The RUSSIAN REVOLUTION was a pair of revolutions in Russia in 1917
which dismantled the
Tsarist autocracy and led to the rise of the
Soviet Union . The
Russian Empire collapsed with the abdication of
Emperor Nicholas II and the old regime was replaced by a provisional
government during the first revolution of February 1917 (March in the
Gregorian calendar ; the older
Julian calendar was in use in Russia at
the time). Alongside it arose grassroots community assemblies (called
'soviets ') which contended for authority. In the second revolution
that October, the Provisional Government was toppled and all power was
given to the soviets.
February Revolution (March 1917) was a revolution focused around
Saint Petersburg ), the capital of Russia at that time.
In the chaos, members of the Imperial parliament (the
Duma ) assumed
control of the country, forming the Russian Provisional Government
which was heavily dominated by the interests of large capitalists and
the noble aristocracy. The army leadership felt they did not have the
means to suppress the revolution, resulting in Nicholas's abdication.
The soviets, which were dominated by soldiers and the urban industrial
working class, initially permitted the Provisional Government to rule,
but insisted on a prerogative to influence the government and control
various militias. The
February Revolution took place in the context of
heavy military setbacks during the First World War (1914–18), which
left much of the Russian Army in a state of mutiny.
A period of dual power ensued, during which the Provisional
Government held state power while the national network of soviets, led
by socialists, had the allegiance of the lower classes and,
increasingly, the left -leaning urban middle class. During this
chaotic period there were frequent mutinies, protests and many
strikes. Many socialist political organizations were engaged in daily
struggle and vied for influence within the
Duma and the soviets,
central among which were the
Bolsheviks ("Ones of the Majority") led
Vladimir Lenin who campaigned for an immediate end to the war, land
to the peasants, and bread to the workers. When the Provisional
Government chose to continue fighting the war with Germany, the
Bolsheviks and other socialist factions were able to exploit virtually
universal disdain towards the war effort as justification to advance
the revolution further. The
Bolsheviks turned workers' militias under
their control into the Red Guards (later the
Red Army ) over which
they exerted substantial control.
October Revolution (November in the Gregorian calendar), the
Bolsheviks led an armed insurrection by workers and soldiers in
Petrograd that successfully overthrew the Provisional Government,
transferring all its authority to the soviets with the capital being
Moscow shortly thereafter. The
Bolsheviks had secured a
strong base of support within the soviets and, as the now supreme
governing party, established a federal government dedicated to
reorganizing the former empire into the world's first socialist
republic, practicing soviet democracy on a national and international
scale. The promise to end Russia’s participation in the First World
War was honored promptly with the
Bolshevik leaders signing the Treaty
of Brest-Litovsk with Germany in March 1918. To further secure the new
Cheka was established which functioned as a revolutionary
security service that sought to weed out and punish those considered
to be "enemies of the people" in campaigns consciously modeled on
similar events during the French
Soon after, civil war erupted among the "Reds" (Bolsheviks), the
"Whites " (counter-revolutionaries ), the independence movements and
Bolshevik socialists . It continued for several years, during
Bolsheviks defeated both the Whites and all rival socialists
and thereafter reconstituted themselves as the
Communist Party . In
this way, the
Revolution paved the way for the creation of the Union
of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) in 1922. While many notable
historical events occurred in
Moscow and Petrograd, there was also a
visible movement in cities throughout the state, among national
minorities throughout the empire and in the rural areas, where
peasants took over and redistributed land.
* 1 Background
* 1.1 Economic and social changes
* 1.2 Political issues
World War I
World War I
* 3 Between February and throughout October: "Dual Power"
Russian Civil War
* 6 Execution of the imperial family
* 7 The revolution and the world
* 9 Chronology
* 9.1 Chronology of events leading to the revolution
* 9.2 Chronology of the 1917 revolutions
* 10 Cultural portrayal
* 10.1 Film
* 11 See also
* 12 Footnotes
* 13 Notes
* 14 Further reading
* 14.2 Participants\' accounts
* 14.3 Primary documents
* 15 External links
Russian history, 1892–1917 Soldiers blocking
Narva Gate on Bloody Sunday
Revolution of 1905 was said to be a major factor to the
February Revolutions of 1917. The events of Bloody Sunday triggered a
line of protests. A council of workers called the St. Petersburg
Soviet was created in all this chaos, and the beginning of a communist
political protest had begun.
World War I
World War I prompted a Russian outcry directed at
Tsar Nicholas II
Tsar Nicholas II .
It was another major factor contributing to the retaliation of the
Russian Communists against their royal opponents. After the entry of
Ottoman Empire on the side of the Central Powers in
Russia was deprived of a major trade route through the Ottoman Empire,
which followed with a minor economic crisis, in which Russia became
incapable of providing munitions to their army in the years leading to
1917. However, the problems were merely administrative, and not
industrial, as Germany was producing great amounts of munitions whilst
constantly fighting on two major battlefronts.
The war also developed a weariness in the city, owing to a lack of
food in response to the disruption of agriculture. Food scarcity had
become a considerable problem in Russia, but the cause of this did not
lie in any failure of the harvests , which had not been significantly
altered during wartime. The indirect reason was that the government,
in order to finance the war, had been printing millions of ruble
notes, and by 1917 inflation had made prices increase up to four times
what they had been in 1914. The peasantry were consequently faced with
the higher cost of purchases, but made no corresponding gain in the
sale of their own produce, since this was largely taken by the
middlemen on whom they depended. As a result, they tended to hoard
their grain and to revert to subsistence farming. Thus the cities were
constantly short of food. At the same time rising prices led to
demands for higher wages in the factories, and in January and February
1916 revolutionary propaganda , aided by German funds, led to
widespread strikes. The outcome of all this, however, was a growing
criticism of the government rather than any war-weariness . The
original fever of patriotic excitement, which had caused the name of
St. Petersburg to be changed to the less German sounding "Petrograd,"
may have subsided a little in the subsequent years, but it had not
turned to defeatism and during the initial risings in
February 1917, the crowds in the streets clearly objected to the
banners proclaiming "down with the war." Heavy losses during the war
also strengthened thoughts that
Tsar Nicholas II
Tsar Nicholas II was unfit to rule.
The Liberals were now better placed to voice their complaints, since
they were participating more fully through a variety of voluntary
organizations. Local industrial committees proliferated. In July 1915,
a Central War Industries Committee was established under the
chairmanship of a prominent Octobrist ,
Alexander Guchkov (1862-1936),
and including ten workers' representatives. The
agreed to join despite the objections of their leaders abroad. All
this activity gave renewed encouragement to political ambitions, and,
in September 1915, a combination of Octobrists and Kadets in the Duma
demanded the forming of a responsible government. The Tsar rejected
these proposals. He had now taken over the position of
commander-in-chief of the armed forces and, during his absence from
Petrograd while at his military headquarters at
Mogilev , he left most
of the day-to-day government in the hands of Empress Alexandra
Feodorovna . She was intensely unpopular, owing, in part, to her
German origin and to the influence that
Grigori Rasputin , an
unsavoury "monk", exercised over her.
All these factors had given rise to a sharp loss of confidence in the
regime by 1916. Early in that year,
Guchkov had been taking soundings
among senior army officers and members of the Central War Industries
Committee about a possible coup to force the abdication of the Tsar.
