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Famous Polish
discoverers,
travelers
and scientists

Please also visit page Polish-origin Nobel Prize Laureates
Ajdukiewicz
Kazimierz
1890
1963
Logician, philosopher - the creator of, so called, fundamental conventionalism and semantic language theory
Arctowski
Henryk
1871
1958
Globetrotter, geophysicist, geographer - expert in polar regions
Banach
Stefan
1892
1945
Mathematician - he founded modern functional analysis and made major contributions to the theory of topological vector spaces; he contributed to measure theory, integration, and orthogonal series; co-author of Banach's algebra, Banach's space
Banachiewicz
Tadeusz
1882
1954
Astronomer, geodesist, mathematician - creator of cracovian theory, he developed and applied chronokinematographic method for observation of Sun eclipse
Bryla
Stefan
1886
1943
Construction engineer, welding pioneer - the designer of, among others, the first in Europe welded road bridge on the Sludwia River (1927) and high rise building Prudential in Warszawa (1932)
Cebertowicz
Romuald Adam
1897
1981
Hydrotechnician - the creator of electro-injection method of soil solidification
Cieszkowski
August
1814
1894
Philosopher, economist - the creator of, so called, philosophy of action
Czekanowska-Kuklinska
Anna,
daughter of Jan
1929
Musicologist, ethnographer - she applied statistical-mathematical methods for analysis of folk music
Czekanowski
Aleksander
1833
1876
Geologist, geographer - explorer of north-eastern regions of Asia
Czekanowski
Jan
1882
1965
Anthropologist, ethnologist - he applied mathematical statistics in anthropological research, ethnographic research in Central Africa
Czerski
Jan
1845
1892
Geologist, geographer - explorer of Siberia, especially Lake Baikal; creator of geological map of Lake Baikal
Czochralski
Jan
1885
1953
Metalurgist, metal researcher - creator of the pulling crystal method, he studied the velocity of metal crystalization
Danysz
Jan Kazimierz
1884
1914
Physicist - assistant of M.Curie-Sklodowska, creator of the first spectrometer beta
Danysz
Marian
1909
Physicist - co-discoverer of hypernuclei and hypernuclear isomery
Dega
Wiktor
1896
1995
Orthopeadic surgeon - a pioneer of medical rehabilitation for motion organ
Dietl
Jozef
1804
1878
Physician - pioneer of balneology
Dobrowolski
Antoni Boleslaw
1872
1954
Geophysist, polar regions explorer, educationist - the organiser of Polish meteorology survey, ice expert
Domeyko
Ignacy
1802
1889
Mineralogist, geologist, member of a secret student society at Vilno University - he created scientific foundations for exploitation of natural resources in Chile and established a network of meteorological stations
Doroszewski
Witold Jan
1899
1976
Linguist - specialist in Polish philology, word-formation, dialectology and semantics, editor of Polish Language Dictionary (11 volumes)
Drzewiecki
Stefan
1844
1938
Scientist and inventor, mainly in aviation and ship building - he developed theory of gliding flight, developed a method for manufacture of ship and plane propellers (1892), presented a general theory for screw-propeller thurst (1920)
Dybowski
Benedykt
1833
1930
Zoologist - explorer of East Siberia (1865-79), he discovered many species of endemic fauna in Lake Baikal, co-founder of limnology
Dybowski
Jan
1856
1928
Globetrotter - explorer of Africa, especially Equatorial Africa
Dylik
Jan
1905
1973
Geographer, geomorphologist - explore of Spitsbergen, expert in permafrost geomorphology
Estreicher
Alojzy Rafal
1786
1852
Botanist, entomologist - he made the Botanical Graden in Cracow flourish
Estreicher
Karol Sr.,
son of Alojzy Rafal
1827
1908
Librarian, bibliographer, historian of literature and theater - the creator of Polish Bibliography - a register of the whole Polish literature (from XV to XIX century)
Estreicher
Karol Jr.
son of Stanislaw
1906
Historian of art, bibliographer - finished Polish Bibliography
Estreicher
Stanislaw
son of Karol Sr.
1869
1939
Historian of law, bibliographer - continuator of Polish Bibliography
Estreicher
Tadeusz
son of Karol Sr.
