivity.

Heorhy Latyshev /1907-1973/ built the greatest in Europe electrostatic ' accelerator.

Kyrylo Synelnykov /19011966/ was born in Pavlograd.. His device fin-preserving plasma was later named after Synelnykov.

Olexandr Halkin organized in 1965 the Donetsk Institute of Physics and Technologies.

Olexandr Usykov was born in 1904 in Sumy area. He developed powerful impulse generators for radiolocation devices.

Ukrainian physics has a high prestige in the world. Mykola Kuvshynsky, professor of Kyiv University, has been included into the list of "500 most influential leaders". We must do all we can to support the fundamental science in Ukraine, to prevent it from decay.


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