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Sewertzoff Nachruf


Sewertzoff Nachruf



Bio Morphosis 1(5): 404-416



This is a comprehensive appreciation of the life and work of the famous zoologist and anatomist, founder of the huge Moscow "Academic Institute for Evolutional Morphology" now called "A. N. Sewertzoff Institute" in his memory. In his excellent studies on the reduction of organs (1931) he set up morph. series, coining some important terms of developmental mechanics. Independently of Sedgewick, he recognized the great importance of embryogenetic alterations during phylogeny ("phylembryogenesis"). On the notion of "homology" he wrote (Oct. 26, 1933) the following unpublished statements to the necrologist Marcus "There are 2 kinds of homology, 1) a general, mainly histologic homology (homology of the material), and 2) a special homology (homology of form and organ structure). To the major part the former kind of homology is phylogeneti-cally primary, the latter secondary." Thia conception he intended to verify by means of skeletal investigations, but it is not certain whether he had published anything about this subject in his last Russian papers. The main work of his life was his theoretical book "Morphological laws of evolution" (1931) which he finished just before his death in 1936. A complete list of his papers (written in English, French and German) is added; he also published about 30 treatises in Russian.

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