Pavel Milyukov in the
Duma openly accused the government
of contemplating peace negotiations with Germany. In December, a small
group of nobles assassinated
Rasputin , and in January 1917 the Tsar's
Grand Duke Nicholas , was asked indirectly by Prince Lvov
whether he would be prepared to take over the throne from his nephew,
Tsar Nicholas II. None of these incidents were in themselves the
immediate cause of the February Revolution, but they do help to
explain why the monarchy survived only a few days after it had broken
out. Russian soldiers marching in
Petrograd in February 1917
Social Democrat leaders in exile, most of them living
Switzerland , had been the glum spectators of the collapse of
international socialist solidarity. French and German Social Democrats
had voted in favour of their respective governments. Georgi Plekhanov
Paris had adopted a violently anti-German stand, while Parvus
supported the German war effort as the best means of ensuring a
revolution in Russia. The
Mensheviks largely maintained that Russia
had the right to defend herself against Germany, although
prominent Menshevik), now on the left of his group, demanded an end to
the war and a settlement on the basis of national self-determination,
with no annexations or indemnities .
It was these views of
Martov that predominated in a manifesto drawn
Leon Trotsky (at the time a Menshevik) at a conference in
Zimmerwald , attended by 35 Socialist leaders in September 1915.
Vladimir Lenin , supported by Zinoviev and
Radek , strongly
contested them. Their attitudes became known as the
Lenin rejected both the defence of Russia and the cry for peace. Since
the autumn of 1914, he had insisted that "from the standpoint of the
working class and of the labouring masses from the lesser evil would
be the defeat of the Tsarist Monarchy"; the war must be turned into a
civil war of the proletarian soldiers against their own governments,
and if a proletarian victory should emerge from this in Russia, then
their duty would be to wage a revolutionary war for the liberation of
the masses throughout Europe. Thus, Lenin remained the enfant terrible
Russian Social Democratic Labour Party
Russian Social Democratic Labour Party , although at this point
in the war his following in Russia was as few as 10,000 and he must
have seemed no more than the leader of an extremist wing of a bankrupt
organization. Lenin then executed the protests of
Petrograd which set
off the 1917 Russian Revolution.
ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL CHANGES
An elementary theory of property, believed by many peasants, was that
land should belong to those who work on it. At the same time, peasant
life and culture was changing constantly. Change was facilitated by
the physical movement of growing numbers of peasant villagers who
migrated to and from industrial and urban environments, but also by
the introduction of city culture into the village through material
goods, the press, and word of mouth.
Workers also had good reasons for discontent: overcrowded housing
with often deplorable sanitary conditions, long hours at work (on the
eve of the war a 10-hour workday six days a week was the average and
many were working 11–12 hours a day by 1916), constant risk of
injury and death from poor safety and sanitary conditions, harsh
discipline (not only rules and fines, but foremen's fists), and
inadequate wages (made worse after 1914 by steep wartime increases in
the cost of living). At the same time, urban industrial life was full
of benefits, though these could be just as dangerous, from the point
of view of social and political stability, as the hardships. There
were many encouragements to expect more from life. Acquiring new
skills gave many workers a sense of self-respect and confidence,
heightening expectations and desires. Living in cities, workers
encountered material goods such as they had never seen in villages.
Most important, living in cities, they were exposed to new ideas about
the social and political order.
The social causes of the Russian
Revolution mainly came from
centuries of oppression of the lower classes by the Tsarist regime,
and Nicholas's failures in World War I. While rural agrarian peasants
had been emancipated from serfdom in 1861, they still resented paying
redemption payments to the state, and demanded communal tender of the
land they worked. The problem was further compounded by the failure of
Sergei Witte 's land reforms of the early 20th century. Increasing
peasant disturbances and sometimes actual revolts occurred, with the
goal of securing ownership of the land they worked. Russia consisted
mainly of poor farming peasants, with 1.5% of the population owning
25% of the land.
The rapid industrialization of Russia also resulted in urban
overcrowding and poor conditions for urban industrial workers (as
mentioned above). Between 1890 and 1910, the population of the
capital, Saint Petersburg, swelled from 1,033,600 to 1,905,600, with
Moscow experiencing similar growth. This created a new 'proletariat'
which, due to being crowded together in the cities, was much more
likely to protest and go on strike than the peasantry had been in
previous times. In one 1904 survey, it was found that an average of
sixteen people shared each apartment in Saint Petersburg, with six
people per room. There was also no running water, and piles of human
waste were a threat to the health of the workers. The poor conditions
only aggravated the situation, with the number of strikes and
incidents of public disorder rapidly increasing in the years shortly
before World War I. Because of late industrialization, Russia's
workers were highly concentrated. By 1914, 40% of Russian workers were
employed in factories of 1,000+ workers (32% in 1901). 42% worked in
100–1,000 worker enterprises, 18% in 1–100 worker businesses (in
the USA, 1914, the figures were 18, 47 and 35 respectively).
AVERAGE ANNUAL STRIKES
World War I
World War I added to the chaos. Conscription swept up the unwilling
across Russia. The vast demand for factory production of war supplies
and workers caused many more labor riots and strikes. Conscription
stripped skilled workers from the cities, who had to be replaced with
unskilled peasants, and then, when famine began to hit due to the poor
railway system, workers abandoned the cities in droves seeking food.
Finally, the soldiers themselves, who suffered from a lack of
equipment and protection from the elements, began to turn against the
Tsar. This was mainly because, as the war progressed, many of the
officers who were loyal to the Tsar were killed, and were replaced by
discontented conscripts from the major cities, who had little loyalty
to the Tsar. The
Petrograd Soviet Assembly meeting in 1917
Many sections of the country had reason to be dissatisfied with the
existing autocracy. Nicholas II was a deeply conservative ruler and
maintained a strict authoritarian system. Individuals and society in
general were expected to show self-restraint, devotion to community,
deference to the social hierarchy and a sense of duty to the country.
Religious faith helped bind all of these tenets together as a source
of comfort and reassurance in the face of difficult conditions and as
a means of political authority exercised through the clergy. Perhaps
more than any other modern monarch, Nicholas II attached his fate and
the future of his dynasty to the notion of the ruler as a saintly and
infallible father to his people.
This idealized vision of the Romanov monarchy blinded him to the
actual state of his country. With a firm belief that his power to rule
was granted by Divine Right , Nicholas assumed that the Russian people
were devoted to him with unquestioning loyalty. This ironclad belief
rendered Nicholas unwilling to allow the progressive reforms that
might have alleviated the suffering of the Russian people. Even after
the 1905 revolution spurred the Tsar to decree limited civil rights
and democratic representation, he worked to limit even these liberties
in order to preserve the ultimate authority of the crown.
Despite constant oppression, the desire of the people for democratic
participation in government decisions was strong. Since the Age of
Enlightenment , Russian intellectuals had promoted Enlightenment
ideals such as the dignity of the individual and the rectitude of
democratic representation. These ideals were championed most
vociferously by Russia’s liberals, although populists, Marxists, and
anarchists also claimed to support democratic reforms. A growing
opposition movement had begun to challenge the Romanov monarchy openly
well before the turmoil of World War I.
Dissatisfaction with Russian autocracy culminated in the huge
national upheaval that followed the Bloody Sunday massacre of January
1905, in which hundreds of unarmed protesters were shot by the Tsar's
troops. Workers responded to the massacre with a crippling general
strike, forcing Nicholas to put forth the
October Manifesto , which
established a democratically elected parliament (the State
Duma ). The
Tsar undermined this promise of reform but a year later with Article
87 of the 1906 Fundamental State Laws , and subsequently dismissed the
first two Dumas when they proved uncooperative. Unfulfilled hopes of
democracy fueled revolutionary ideas and violent outbursts targeted at
One of the Tsar’s principal rationales for risking war in 1914 was
his desire to restore the prestige that Russia had lost amid the
debacles of the
Russo-Japanese war . Nicholas also sought to foster a
greater sense of national unity with a war against a common and
ancient enemy. The
Russian Empire was an agglomeration of diverse
ethnicities that had shown significant signs of disunity in the years
before the First World War. Nicholas believed in part that the shared
peril and tribulation of a foreign war would mitigate the social
unrest over the persistent issues of poverty, inequality, and inhuman
working conditions. Instead of restoring Russia's political and
World War I
World War I led to the horrifying slaughter of
Russian troops and military defeats that undermined both the monarchy
and society in general to the point of collapse.