1871
1952
Chemist, historian of chemistry - expert in low temperatures
Falski
Marian
1881
1974
Educationist - the author of the famous elementary book Nauka pisania i czytania (Learning to write and read)
Funk
Kazimierz
1884
1967
Biochemist - he intorduced name vitamin, the creator of the vitamin science, he isolated the first vitamin
Gloger
Zygmunt
1845
1910
Ethnographer, archeologist, historian - the author of Old-Polish Encyclopedia (4 volumes)
Godlewski
Aleksander
1905
1975
Ethnographer - expert in ethnogenesis of nations of Oceania and Australia
Godlewski
Emil Sr.
1847
1930
Physiologist of plants - expert in photosynthesis, respiratory and water movement in plants
Godlewski
Emil Jr.
1875
1944
Embryologist, physician - expert in regeneration and physiology of conception, showed the significance of cytoplasm in hereditary processes
Goetel
Walery
1889
1972
Geologist - expert in the Tatra Mountains, co-originator of Tatra, Pieniny and Babia Gora National Parks
Gruca
Adam
1893
Orthopeadic surgeon - he developed new surgery methods as well as orthopeadic tools and apparatus
Grzybowski
Jozef
1869
1922
Geologist, paleaonthologist - the first on the world who applied micropaleaonthological methods in investigation of stratigraphy of oil-bearing series
Gzowski
Kazimierz
1813
1898
Construction engineer - he organized a company that build Grand Trunk Railway from Toronto to Sarnia 1853-57, and an international bridge across the Niagara River at Fort Erie in 1873; founder of Canadian Society of Civil Engineers in 1887
Hermaszewski
Miroslaw
1941
Pilot - the first Polish astronaut (1978)
Heweliusz
Jan
1611
1687
Astronomer - the creator of Astronomical Observatory in Gdansk (1640), he constructed the biggest telescope in XVII century (lenght 50 m), elaborated maps of the Moon, discovered changes in magnetic declination
Hirszfeld
Ludwik
1884
1954
Doctor of serology, immunologist - co-author of hematology, started seroanthropology, commenced research into pathology of pregnancy (in Poland), discovered bacillus of paratyphoid fever C
Hirszfeld
Ludwik Maurycy
1816
1876
Physician, anatomist - author of well-known academic book on anatomy of nervous system (in French)
Huber
Maksymilian Tytus
1872
1950
Mechanical engineer - developed hypothesis of endurance materials fundamental to strength of materials, so called Huber hypothesis
Infeld
Leopold
1898
1968
Theoretical physisist - co-worker with Albert Einstein, specialist in the field of theory of relativity
Ingarden
Roman
1852
1927
Hydrotechnician - he designed and built water services in Cracow, developed a general plan of the flood-control of the Vistula River
Ingarden
Roman
1893
1970
Philosopher, aesthetician - one of the main representatives of Polish phenomenology, created own theory of literature and fundamentals of descriptive aesthetics
Jablonski
Aleksander
1898
1980
Physisist - one of the pioneers of molecular photophysics, created the concept of the "luminescent centre" and own theories of quantum-mechanical pressure broadening and concentrational quenching and depolarization of photoluminescence
Jahn
Alfred
1915
1999
Geographer, globetrotter - explorer of Greenland, Spitsbergen, Alasca, Siberia and northern Canada, expert in permafrost
Kaliski
Sylwester
1925
1978
Engineer, specialist in the field of applied physics - he developed theory of continuous amplification of ultra and hiper-sounds in semiconductive crystals, obtained plasma temperature of tens of millions of degrees Kelvin using laser impulse
Kaminski
Marek
1964
Explorer - the first man who reached the both Poles in one year (1995) on foot and unsupported
Klimaszewski
Mieczyslaw
1908
1995
Geographer, geomorphologist - he elaborated methods of geomorphological and hydrographical mapping, expert in geomorphology of the Tatra Moutains
Kochanski
