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English and Other Foreign Languages in the Life of Waldemar Haffkine, Famous Scientist

Nicolas is interested in the history of science. He studies the role of foreign languages in the career of future doctors.

Monument to W. Haffkine in Berdiansk, Ukraine

Monument

Monument

Gymnasium of Berdiansk

  • Waldemar Haffkine was studying in Berdiansk, man's Gymnasium. He was graduated from this establishment in 1879.
  • If you meet with the analytic table about the composition of pupils as to their origin and religion, you can see great diversity.
  • There were pupils of the Orthodox church and also of Catholic, Judaic, Armenian-Gregorian ones, etc. This diversity of religions and languages promoted his interest in languages. Also, in-school timetable there were ancient languages, Greek and Latin, modern languages such as French and German.
  • In this plan, Berdiansk is a specific town.
Gymnasium

Gymnasium

W.Haffkine, Example of Linguistic Personality

TypologyLanguagesDegree of Possession

Semitic

Ivrit(Modern Hebrew)

Fluently

Slavic

Russian

Fluently

Slavic

Ukrainian

Fluently

Italic

French

Fluently

Germanic

English

Fluently

Germanic

German

Was learning

Germanic

Dutch

Was learning

Semitic

Arab

Was learning

Indo-Iranian

Sanskrit

Was learning

Ancient language

Ancient Greek

Was learning

Ancient language

Latin

Was learning

A Fateful Meeting

  • I'd like to point out a real fateful meeting for W. Haffkine with Lord Dufferin, thanks to his knowledge of English too. The matter was that in 1892 L. Pasteur wanted to pass field research on the population of Russia, but didn't receive permission from the tsar's government. Then he paid attention to Siam.
  • In that case, L. Pasteur was consulted by Hirshman, a French resident of Indochina, that Haffkine would meet a lot of difficulties in Siam. Hirshman met Haffkine with Lord Dufferin, British Ambassador to France, and a former Viceroy of India (1884-1888).
  • Lord Dufferin helped Haffkine to make acquaintance with Lord John Kimberley, Secretary of State for India. In his turn, he received Haffkine very warmly and permitted him to reach any region of India for inoculating residents by the anti- cholera vaccine. There was under the condition that all processes ought to be voluntary. Of course, talking was in English, which Haffkine was studying living in Europe.
  • That voyage was supplied by the funds of W. Haffkine and his friends.
    There was before India, Haffkine showed a series of techniques on injecting in the pathological laboratory of Professor A. Wright, London, and the Army Medical School at Netley. Moreover, I want to say that R.Kipling's poem " One Viceroy resigns” was dedicated to Lord Dufferin.

Haffkine's Stalactites or Limpha Haffkina

Stalactites

Stalactites

The Text Meat Broth as an Example of Medical Terms in English. They Are Underlined

The interesting moment for me in the history of science is the following. Haffkine worked out a method of growing Bacteria of Pasteurella Pestis in meat broth. He proposed and used a layer of molten ghee or coconut oil under it.

Those bacteria were growing in the form of threads, from the top to the bottom of the bottle. Now we know it as “Haffkine’s Stalactites”. Haffkine killed the bacteria heating them after a fortnight of growing. As a result, the vaccine was ready, a vaccine of Haffkine against cholera and the plague, called Limfa Haffkina. It is an eponym, medical term, originated from the name of its inventor.

Technical moments are as follows:
GROWTH IN MEAT BROTH to which a minute quantity of sterile coconut had added. It did using of a platinum needle, 37-5 C·, 48 hours. Stalactites are well- marked.

There Is in Mumbai (Former Bombay). Advertising of Haffkine's Institute in Sanskrit and English

Main Works of Waldemar Haffkine Written in English

YearsTitlesEdition

1886

On the question of nnutrition of Euglena and Astasia

Repts. Novrossisk Soc. Naturalistis

1887

On the laws of heredity as applied to unicellular organisms.

Repts. Novrossisk Soc. Naturalists

1893

Vaccination against Asiatic cholera.

Indian med. Gaz. (Calcutta), April

1894 and 1895

Anti-cholera inoculation in India.

Trans. First Indian Med. Congess Calkutta, Dec. 28. Indian med. Gaz., Hanuary and March

1897

Remarks on the plague prophylactic fluid.

Brit. med. J., 1, 461

1899

On preventive inoculations. Proc. R. Soc., 65, 1899.

Lancet, June 24, 1899. Brit.

The Letter of W. Haffkine in English

The letter of W.Haffkine to Khan

The letter of W.Haffkine to Khan

Hebrew and English Are the Core of Waldemar Haffkine' Success as Polyglot

  • Knowledge of Hebrew provides direct access to the Bible, over 3,000 years of cultural activity. It means a better understanding of the development of English and even a possible key to comparative linguistics, as the example of Waldemar Haffkine did.
  • The translation of the Bible into English directly from Hebrew made a major influence over the English language. When we use expressions such as a "heavy heart" or idioms like "the skin of his teeth," "a drop in the bucket," or employ certain superlatives; "Holy of Holies" (Kodesh hakedushim), King of Kings (Meleh hamelahim), Song of Songs (Shir hashirim), we do repeating a word-for-word translation of the Hebrew Bible. The knowledge of this language helped the doctor to become the polyglot.
  • Moreover, this fact explains why Jews have so great ability in learning foreing languages.


The Importance of Foreign Languages in Our Times and the Battle Against New Pandemics

  • Cholera remains a global health problem nowadays. The seventh cholera pandemic spread from Indonesia to other countries. It was arisen by El Nor stain in Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin America. In 2013, it marked 400,000 cases and over 4000 deaths in 1991 [WHO, 2013]. In 2020, we have a new disease - Coronavirus with the unpredictable speed of spreading.
  • In many cases it depends on unsanitary conditions in slums, especially on contaminated drinking water. The cultural Eastern phenomena intensify this disease as well. It says about different fairs, pilgrimage, some religious rites. The problem of knowledge of foreign languages needs to decide. This is the necessary condition for successful communication. It would say, there are the same problems with which W. Haffkine was conflicting in the XIX century. The scientific success of this doctor-bacteriologist confirms the bright unity of the linguistic personality and the medical genius.







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