WORLD WAR I
The outbreak of war in August 1914 initially served to quiet the
prevalent social and political protests, focusing hostilities against
a common external enemy, but this patriotic unity did not last long.
As the war dragged on inconclusively, war-weariness gradually took its
toll. More important, though, was a deeper fragility: although many
ordinary Russians joined anti-German demonstrations in the first few
weeks of the war, the most widespread reaction appears to have been
skepticism and fatalism. Hostility toward the Kaiser and the desire to
defend their land and their lives did not necessarily translate into
enthusiasm for the Tsar or the government.
Russia's first major battle of the war was a disaster: in the 1914
Battle of Tannenberg , over 30,000 Russian troops were killed or
wounded and 90,000 captured, while Germany suffered just 12,000
casualties. However, Austro-Hungarian forces allied to Germany were
driven back deep into the Galicia region by the end of the year. In
the autumn of 1915, Nicholas had taken direct command of the army,
personally overseeing Russia's main theatre of war and leaving his
ambitious but incapable wife Alexandra in charge of the government.
Reports of corruption and incompetence in the Imperial government
began to emerge, and the growing influence of
Grigori Rasputin in the
Imperial family was widely resented. In the eyes of Michael Lynch, a
revisionist historian (member of the School of Historical Studies at
the University of Leicester) who focuses on the role of the people,
Rasputin was a "fatal disease" to the Tsarist regime.
In 1915, things took a critical turn for the worse when Germany
shifted its focus of attack to the Eastern front. The superior German
army – better led, better trained and better supplied – was
terrifyingly effective against the ill-equipped Russian forces,
driving the Russians out of Galicia, as well as Russian Poland, during
Gorlice–Tarnów Offensive campaign. By the end of
Russia had lost between 1,600,000 and 1,800,000 soldiers, with an
additional 2,000,000 prisoners of war and 1,000,000 missing, all
making up a total of nearly 5,000,000 men.
These staggering losses played a definite role in the mutinies and
revolts that began to occur. In 1916, reports of fraternizing with the
enemy started to circulate. Soldiers went hungry, and lacked shoes,
munitions, and even weapons. Rampant discontent lowered morale, which
was further undermined by a series of military defeats. Russian
troops awaiting German attack in trenches
Casualty rates were the most vivid sign of this disaster. Already, by
the end of 1914, only five months into the war, around 390,000 Russian
men had lost their lives and nearly 1,000,000 were injured. Far sooner
than expected, barely trained recruits had to be called up for active
duty, a process repeated throughout the war as staggering losses
continued to mount. The officer class also saw remarkable changes,
especially within the lower echelons, which were quickly filled with
soldiers rising up through the ranks. These men, usually of peasant or
working-class backgrounds, were to play a large role in the
politicization of the troops in 1917.
The huge losses on the battlefields were not limited to men. The army
quickly ran short of rifles and ammunition (as well as uniforms and
food), and, by mid-1915, men were being sent to the front bearing no
arms. It was hoped that they could equip themselves with the arms that
they recovered from fallen soldiers, of both sides, on the
battlefields. The soldiers did not feel that they were being treated
as human beings, or even as valuable soldiers, but rather as raw
materials to be squandered for the purposes of the rich and powerful.
By the spring of 1915, the army was in steady retreat, which was not
always orderly; desertion, plunder and chaotic flight were not
uncommon. By 1916, however, the situation had improved in many
respects. Russian troops stopped retreating, and there were even some
modest successes in the offensives that were staged that year, albeit
at great loss of life. Also, the problem of shortages was largely
solved by a major effort to increase domestic production.
Nevertheless, by the end of 1916, morale among soldiers was even worse
than it had been during the great retreat of 1915 . The fortunes of
war may have improved, but the fact of the war, still draining away
strength and lives from the country and its many individuals and
families, remained an oppressive inevitability. The crisis in morale
(as was argued by Allan Wildman, a leading historian of the Russian
army in war and revolution) "was rooted fundamentally in the feeling
of utter despair that the slaughter would ever end and that anything
resembling victory could be achieved."
The war devastated not only soldiers. By the end of 1915, there were
manifold signs that the economy was breaking down under the heightened
strain of wartime demand. The main problems were food shortages and
rising prices. Inflation dragged incomes down at an alarmingly rapid
rate, and shortages made it difficult to buy even what one could
afford. These shortages were a problem especially in the capital, St.
Petersburg , where distance from supplies and poor transportation
networks made matters particularly bad. Shops closed early or entirely
for lack of bread, sugar, meat and other provisions, and lines
lengthened massively for what remained. It became increasingly
difficult both to afford and actually buy food.
Not surprisingly, strikes increased steadily from the middle of 1915,
and so did crime; but, for the most part, people suffered and endured,
scouring the city for food. Working class women in St. Petersburg
reportedly spent about forty hours a week in food lines, begging,
turning to prostitution or crime, tearing down wooden fences to keep
stoves heated for warmth, grumbling about the rich, and wondering when
and how this would all come to an end.
Government officials responsible for public order worried about how
long people's patience would last. A report by the St. Petersburg
branch of the security police, the
Okhrana , in
October 1916, warned
bluntly of "the possibility in the near future of riots by the lower
classes of the empire enraged by the burdens of daily existence."
Nicholas was blamed for all of these crises, and what little support
he had left began to crumble. As discontent grew, the State Duma
issued a warning to Nicholas in November 1916. It stated that,
inevitably, a terrible disaster would grip the country unless a
constitutional form of government was put in place. Nicholas ignored
these warnings and Russia's Tsarist regime collapsed a few months
later during the
February Revolution of 1917. One year later, the Tsar
and his entire family were executed.
February Revolution Revolutionaries protesting in
February 1917 Meeting Germans in No Man's Land Meeting
before the Russian wire entanglements
At the beginning of February,
Petrograd workers began several strikes
and demonstrations . On 7 March , workers at Putilov , Petrograd's
largest industrial plant, announced a strike.
The next day, a series of meetings and rallies were held for
International Women\'s Day , which gradually turned into economic and
political gatherings. Demonstrations were organised to demand bread ,
and these were supported by the industrial working force who
considered them a reason for continuing the strikes. The women workers
marched to nearby factories bringing out over 50,000 workers on
strike. By 10 March , virtually every industrial enterprise in
Petrograd had been shut down, together with many commercial and
service enterprises. Students, white-collar workers and teachers
joined the workers in the streets and at public meetings.
To quell the riots, the Tsar looked to the army. At least 180,000
troops were available in the capital, but most were either untrained
or injured. Historian Ian Beckett suggests around 12,000 could be
regarded as reliable, but even these proved reluctant to move in on
the crowd, since it included so many women. It was for this reason
that when, on 11 March , the Tsar ordered the army to suppress the
rioting by force, troops began to mutiny. Although few actively
joined the rioting, many officers were either shot or went into
hiding; the ability of the garrison to hold back the protests was all
but nullified, symbols of the Tsarist regime were rapidly torn down
around the city, and governmental authority in the capital collapsed
– not helped by the fact that Nicholas had prorogued the
morning, leaving it with no legal authority to act. The response of
the Duma, urged on by the liberal bloc, was to establish a Temporary
Committee to restore law and order; meanwhile, the socialist parties
Petrograd Soviet to represent workers and soldiers. The
remaining loyal units switched allegiance the next day.
The Tsar directed the royal train back towards Petrograd, which was
stopped 14 March , by a group of revolutionaries at
Malaya Vishera .