Adam Adamandy
1631
1700
royal librarian and mathematicians to Jan III Sobieski, along with John Hevelius, astronomer of Gdansk, he constructed a unique, wall, vertical, 3 clock faces sundial at Wilanow Palace in 1681-82, he published an approximation method to finding the length of a circumference of a circle (1685)
Kolberg
Oskar
1814
1890
Folklorist, ethnographer, musician, composer - author of a monumental work: Lud. Jego zwyczaje, sposob zycia, mowa, podania, przyslowia, obrzedy, gusla, zabawy, piesni, muzyka i tance (Nation. Its customs, way of life, spoken language, traditions, proverbs, ceremonies, witchcraft, rejoicings, songs, music and dance), that gave the richest description of the Polish folk culture
Kolberg-Kolobrzeg
(Colberg)
Juliusz
1776
1831
Geodesist, cartographer - the author of Atlas of Polish Kingdom
Konorski
Jerzy
1903
1973
neurophysiologist - he explained the mechanism of acquired reflexes, known as secondary conditioned reflexes
Kopernik
(Copernicus)
Mikolaj
1473
1543
Astronomer, mathematician, economist, physician - in the work De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres) he presented heliocentric theory of the world, which he created, he was the first to formulate a law about replacement of better money by the worse
Kordylewski
Kazimierz
1903
1981
Astronomer, mathematician - he discovered Cloud Moons in the Earth-Moon system
Kostanecki
Stanislaw
1860
1910
Organic chemist - pioneer of vegetable dye chemistry, he developed the theory of dyes (1896) and started the investigations of natural vegetable dyes
Kostrzewski
Jozef
1885
1969
Archeologist, museologist - investigator of the Pre-Slavs, the creator of neoautochtonic school, propagating: forefathers of the Slavs were tribes of Lusatian culture, then peoples within the Oder and Vistula drainage basins were autochtons, over 700 papers
Kotarbinski
Tadeusz
1886
1981
Philosopher, logician, praxiologist - pioneer and co-creator of Polish praxiology, the creator of philosophical concept of regime and, so called, independent ethics
Krwawicz
Tadeusz
1910
Ophthalmologist - inventor of tool for the removal of cataract, pioneer of eye cryiotherapy in Poland
Krygowski
Bogumil
1905
1977
Geographer - the creator of mechanical graniphormametry and theory of glacitectonics
Kuratowski
Kazimierz
1896
1980
Matematician, regarded as a father of topology - specializing in topology, set theory and logic, also many other branches of mathematics like analysis, geometry and differential equations
Lesniewski
Stanislaw
1886
1939
Logician, philosopher, matematician, co-founder of Warsaw School of Logic, he created system of basis for logic and mathematics, invented Reverse Polish Notation (RPN)
Lowmianski
Henryk
1898
1984
Historian - investigator of ancient history of Poland, Slavs and Lithuania, author of The Beginnings of Poland
Lukasiewicz
Ignacy
1822
1882
Pharmacist - founder of Polish oil industry, separated kerosene from mineral oil, invented kerosene lamp
Lukasiewicz
Jan
1878
1956
Logician, philosopher - co-founder of Warsaw School of Logic, one of the outstanding 20th century logicians, defined several axioms in logic theory, created multi-value logic systems, introduced Reverse Polish Notation (RPN)
Majcherczyk
Jerzy
1952
Kayaker, explorer - co-founder of famous expedition to the deepest canyon on the World: Colca Canyon, Peru (1981)
Malinowski
Bronislaw
1884
1942
Ethnologist, sociologist, anthropologist, theoretician of culture - head of Polish Institute in New York, creator of functionality in culture research, field investigations in New Guinea brought him world fame (Sexual life of natives)
Malinowski
Ernest
1815
1899
Railroad and transportation engineer - designed and managed the construction of the railroad line Callao-Oroya in Peru, reaching elevation 4769 m a.s.l.
