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Pavlov Pays Tribute to His Canine Colleague

Published: July 31, 2001 (Issue # 691)



  • Dog
    Photo: Sergey Grachev / The St. Petersburg Times

All too often, it seems, the animals that put their lives and dignity on the line for the sake of pushing back the frontiers of knowledge are quickly forgotten by history. Only a handful - such as Laika the space dog, Dolly the cloned sheep, or Koko, the gorilla who learned sign language - ever achieve the kind of prominence that their efforts merit.

To this list, however, one should add the creature depicted here, an animal known to history simply as "Pavlov's dog." This monument, located in the garden of the ominously named Institute of Experimental Medicine on the appropriately named Ul. Akademika Pavlova, actually salutes not just the dog who famously learned to salivate whenever a bell rang, but all the forgotten four-legged heroes of experimental medicine.

Perhaps more interestingly, the idea for the monument came from Pavlov himself. The great physiologist also approved its design in 1935 and wrote the moving inscription: "Although the dog - helpmate and friend of mankind since prehistoric times - may be sacrificed for science, our dignity demands that it be done only if absolutely necessary and without needless suffering. I. Pavlov."

Although Ivan Pavlov was born near Ryazan in 1849, his life and career are intimately associated with St. Petersburg where he lived from 1890 until his death in 1936. In addition to his studies of conditioning in animals, which were summarized in his 1926 treatise "Lectures on Conditioned Reflexes," and which served as the foundation of behavioral psychology, Pavlov conducted innovative research on circulation and digestion. He won the Nobel Prize for Physiology (now, Medicine) in 1904.

If one takes memorial plaques as the measure of distinction, Pavlov is among the most honored people ever to have lived in St. Petersburg. In addition to a plaque just a few steps away from the monument pictured here at the Institute of Experimental Medicine he is remembered at 1/2 Nab. Leitenanta Shmidta, where he was living when he died.

He is also commemorated at the Military Medicine Academy at 10 Ul. Komissara Smirnova and at 18 Bolshaya Pushkarskaya Ul. Finally, there is a plaque commemorating Pavlov at the Pavlov Institute of Physiology at 6 Nab. Makarova.





 


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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, Apr. 16


Learn more about AmCham’s efforts during the Joint Manufacturing, and Investment and Legal Committees Meeting today at 9 a.m. Check their website for more information about the event.


Today marks the beginning of IPhEB and CPhI Russia 2014, an international forum for the pharmaceutical industry and biotechnology that will be at LenExpo today and tomorrow. Those both already established in the industries and hoping to start a career are encouraged to attend and network with their colleagues.


Thursday, Apr. 17


Expocenter Eurasia at 13 Ulitsa Kapitan Voronin is the sight of Goods on the Way, a five-day event starting today showcasing the latest in the industrial products industry. Bags, backpacks, swimsuits and much, much more will be available to attendees hoping to update not only their style but their accessories for the upcoming summer.


Friday, Apr. 18


Teachers and students alike shouldn’t miss the opportunity to establish lasting contacts with Russian and foreign institutions during the 21st Education and Career Fair at LenExpo, beginning today and finishing tomorrow. Learn more about education in Russia and connect with your fellow scholars.


The Tromso International Film Festival, Norway’s largest, brings a short festival to St. Petersburg for one day only during Scandinavian Oddities, starting at 7 p.m. today at Rodina Cinema Center. Tickets for the event are 100 rubles ($2.80).


Sunday, Apr. 20


Celebrate Easter at Pavlovsk during the Easter Fair that begins today and continues through next Sunday. Visitors will have the chance to paint Easter eggs and children can take part in games as well as help decorate a tree in honor of Christianity’s holiest day.


Today is one of the final days to see the exhibit Cacti — Children of the Sun at the Peter the Great Botanical Garden. Starting Apr. 17, budding botanists will marvel at the variety and beauty of the desert’s most iconic plant.


Monday, Apr. 21


Improve your grasp of Neruda, Bolano and Marquez at TrueDA’s Beginners Spanish Lesson this evening at their location on the Petrograd Side. An experienced teacher will be on hand to help all attendees better understand the intricacies of the language and improve their accent.


Tuesday, Apr. 22


SPIBA’s Breakfast with the Director event series continues as the association welcomes Andrei Barannikov, general director of SPN Communications, to the Anna Pavlova Hall of the Angleterre Hotel this morning at 9 a.m. Attendees must confirm their participation by Apr. 21.


The AmCham Environment, Health and Safety Committee Meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. this morning in the their St. Petersburg office.