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November 13, 1967


JAMA. 1967;202(7):648-649. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130200134027

The diverse accomplishments of Russian-born but German-educated Pirogoff firmly support the judgment of his biographers, who recognized him as the outstanding 19th century surgeon of his native country. Born in Moscow into a large family with an unstable fortune, Pirogoff gained his early education initially at home and later in a private school.1 At 14, he registered in the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Moscow and three years later was awarded the MD degree.2 Since academic standards were low compared to other European schools, additional training was gained at the newly founded University of Dorpat in Esthonia. Dorpat, strongly influenced by German science and pedagogy, performed a unique mission; the school was designed to provide basic training, by European standards, for prospective professors of Russian faculties. In addition, the professor-students soon acquired polish in an established school, with a preference for German institutions because of their