Marchlewski
Leon
1869
1946
Chemist - he proved that chlorophyll and hemoglobin originate from the same common parent substance, i.e. hemopyrol
Michalowski
Kazimierz
1901
1981
Archeologist, Egyptologist, historian of art - creator of Polish Archeological Station in Cairo, leader of many archeological expeditions to Africa and Asia
Miklaszewski
Slawomir
1874
1949
Pedologist - he developed cartography of soils, author of Soils of Poland
Modjeski (Modrzewski)
Ralph (Rudolf)
1861
1940
Engineer - "America's greatest bridge builder": Thebes Bridge, IL, 1904, Benjamin Franklin Bridge, NJ, 1926 (greatest achievement), Tacony-Palmyra Bridge, PA, 1929, Trans-Bay Bridge, CA, 1936, Blue Water Bridge, MI-ONT, 1938
Nencki
Marceli
1847
1901
Medical doctor, chemist physiologist - pioneer of modern physiology, he discovered the bacteria which are capable of subsisting in the anaerobic atmosphere, he discovered the therapeutic agent, i.e. salol and also found out that the synthesis of urea in the organism takes place in the liver
Neyman-Splawa
Jerzy
1894
Mathematician, statistician - the pioneer of modern statistics (together with Fisher and Pearson), his work on hypothesis testing, confidence intervals and survey sampling revolutionised statistics
Nowak
Edmund
1918
Mechanical design engineer, inventor - numerous inventions in designing machinery for processing (mechanically and thermally) metals and plastics
Olszewski
Karol
1846
1915
Chemist, physisist - expert in low temperatures domain, first condensed oxygen and nitrogen from air (1883, together with Z.F. Wroblewski)
Pietowski
Andrzej

Explorer - he lead the five-nation expedition of National Geographic Society and pinpointed the source of the Amazon River in the Nevado Mismi (5597 m asl, Peruvian Andes) therefore this river is the longest in the world (about 6300 km)
Pniewski
Jerzy
1913
Physicist - co-discoverer of hypernuclei and hypernuclear isomery
Prazmowski
Adam
1821
1885
First Polish astrophysisist - pioneered astrophysical observations of the Sun, co-discovered the polarized emission from the solar corona, designed and constructed innovative astronomical instruments (among others coelostat)
Raciborski
Marian
1863
1917
Botanist - one of the pioneers of nature conservation in Poland, creator of Polish phytogeographical school, pioneer in Polish paleobotany
Religa
Zbigniew
1938
Cardiologist - pioneer of heart transplantation in Poland, grafted an artificial valve, created from materials taken from human corpses (first time on the World, June 1995), creator of Cardiosurgery Development Foundation
Romer
Eugeniusz
1871
1954
Geographer - creator of modern Polish cartography, author of important synthesis relative to climate of Poland and respected geographical textbooks: Geographical Atlas, Ice Epoch in Tatra Mts., Climatic regions in Poland
Sedziwoj
Michal
1566
1636
Alchemist, philosopher, medical doctor - pioneer of chemistry, he assumed that air contains oxygen
Sierpinski
Waclaw
1882
1969
Mathematician - the father of the famous Polish School of Mathematics, his most important work is in the area of set theory (continum hypothesis), point set topology (Sierpinski's curve) and number theory (Sierpinski's numbers), the founder of Fundamenta Mathematicae and Acta Arithmetica (1920) - the world top mathematical journals of that time
Smoluchowski
Marian
1872
1917
Physicist - he made important contributions in many areas of physics, especially in kinematic theory of matter; author of laws of Brown's movements independently of A.Einstein
Sniadecki
Jedrzej
1768
1838
Chemist, medical doctor, philosopher, biologist - pioneer of modern chemistry, he described the Polish chemical nomenclature scientifically, he is the author of the first Polish chemical handbook (1800)
Strzelecki
Edmund
1797
1873
Geologist, explorer - contributed significantly to early Australian history, he published his Physical Description of New South Wales and Van Diemes Land; due to him many places in Australia have Polish names, like the Kosciuszko Mountain (Australian Alps)
Tarski
Alfred
1902
1983
Mathematical logician, philosopher - he introduced the distinction between language and metalanguage ((The concept of Truth in Formalized Languages'), which allowed to avoid the paradoxes detected within the foundations of set theory (Russel's paradox), made numerous contributions to decision theory and model theory, and pioneered the application of algebra to the study of formal systems
Ulam
Stanislaw
Marcin
1909
1984
Mathematician - he solved the problem of how to initiate fusion in the hydrogen bomb; devised the "Monte-Carlo method" widely used in solving mathematical problems using statistical sampling; with J.C. Everett he proposed the Orion plan for nuclear propulsion of space vehicles
Wolfke
Mieczyslaw
1883
1947
Physicist - co-dicoverer of two forms of liquid hellium; precursor of holography
Wroblewski
Zygmunt
1845
1888
Physisist - expert in low temperatures domain, first condensed oxygen and nitrogen from air (1883, together with K. Olszewski)
Zamenhof
Ludwik
1859
1917
Philologist - the initiator of Esperanto, the most widely spoken constructed language to date; he published 'Doktoro Esperanto. Lingvo internacia. Antauparolo kaj plena lernolibro' - Dr. Hopeful. International Language. Foreword And Complete Textbook (1887)


If you know other famous Poles or links to his home pages
drop me a line
Please also visit page Polish-origin Nobel Prize Laureates

Visit Polish scientists in the World science (polish)
Visit Polish Contributions to the Development of World's Sciences from the American Institute of Polish Culture
Visit Famous Poles and Polish Americans from the Polish American Association
Visit Biography on A&E


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Last Updated: 21 October 2007