When the Tsar finally arrived at in
Pskov , the Army Chief Nikolai
Ruzsky , and the
Vasily Shulgin suggested in
unison that he abdicate the throne. He did so on 15 March , on behalf
of himself, and then, having taken advice, on behalf of his son, the
Tsarevich . Nicholas nominated his brother, the Grand Duke Michael
Alexandrovich , to succeed him. But the Grand Duke realised that he
would have little support as ruler, so he declined the crown on 16
March , stating that he would take it only if that was the consensus
of democratic action. Six days later, Nicholas, no longer Tsar and
addressed with contempt by the sentries as "Nicholas Romanov", was
reunited with his family at the
Alexander Palace at
Tsarskoye Selo .
He was placed under house arrest with his family by the Provisional
The immediate effect of the
February Revolution was a widespread
atmosphere of elation and excitement in Petrograd. On 16 March , a
provisional government was announced. The center-left was well
represented, and the government was initially chaired by a liberal
aristocrat, Prince Georgy Yevgenievich Lvov , a member of the
Constitutional Democratic party (KD). The socialists had formed their
rival body, the
Petrograd Soviet (or workers' council) four days
Petrograd Soviet and the Provisional Government competed
for power over Russia.
BETWEEN FEBRUARY AND THROUGHOUT OCTOBER: "DUAL POWER" (DVOEVLASTIE)
The effective power of the Provisional Government was challenged by
the authority of an institution that claimed to represent the will of
workers and soldiers and could, in fact, mobilize and control these
groups during the early months of the revolution – the Petrograd
Soviet of Workers' Deputies. The model for the soviet were workers'
councils that had been established in scores of Russian cities during
the 1905 Revolution. In February 1917, striking workers elected
deputies to represent them and socialist activists began organizing a
citywide council to unite these deputies with representatives of the
socialist parties. On 27 February, socialist
Duma deputies, mainly
Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries, took the lead in organizing
a citywide council. The
Petrograd Soviet met in the
Tauride Palace ,
the same building where the new government was taking shape.
The leaders of the
Petrograd Soviet believed that they represented
particular classes of the population, not the whole nation. They also
believed Russia was not ready for socialism. So they saw their role as
limited to pressuring hesitant "bourgeoisie" to rule and to introduce
extensive democratic reforms in Russia (the replacement of the
monarchy by a republic, guaranteed civil rights, a democratic police
and army, abolition of religious and ethnic discrimination,
preparation of elections to a constituent assembly, and so on). They
met in the same building as the emerging Provisional Government not to
compete with the
Duma Committee for state power but to best exert
pressure on the new government, to act, in other words, as a popular
The relationship between these two major powers was complex from the
beginning and would shape the politics of 1917. The representatives of
the Provisional Government agreed to "take into account the opinions
of the Soviet of Workers' Deputies", though they were also determined
to prevent "interference in the actions of the government", which
would create "an unacceptable situation of dual power." In fact, this
was precisely what was being created, though this "dual power"
(dvoevlastie) was the result less of the actions or attitudes of the
leaders of these two institutions than of actions outside their
control, especially the ongoing social movement taking place on the
streets of Russia’s cities, in factories and shops, in barracks and
in the trenches, and in the villages. The 2nd
Moscow Women Death
Battalion protecting the
Winter Palace as the last guards of the
A series of political crises – see the chronology below – in the
relationship between population and government and between the
Provisional Government and the soviets (which developed into a
nationwide movement with a national leadership, The All-Russian
Central Executive Committee of Soviets (VTsIK)) undermined the
authority of the Provisional Government but also of the moderate
socialist leaders of the Soviet. Although the Soviet leadership
initially refused to participate in the "bourgeois" Provisional
Alexander Kerensky , a young and popular lawyer and a
member of the
Socialist Revolutionary Party
Socialist Revolutionary Party (SRP), agreed to join the
new cabinet, and became an increasingly central figure in the
government, eventually taking leadership of the Provisional
Government. As minister of war and later Prime Minister, Kerensky
promoted freedom of speech, released thousands of political prisoners,
did his very best to continue the war effort and even organised
another offensive (which, however, was no more successful than its
predecessors). Nevertheless, Kerensky still faced several great
challenges, highlighted by the soldiers, urban workers and peasants,
who claimed that they had gained nothing by the revolution:
* Other political groups were trying to undermine him.
* Heavy military losses were being suffered on the front.
* The soldiers were dissatisfied and demoralised and had started to
defect. (On arrival back in Russia, these soldiers were either
imprisoned or sent straight back into the front.)
* There was enormous discontent with Russia's involvement in the
war, and many were calling for an end to it.
* There were great shortages of food and supplies, which was
difficult to remedy because of the wartime economic conditions.
The political group that proved most troublesome for Kerensky, and
would eventually overthrow him, was the
Bolshevik Party, led by
Vladimir Lenin . Lenin had been living in exile in neutral Switzerland
and, due to democratization of politics after the February Revolution,
which legalized formerly banned political parties, he perceived the
opportunity for his Marxist revolution. Although return to Russia had
become a possibility, the war made it logistically difficult.
Eventually, German officials arranged for Lenin to pass through their
territory, hoping that his activities would weaken Russia or even –
Bolsheviks came to power – lead to Russia's withdrawal from
the war. Lenin and his associates, however, had to agree to travel to
Russia in a sealed train: Germany would not take the chance that he
would foment revolution in Germany. After passing through the front,
he arrived in
Petrograd in April 1917. Street demonstration on
Nevsky Prospekt in
Petrograd just after troops of the Provisional
Government opened fire in the
With Lenin's arrival, the popularity of the
steadily. Over the course of the spring, public dissatisfaction with
the Provisional Government and the war, in particular among workers,
soldiers and peasants, pushed these groups to radical parties. Despite
growing support for the Bolsheviks, buoyed by maxims that called most
famously for "all power to the Soviets," the party held very little
real power in the moderate-dominated
Petrograd Soviet. In fact,
historians such as Sheila Fitzpatrick have asserted that Lenin's
exhortations for the Soviet Council to take power were intended to
arouse indignation both with the Provisional Government, whose
policies were viewed as conservative, and the Soviet itself, which was
viewed as subservient to the conservative government. By some
historians' accounts, Lenin and his followers were unprepared for how
their groundswell of support, especially among influential worker and
soldier groups, would translate into real power in the summer of 1917.
Soviets attacking the Czar's police in the early days of the
On 18 June, the Provisional Government launched an attack against
Germany that failed miserably. Soon after, the government ordered
soldiers to go to the front, reneging on a promise. The soldiers
refused to follow the new orders. The arrival of radical Kronstadt
sailors – who had tried and executed many officers, including one
admiral – further fueled the growing revolutionary atmosphere. The
sailors and soldiers, along with
Petrograd workers, took to the
streets in violent protest, calling for "all power to the Soviets."
The revolt, however, was disowned by Lenin and the
and dissipated within a few days. In the aftermath, Lenin fled to
Finland under threat of arrest while
Trotsky , among other prominent
Bolsheviks, was arrested. The
July Days confirmed the popularity of
the anti-war, radical Bolsheviks, but their unpreparedness at the
moment of revolt was an embarrassing gaffe that lost them support
among their main constituent groups: soldiers and workers.
