In the paper the genesis of the concept „structure“ and „structural approaches“ is analyzed from four aspects. It appears that we do not find a wide model of this concept, in opposition to its narrow understanding, in the Greek classificatory Aristotelian science. The proper genesis of „structure“ and „structural approaches“ is connected with the development of relational thinking of the Modern Period, with (Darwinian) causal and with allsided (genetical and mutational) dialectical thinking.
It is shown in the paper that from among numerous special sciences it was first Butlerian chemistry of the nineteenth ct. which consequently applied principles of relational thinking. The material concept of chemical structure is developed by these principles. Incorrect and idealistic conception of „structure“ that successively spread in psychology of Gestalt, in Russian formalism, linguistic and literary structuralism and in some neopositivist theories of Western natural scientists and in the French structuralism of the 60-ties is criticized by the author.