The article deals with the dawn of aviation in the early XX century before the First world war. The attention is paid to airplanes – type biplane, analyzed varieties of airplanes, especially their designs. There were involved as materials the specialized literature on the history of the development of airplanes, as well as reference and scientific literature. The study used a set of scientific methods: multi-factoriality and integration, chronology, typology, comparison, etc., which together provide the reliable results on the studied problem. For example, studying the experience of the development of world and national aeronautics, we paid attention to the features of their designs, which subsequently allowed the use of prototypes, both for civil and military purposes. In conclusion, the authors state that the development of biplanes in the early XX century was transient. The developments were carried out simultaneously in Europe and in America. At the same time, there was an increased public interest to aeronautics, all this in general formed the necessary conditions for the creation and further development of modifications of airplanes. Already by the beginning of the First world war, the considerable potential was accumulated, which allowed in wartime to equip airplanes with weapons and effectively use a new type of troops on the battlefields. Copyright © 2019 by International Network Center for Fundamental and Applied Research.