Bolshevik failure in the
July Days proved temporary. The
Bolsheviks had undergone a spectacular growth in membership. Whereas,
in February 1917, the
Bolsheviks were limited to only 24,000 members,
by September 1917 there were 200,000 members of the
Bolsheviks had been in the minority in the two
leading cities of Russia—
St. Petersburg and
Moscow behind the
Mensheviks and the Socialist Revolutionaries, by September the
Bolsheviks were in the majority in both cities. Furthermore, the
Moscow Regional Bureau of the Party also
controlled the Party organizations of the thirteen (13) provinces
around Moscow. These thirteen provinces held 37% of Russia's
population and 20% of the membership of the
In August, poor or misleading communication led General Lavr Kornilov
, the recently appointed Supreme Commander of Russian military forces,
to believe that the
Petrograd government had already been captured by
radicals, or was in serious danger thereof. In response, he ordered
Petrograd to pacify the city. To secure his position,
Kerensky had to ask for
Bolshevik assistance. He also sought help from
Petrograd Soviet, which called upon armed Red Guards to "defend
the revolution". The
Kornilov Affair failed largely due to the efforts
of the Bolsheviks, whose influence over railroad and telegraph workers
proved vital in stopping the movement of troops. With his coup
failing, Kornilov surrendered and was relieved of his position. The
Bolsheviks' role in stopping the attempted coup further strengthened
In early September, the
Petrograd Soviet freed all jailed Bolsheviks
Trotsky became chairman of the
Petrograd Soviet. Growing numbers
of socialists and lower-class Russians viewed the government less and
less as a force in support of their needs and interests. The
Bolsheviks benefited as the only major organized opposition party that
had refused to compromise with the Provisional Government, and they
benefited from growing frustration and even disgust with other
parties, such as the
Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries, who
stubbornly refused to break with the idea of national unity across all
In Finland, Lenin had worked on his book State and
continued to lead his party, writing newspaper articles and policy
decrees. By October, he returned to
Petrograd (St. Petersburg), aware
that the increasingly radical city presented him no legal danger and a
second opportunity for revolution. Recognising the strength of the
Bolsheviks, Lenin began pressing for the immediate overthrow of the
Kerensky government by the Bolsheviks. Lenin was of the opinion that
taking power should occur in both
St. Petersburg and Moscow
simultaneously, parenthetically stating that it made no difference
which city rose up first, but expressing his opinion that
well rise up first. The
Bolshevik Central Committee drafted a
resolution, calling for the dissolution of the Provisional Government
in favor of the
Petrograd Soviet. The resolution was passed 10–2
Lev Kamenev and
Grigory Zinoviev prominently dissenting) and the
October Revolution began.
October Revolution was led by
Vladimir Lenin and was based upon
Lenin's writing on the ideas of
Karl Marx , a political ideology often
Marxism–Leninism . It marked the beginning of the spread of
communism in the 20th century. It was far less sporadic than the
revolution of February and came about as the result of deliberate
planning and coordinated activity to that end.
Though Lenin was the leader of the
Bolshevik Party, it has been
argued that since Lenin was not present during the actual takeover of
the Winter Palace, it was really Trotsky\'s organization and direction
that led the revolution, merely spurred by the motivation Lenin
instigated within his party. Critics on the Right have long argued
that the financial and logistical assistance of German intelligence
via their key agent, Alexander
Parvus was a key component as well,
though historians are divided, since there is little evidence
supporting that claim.
On 7 November 1917,
Vladimir Lenin led his leftist
revolutionaries in a revolt against the ineffective Provisional
Government (Russia was still using the
Julian calendar at the time, so
period references show a 25
October date). The
ended the phase of the revolution instigated in February, replacing
Russia's short-lived provisional parliamentary government with
government by soviets , local councils elected by bodies of workers
and peasants. Liberal and monarchist forces, loosely organized into
White Army , immediately went to war against the Bolsheviks' Red
Army , in a series of battles that would become known as the Russian
Soviet membership was initially freely elected, but many members of
Socialist Revolutionary Party
Socialist Revolutionary Party , anarchists, and other leftists
created opposition to the
Bolsheviks through the soviets themselves.
When it became clear that the
Bolsheviks had little support outside of
the industrialized areas of
Saint Petersburg and Moscow, they simply
Bolsheviks from membership in the soviets. Not
surprisingly, this caused mass domestic tension with many individuals
who called for another series of political reform, revolting, and
calling for "a third Russian revolution," a movement that received a
significant amount of support. The most notable instances of this
Bolshevik mentality were expressed in the
Tambov rebellion ,
1919–1921, and the
Kronstadt rebellion in March 1921. These
movements, which made a wide range of demands and lacked effective
coordination, were eventually defeated along with the White Army
during the Civil War .
RUSSIAN CIVIL WAR
American, British, and Japanese Troops parade through
Vladivostok in armed support to the
White Army Main articles:
Russian Civil War and Allied intervention in the
Russian Civil War
The Russian Civil War, which broke out in 1918 shortly after the
revolution, brought death and suffering to millions of people
regardless of their political orientation. The war was fought mainly
Red Army ("Reds"), consisting of the uprising majority led
Bolshevik minority, and the "Whites" – army officers and
cossacks, the "bourgeoisie", and political groups ranging from the far
Right to the Socialist Revolutionaries who opposed the drastic
restructuring championed by the
Bolsheviks following the collapse of
the Provisional Government to the soviets (under clear Bolshevik
dominance). The Whites had backing from nations such as Great
Britain, France, USA and Japan, while the Reds possessed internal
support which proved to be much more effective. Though the Allied
nations, using external interference, provided substantial military
aid to the loosely knit anti-
Bolshevik forces, they were ultimately
Bolsheviks firstly assumed power in Petrograd, expanding their
rule outwards. They eventually reached the Easterly Siberian Russian
Vladivostok , 4 years after the war began, an occupation that
is believed to have ended all significant military campaigns in the
nation. Less than one year later the last area controlled by the White
Ayano-Maysky District , directly to the north of the Krai
containing Vladivostok, was given up when General Anatoly Pepelyayev
capitulated in 1923.
Several revolts were initiated against the
Bolsheviks and their army
near the end of the war, notably the
Kronstadt Rebellion. This was a
naval mutiny engineered by Soviet Baltic sailors, former Red Army
soldiers, and the people of Kronstadt. This armed uprising was fought
against the antagonizing
Bolshevik economic policies that farmers were
subjected to, including seizures of grain crops by the Communists.
This all amounted to large-scale discontent. When delegates
Kronstadt sailors arrived at
negotiations, they raised 15 demands primarily pertaining to the
Russian right to freedom. The Government firmly denounced the
rebellions and labelled the requests as a reminder of the Social
Revolutionaries, a political party that was popular among Soviets
before Lenin, but refused to cooperate with the
Bolshevik Army. The
Government then responded with an armed suppression of these revolts
and suffered 10 thousand casualties before entering the city of
Kronstadt. This ended the rebellions fairly quickly, causing many of
the rebels to flee to political exile.
During the Civil War,
Nestor Makhno led a Ukrainian anarchist
movement, the Black Army allied to the
Bolsheviks thrice, one of the
powers ending the alliance each time. However, a
Bolshevik force under
Mikhail Frunze destroyed the
Makhnovist movement, when the Makhnovists
refused to merge into the
Red Army . In addition, the so-called "Green
Army " (peasants defending their property against the opposing forces)
played a secondary role in the war, mainly in the Ukraine.
EXECUTION OF THE IMPERIAL FAMILY
Shooting of the Romanov family
Bolsheviks executed the tsar and his family on 16 July 1918. In
early March, the Provisional Government placed Nicholas and his family
under house arrest in the
Alexander Palace at
Tsarskoye Selo , 24
kilometres (15 mi) south of Petrograd. In August 1917 the Kerensky
government evacuated the Romanovs to
Tobolsk in the
Urals , to protect
them from the rising tide of revolution during the
Red Terror . After
Bolsheviks came to power in
October 1917, the conditions of their
imprisonment grew stricter and talk of putting Nicholas on trial
increased. As the counter revolutionary
White movement gathered force,
leading to full-scale civil war by the summer, the Romanovs were moved
during April and May 1918 to
Yekaterinburg , a militant Bolshevik
During the early morning of 16 July, Nicholas, Alexandra, their
children, their physician, and several servants were taken into the
basement and shot. According to Edvard Radzinsky and Dmitrii
Volkogonov, the order came directly from Lenin and Sverdlov in Moscow.
