- © The Mineralogical Society
Academician Professor Ivan Kostov, the most senior (with H. Strunz) Honorary Fellow of the Mineralogical Society, passed away at his home in Sofia, Bulgaria, on March 31, 2004 a few months after his 90th birthday celebrations.
He was born on December 24, 1913 in Plovdiv, the second largest Bulgarian city, not far from the imposing Rhodope Mountains. Even in his youth he showed a wide range of interests and talents. Through his close contact with the mountains he was fascinated by their beauty and they ultimately determined his life’s calling as a naturalist. In 1936 he graduated in Natural History at Sofia University, devoting himself to the study of the world of minerals and crystals. He began his career as assistant at the University’s Institute of Mineralogy and Petrology.
In 1940–1945 he studied at The Royal School of Mines of Imperial College of Science and Technology in London, where in 1941 he received the D.I.C. diploma. The Second World War found him in the UK where he was forced to remain until the end of military operations. He visited several mineral deposits and published some scientific papers in Mining Magazine. In 1945, after returning to Bulgaria, he was appointed Associate Professor at Sofia University where from 1953 he became Professor and Head of the newly established Department of Mineralogy and Crystallography. In 1961 he became a Corresponding Member of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, and in 1966, a Full Member. Recently he was made one of three Honorary Members of the Academy. For a long period in his career he was Head of the Mineralogical Department of the Geological Institute, and from 1977 to 1982 was Director of the Institute. From 1974 he was also Director of the National Museum of Natural History in Sofia, up to his …