That the order came from the top has long been believed, although
there is a lack of hard evidence. The execution may have been carried
out on the initiative of local
Bolshevik officials, or it may have
been an option pre-approved in
Moscow should White troops approach
Yekaterinburg. Radzinsky noted that Lenin's bodyguard personally
delivered the telegram ordering the execution and that he was ordered
to destroy the evidence.
THE REVOLUTION AND THE WORLD
Revolutions of 1917–23
Leon Trotsky said that the goal of socialism in Russia would not be
realized without the success of the world revolution . Indeed, a
revolutionary wave caused by the Russian
Revolution lasted until 1923.
Despite initial hopes for success in the German
1918–19 , in the short-lived
Hungarian Soviet Republic and others
like it, no other Marxist movement at the time succeeded in keeping
power in its hands.
This issue is subject to conflicting views on the communist history
by various Marxist groups and parties.
Joseph Stalin later rejected
this idea, stating that socialism was possible in one country .
The confusion regarding Stalin's position on the issue stems from the
fact that he, after Lenin's death in 1924, successfully used Lenin's
argument – the argument that socialism's success needs the workers
of other countries in order to happen – to defeat his competitors
within the party by accusing them of betraying Lenin and, therefore,
the ideals of the
October Revolution §
Few events in historical research have been as conditioned by
political influences as the
October Revolution. The historiography of
Revolution generally divides into three camps: the Soviet-Marxist
view, the Western-Totalitarian view, and the Revisionist view. Since
the fall of
Communism in Russia in 1991, the Western-Totalitarian view
has again become dominant and the Soviet-Marxist view has practically
Lenin's biographer Robert Service , says he, "laid the foundations of
dictatorship and lawlessness. Lenin had consolidated the principle of
state penetration of the whole society, its economy and its culture.
Lenin had practised terror and advocated revolutionary amoralism."
CHRONOLOGY OF EVENTS LEADING TO THE REVOLUTION
Dates are correct for the
Julian calendar , which was used in Russia
until 1918. It was twelve days behind the
Gregorian calendar during
the 19th century and thirteen days behind it during the 20th century.
Growing anti-government terrorist movement and government reaction.
Alexander II assassinated by revolutionaries; succeeded by
Alexander III .
First Russian Marxist group formed.
Start of reign of Nicholas II .
First Congress of
Russian Social Democratic Labour Party
Russian Social Democratic Labour Party (RSDLP).
Socialist Revolutionary Party
Socialist Revolutionary Party (SR).
Second Congress of Russian Social Democratic Labour Party.
Beginning of split between
Russo-Japanese War ; Russia loses war.
Revolution of 1905 .
Bloody Sunday in
Saint Petersburg .
Battleship Potemkin uprising at
Odessa on the
Black Sea (see movie
The Battleship Potemkin
The Battleship Potemkin ).
Saint Petersburg Soviet formed;
October Manifesto :
Imperial agreement on elections to the State
Duma . Prime Minister:
Petr Stolypin . Agrarian reforms
Third State Duma, until 1912.
Fourth State Duma, until 1917.
Menshevik split final.
Germany declares war on Russia.
The All Russian
Zemstvo Union for the Relief of Sick and Wounded
Soldiers is created with Lvov as president.
Russia suffers heavy defeats and a large shortage of supplies,
including food and munitions, but holds onto Austrian Galicia.
Germany declares war on Russia, causing a brief sense of patriotic
union amongst the Russian nation and a downturn in striking.
St. Petersburg is renamed
Petrograd as 'Germanic' names are changed
to sound more Russian, and hence more patriotic.
Bolshevik members of the
Duma are arrested; they are later tried
and exiled to Siberia.
Serious defeats, Nicholas II declares himself Commander in Chief.
Great Britain and France promise Russia Istanbul and other Turkish
Strikers shot at in Kostromá; casualties.
The Great Retreat begins, as Russian forces pull back out of
Galicia and Russian Poland into Russia proper.
The Duma's bourgeois parties form the 'Progressive bloc' to push
for better government and reform; includes the Kadets, Octobrist
groups and Nationalists.
Strikers shot at in Ivánovo-Voznesénsk; casualties.
Petrograd protest at the deaths in
Reacting to war failures and a hostile Duma, the Tsar takes over as
Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, prorogues the
Duma and moves
to military headquarters at Mogilev. Central government begins to
Food and fuel shortages and high prices. Progressive Bloc formed.
Despite successes in the Brusilov offensive, the Russian war effort
is still characterised by shortages, poor command, death and
desertion. Away from the front, the conflict causes starvation,
inflation and a torrent of refugees. Both soldiers and civilians blame
the incompetence of the Tsar and his government.
After a month of strikes at the Putílov Factory, the government
conscripts the workers and takes charge of production.
Troops from 181st Regiment help striking Russkii Renault workers
fight against the Police.
Miliukov gives his 'Is this stupidity or treason?' speech in
Rasputin is killed by Prince Yusupov.
The Tsar is warned that his army will not support him against a
Strikes, mutinies, street demonstrations lead to the fall of
CHRONOLOGY OF THE 1917 REVOLUTIONS
Strikes and unrest in
February Revolution .
International Women's Day: strikes and demonstrations in Petrograd,
growing over the next few days.
50 demonstrators killed in
Znamenskaya Square Tsar Nicholas II
prorogues the State
Duma and orders commander of
district to suppress disorders with force.
* Troops refuse to fire on demonstrators, deserters. Prisons, courts,
and police bumbs attacked and looted by angry crowds.
Okhrana buildings set on fire. Garrison joins revolutionaries.
Petrograd Soviet formed.
* Formation of Provisional Committee of the
Duma by liberals from
Constitutional Democratic Party (Kadets).
Order No.1 of the
Nicholas II abdicates. Provisional Government formed under Prime
Minister Prince Lvov .
Vladimir Lenin to Russia. He publishes his April Theses .
"April Days": mass demonstrations by workers, soldiers, and others
in the streets of
Moscow triggered by the publication of
the Foreign Minister
Pavel Miliukov 's note to the allies, which was
interpreted as affirming commitment to the war policies of the old
government. First Provisional Government falls.
First Coalition Government forms when socialists, representatives
of the Soviet leadership, agree to enter the cabinet of the
Alexander Kerensky , the only socialist
already in the government, made minister of war and navy.
First All-Russian Congress of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies opens
in Petrograd. Closed on 24 June. Elects Central Executive Committee of
Soviets (VTsIK), headed by
Mensheviks and SRs.
Bolshevik demonstration in
Petrograd banned by the Soviet.
Kerensky orders offensive against Austro-Hungarian forces. Initial
Official Soviet demonstration in
Petrograd for unity is
unexpectedly dominated by
Bolshevik slogans: "Down with the Ten
Capitalist Ministers", "All Power to the Soviets".
Russian offensive ends.
Trotsky joins Bolsheviks.
July Days "; mass armed demonstrations in Petrograd,
encouraged by the Bolsheviks, demanding "All Power to the Soviets".
German and Austro-Hungarian counter-attack. Russians retreat in
panic, sacking the town of
Tarnopol . Arrest of
Lvov resigns and asks Kerensky to become Prime Minister and form a
new government. Established 25 July.
Trotsky and Lunacharskii arrested.
Second coalition government ends.
"Kornilov mutiny". Begins when the commander-in-chief of the
Russian army, General Lavr Kornilov, demands (or is believed by
Kerensky to demand) that the government give him all civil and
military authority and moves troops against Petrograd.
Majority of deputies of the
Petrograd Soviet approve a Bolshevik
resolution for an all-socialist government excluding the bourgeoisie.
Russia declared a republic.
Trotsky and others freed.
Bolshevik resolution on the government wins majority vote in Moscow
Moscow Soviet elects executive committee and new presidium, with
Bolshevik majorities, and the
Viktor Nogin as chairman.
Third coalition government formed.
Bolshevik majority in Petrograd
Bolshevik Presidium and
Trotsky as chairman.
Bolshevik Central Committee meeting approves armed uprising.
Congress of Soviets of the Northern Region, until 13 October.
First meeting of the
Military Revolutionary Committee
Military Revolutionary Committee of the
Petrograd Soviet .
October Revolution is launched as MRC directs armed workers and
soldiers to capture key buildings in Petrograd.
Winter Palace attacked
at 9:40pm and captured at 2am. Kerensky flees Petrograd. Opening of
the 2nd All-Russian Congress of Soviets .
Second Congress of Soviets:
Mensheviks and right SR delegates walk
out in protest against the previous day's events. Congress approves
transfer of state authority into its own hands and local power into
the hands of local soviets of workers', soldiers', and peasants'
deputies, abolishes capital punishment, issues
Decree on Peace and
Decree on Land , and approves the formation of an all-Bolshevik
government, the Council of People\'s Commissars (Sovnarkom), with
Lenin as chairman.
George Orwell 's classic novella
Animal Farm is an allegory of the
Revolution and its aftermath. It describes the dictator Stalin
as a big Berkshire boar by the name of Napoleon.
represented by a pig called Snowball who is a brilliant talker and
makes magnificent speeches. However, Napoleon overthrows Snowball as
Trotsky and Napoleon takes over the farm the animals
live on. Napoleon becomes a tyrant and uses force and propaganda to
oppress the animals.
Revolution has been portrayed in several films.
* Arsenal (IMDB profile). Written and directed by Aleksandr
* Konets Sankt-Peterburga AKA The End of
Saint Petersburg (IMDB
* Lenin v 1918 godu AKA Lenin in 1918 (IMDB profile). Directed by
Mikhail Romm and E. Aron (co-director).
* October: Ten Days That Shook the World (IMDB profile). Directed by
Sergei Eisenstein and
Grigori Aleksandrov . Runtimes: Sweden:104 min,
USA:95 min. Country: Soviet Union. Black and White. Silent. 1927.
* The End of
Saint Petersburg , directed by
Vsevolod Pudovkin , USSR
* Reds (IMDB profile). Directed by
Warren Beatty , 1981. It is based
on the book
Ten Days that Shook the World .
* Anastasia (IMDB profile), an American animated feature, directed
Don Bluth and
Gary Goldman , 1997.
* Doctor Zhivago , a drama-romance-war film directed by
David Lean ,
1965, filmed in Europe with a largely European cast, loosely based on
the famous novel of the same name by
Boris Pasternak .
The White Guard
The White Guard ,
Mikhail Bulgakov , 1926. Partially
autobiographical novel, portraying the life of one family torn apart
by uncertainty of the Civil War times. Also, Dni Turbinykh (IMDB
profile), 1976 – film based on the novel.
* Russia portal
Soviet Union portal
John Reed (journalist)
John Reed (journalist)
White Terror (Russia)
* ^ Scholarly literature on peasants is now extensive. Major recent
works that examine themes discussed above (and can serve as a guide to
older scholarship) Christine Worobec,
Peasant Russia: Family and
Community in the Post Emancipation Period (Princeton, 1955); Frank and
Steinberg, eds., Cultures in Flux (Princeton, 1994); Barbara Alpern
Engel, Between the Fields and the City: Women, Work, and Family in
Russia, 1861–1914 (Cambridge, 1994); Jeffrey Burds,
and Market Politics (Pittsburgh, 1998); Stephen Frank, Crime, Cultural
Conflict and Justice in Rural Russia, 1856–1914 (Berkeley, 1999).
* ^ Among the many scholarly works on Russian workers, see
especially Reginald Zelnik, Labor and Society in Tsarist Russia: The
Factory Workers of St. Petersburg, 1855–1870 (Stanford, 1971);
Victoria Bonnell, Roots of Rebellion: Workers’ Politics and
St. Petersburg and Moscow, 1900–1914 (Berkeley,
* ^ A B See, especially, Dominic Lieven, Nicholas II: Emperor of
all the Russias (London, 1993); Andrew Verner, The Crisis of the
Russian Autocracy: Nicholas II and the 1905
1990); Mark Steinberg and Vladimir Khrustalev, The Fall of the
Romanovs: Political Dreams and Personal Struggles in a Time of
Revolution (New Haven, 1995); Richard Wortman, Scenarios of Power,
vol. 2 (Princeton, 2000); Orlando Figes, A People's Tragedy: The
Revolution 1891–1924, Part One.
* ^ Orlando Figes, A Peoples Tragedy, p370
* ^ Wood, 1979. p. 18
* ^ A B Wood, 1979. p. 24
* ^ A B C Wood, 1979. p. 25
* ^ Wood, 1979. p. 26
* ^ Joel Carmichael, A short history of the Russian Revolution, pp
* ^ Abraham Ascher, The
Revolution of 1905: A Short History, page 6
* ^ Allan Wildman, The End of the Russian Imperial Army, vol. 1
(Princeton, 1980): 76–80
* ^ Hubertus Jahn, Patriotic Culture in Russia During World War I
* ^ Figes, A People’s Tragedy, 257–258.
* ^ Wildman: The End of the Russian Imperial Army (I), p. 85–89,
99–105, 106 (quotation).
* ^ "Doklad petrogradskogo okhrannogo otdeleniia osobomu otdelu
departamenta politsii" ,
October 1916, Krasnyi arkhiv 17 (1926),
4–35 (quotation 4).
* ^ Service, 2005. p. 32.
* ^ When women set Russia ablaze, Fifth International 11 July 2007.
* ^ A B C D Beckett, 2007. p. 523.
* ^ Wade, 2005. pp. 40–43.
* ^ Browder and Kerensky, 1961. p. 116.
* ^ Tames, 1972.
* ^ Malone, 2004. p. 91.
* ^ Service, 2005. p. 34.
* ^ N. N. Sukhanov, The Russian Revolution: A Personal Record, ed.
and trans. Joel Carmichael (Oxford, 1955; originally published in
Russian in 1922), 101–8.
* ^ "Zhurnal Soveta Ministrov Vremennogo Pravitel'stva," 2 March
1917, GARF (
State Archive of the Russian Federation
State Archive of the Russian Federation ), f. 601, op. 1,
d. 2103, l. 1
* ^ Lenin, Vladimir (27 September 1964) . Apresyan, Stephen, ed.
One of the Fundamental Questions of the
Revolution (in Russian). 25.
Jim Riordan (4th ed.). Moscow: Progress Publishers. pp. 370–77.
* ^ Stephen Cohen, Bukharin and the
Bolshevik Revolution: A
Political Biography 1888–1938 (Oxford University Press: London,
1980) p. 46.
* ^ A B Stephen Cohen, Bukharin and the
Bolshevik Revolution: A
Political Biography 1888–1938, p. 46.
* ^ V. I. Lenin, "State and Revolution" contained in the Collected
Works of Lenin: Volume 25 (Progress Publishers: Moscow, 1974) pp.
* ^ V. I. Lenin, "The
Bolsheviks Must Assume Power" contained in
the Collected Works of Lenin: Volume 26 (Progress Publishers: Moscow,
1972) p. 21.
Isaac Deutscher The Prophet Armed
* ^ A B Riasanovsky, Nichlas V.; Steinberg, Mark D. (2005). A
History of Russia (7th ed.). Oxford University Press. ISBN 0195153944
* ^ article "Civil War and military intervention in Russia
1918–20", Big Soviet Encyclopedia, third edition (30 volumes),
* ^ "The
Kronstadt Mutiny notes on Orlando Figes, A People's
Petrograd on the Eve of
Kronstadt rising 1921.
Flag.blackened.net (10 March 1921). Retrieved on 2013-07-26.
* ^ Orlando Figes, A People's Tragedy: The Russian Revolution
1891–1924 (New York: Viking Press 1997), 767.
* ^ Kronstadtin kapina 1921 ja sen perilliset Suomessa (Kronstadt
Rebellion 1921 and Its Descendants in Finland) by Erkki Wessmann.
* ^ Robert K. Massie (2012). The Romanovs: The Final Chapter.
Random House. pp. 3–24.
* ^ Dmitrii Volkogonov, Lenin: A New Biography (New York: Free
* ^ Edvard Radzinsky, The Last Tsar: The Life And Death Of Nicholas
II (New York: Knopf, 1993).
* ^ Acton, Critical Companion, 5-7.
* ^ Edward Acton, ed. Critical Companion to the Russian Revolution,
1914–1921 (Indiana University Press, 1997), pp 3-17.
* ^ Robert Service, "Lenin" in Edward Acton; et al. (1997).
Critical Companion to the Russian Revolution, 1914-1921. Indiana
University Press. p. 159.
* ^ Robert W. Menchhofer (1990). Animal Farm. Lorenz Educational
Press. pp. 1–8.
* Acton, Edward, Vladimir Cherniaev, and William G. Rosenberg, eds.
A Critical Companion to the Russian Revolution, 1914–1921
* Ascher, Abraham. The Russian Revolution: A Beginner's Guide
(Oneworld Publications, 2014)
* Beckett, Ian F.W. (2007). The Great war (2 ed.). Longman. ISBN
* Brenton, Tony. Was
Revolution Inevitable?: Turning Points of the
Revolution (Oxford UP, 2017).
* Cambridge History of Russia, vol. 2–3, England: Cambridge
University Press. ISBN 0-521-81529-0 (vol. 2) ISBN 0-521-81144-9 (vol.
* Chamberlin, William Henry. The Russian Revolution, Volume I:
1917-1918: From the Overthrow of the Tsar to the Assumption of Power
by the Bolsheviks; The Russian Revolution, Volume II: 1918-1921: From
the Civil War to the Consolidation of Power (1935), famous classic
* Figes, Orlando (1996). A People\'s Tragedy: The Russian
Revolution: 1891-1924. Pimlico.
* Daly, Jonathan, and Leonid Trofimov, eds. "Russia in War and
Revolution, 1914-1922: A Documentary History." (Indianapolis and
Cambridge, MA: Hackett Publishing Company, 2009). ISBN
* Fitzpatrick, Sheila. The Russian Revolution. 199 pages. Oxford
University Press; (2nd ed. 2001). ISBN 0-19-280204-6 .
* Lincoln, W. Bruce. Passage Through Armageddon: The Russians in War
and Revolution, 1914–1918. (New York, 1986).
* Malone, Richard (2004). Analysing the Russian Revolution.
Cambridge University Press. p. 67. ISBN 0-521-54141-7 .
* Marples, David R. Lenin's Revolution: Russia, 1917-1921
* Mawdsley, Evan. Russian Civil War(2007). 400p.
* Piper, Jessica. Events That Changed the Course of History: The
Story of the Russian
Revolution 100 Years Later (Atlantic Publishing
Company, 2017), popular history.
* Rappaport, Helen. Caught in the Revolution: Petrograd, Russia,
1917–A World on the Edge (Macmillan, 2017).
* Pipes, Richard . The Russian
Revolution (New York, 1990)
* Pipes, Richard (1997). Three "whys" of the Russian Revolution.
Vintage Books. ISBN 978-0-679-77646-8 .
* Service, Robert. Lenin: A Biography (2000); one vol edition of his
three volume scholarly biography
* Robert Service (2005). A history of modern Russia from Nicholas II
to Vladimir Putin. Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-01801-3 .
* Service, Robert (1993). The Russian Revolution, 1900-1927.
Basingstoke: MacMillan. ISBN 0333560361 .
* Shukman, Harold, ed. The Blackwell Encyclopedia of the Russian
Revolution' (1998) articles by over 40 specialists
* Smele, Jonathan. The 'Russian' Civil Wars, 1916-1926: Ten Years
That Shook the World (Oxford UP, 2016).
* Stoff, Laurie S. They Fought for the Motherland: Russia's Women
World War I
World War I & the
Revolution (2006) 294pp
* Swain, Geoffrey.
Trotsky and the Russian
* Tames, Richard (1972). Last of the Tsars. London: Pan Books Ltd.
ISBN 978-0-330-02902-5 .
* Wade, Rex A. (2005). The Russian Revolution, 1917. Cambridge
University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-84155-9 .
* Wade, R. (2000). The Russian Revolution, 1917. Cambridge:
* Walston, Oliver (2005). Russian revolution. 76: Farmers Weekly.
* White, James D. Lenin: The Practice & Theory of
* Wood, Alan (1993). The origins of the Russian Revolution,
1861-1917. London: Routledge. ISBN 0415102324 .
* Gatrell, Peter. "Tsarist Russia at War: The View from Above,
1914–February 1917" Journal of Modern History 87#4 (2015) 668-700
* Haynes, Mike and Wolfreys, Jim (eds). History and Revolution:
Refuting Revisionism. Verso Books, 2007. ISBN 978-1844671502
* Smith, S. A. "The historiography of the Russian revolution 100
years on." Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 16.4
* Smith, Steve. "Writing the History of the Russian
the Fall of Communism." Europe‐Asia Studies 46.4 (1994): 563-578.
* Wade, Rex A. "The
Revolution at One Hundred: Issues and Trends in
the English Language
Historiography of the Russian
1917." Journal of Modern Russian History and
* Warth, Robert D. "On the
Historiography of the Russian
Revolution." Slavic Review 26.2 (1967): 247-264.
* Reed, John . Ten Days that Shook the World. 1919, 1st Edition,
published by BONI 1st edition. 1 June 1980. ISBN 0-14-018293-4 .
Retrieved 14 May 2005.
* Serge, Victor . Year One of the Russian Revolution. L'An l de la
revolution russe, 1930. Year One of the Russian Revolution, Holt,
Rinehart, and Winston. Translation, editor's Introduction, and notes
© 1972 by Peter Sedgwick. Reprinted on
Victor Serge Internet Archive
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* Steinberg, Mark, Voices of Revolution, 1917. Yale University
* Trotsky, Leon . The History of the Russian Revolution. Translated
by Max Eastman, 1932. Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 8083994.
ISBN 0-913460-83-4 . Transcribed for the World Wide Web by John
Gowland (Australia), Alphanos Pangas (Greece) and David Walters
(United States). Pathfinder Press edition. 1 June 1980. ISBN
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* Ascher, Abraham, ed. The
Mensheviks in the Russian Revolution
* Browder, Robert Paul and
Alexander F. Kerensky , eds., The Russian
Provisional Government, 1917: Documents. 3 volumes (Stanford, 1961).
* Bunyan, James and H. H. Fisher, eds. The
1917–1918: Documents and Materials (Stanford, 1961; first ed. 1934).
* Daly, Jonathan, and Leonid Trofimov, eds. "Russia in War and
Revolution, 1914-1922: A Documentary History." (Indianapolis and
Cambridge, MA: Hackett Publishing Company, 2009). ISBN
* Miller, Martin A., ed. Russian Revolution: The Essential Readings
* Steinberg, Mark D. Voices of Revolution, 1917. In the series
"Annals of Communism,"
Yale University Press
Yale University Press , 2001. 404pp On-line
publication of these texts in the Russian original: Golosa
revoliutsii, 1917 g. (Yale University Press, 2002)
* Zeman, Z. A. B. ed. Germany and the
Revolution in Russia,
1915-1918: Documents from the Archives of the German Foreign Ministry
(1958) in Questia
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