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Pavel Nikolaevich Milyukov (1859 1943)


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P.N. Milyukov

Pavel Nikolaevich Milyukov was born 15 on January (27), 1859 in Moscow, in family of rather poor architect, the native of noblemen, Nikolay Pavlovich Milyukov, and his wife Maria Arkadyevna coming from noble family of Sultanov. He was a senior from two children who were born in marriage. Mother was engaged in its early training. P.N. Milyukov remembered: "The father occupied with the affairs did not pay attention to children at all and was not engaged in our education. Mother directed us..."

He got an education in the 1st Moscow gymnasium located on Sivtsev Vrazhek. Already then the sphere of its interests lay in humanitarian field: it was attracted by antique authors, classical music, he began to write verses.

Upon termination of a gymnasium, summer of 1877, together with P.D. Dolgorukov P.N. Milyukov the volunteer was involved in the Russo-Turkish war of 1877 - 1978 as the treasurer of army economy, and then authorized Moscow sanitary group in Transcaucasia.

In 1877 it arrived on Historical and philological faculty of the Moscow university. In 1879, after the death of the father, Milyukov' family appeared on the verge of ruin. To provide worthy existence of mother (the younger brother Alexey with family did not live by then), he was forced to give private lessons.

At the university also the first interest of P.N. Milyukov in political activity was shown. He began to take part in student's meetings. In 1881 for participation in one of them he appeared at several o'clock in the camera of Butyrsky prison and was expelled from the university to which could return only a year later.

Though at entering a university P.N. Milyukov chose Istorikofilologichesky faculty, interest in history came only thanks to influence of outstanding professors P.G. Vinogradov and V.O. Klyuchevsky who appeared in his life as "the real stars of learning and talent". Lectures and V.O. Klyuchevsky's seminars imparted to him to Milyukov love for the history of the native land in which research he also decided to be engaged upon termination of the university in 1882. For this purpose it remained to work at department on the master thesis.

In 1892 the thesis was submitted to protection, and in 1896 is published under the name "State Farm of Russia of the First Quarter of HUS of a Century and Peter the Great's Reform". The popularity to P.N. Milyukov was brought by an original view of the course of transformations: he the first introduced the idea that Peter I's reforms were process by the spontaneous, prepared time course but not planned initially.

The work done by the young researcher, the professorate of the university appreciated, having nearly made decisions on assignment to P.N. Milyukov of doctor's degree at once. V.O. Klyuchevsky was the person who acted against and talked over the Academic council. The teacher could not reconcile to fast success of the talented pupil that forever spoiled their relations.

In the late eighties occurred changes in private life of P.N. Milyukov: he married Anna Sergeyevna of Smirnova, daughters of the rector of Trinity-Sergius academy S.K. Smirnov with whom he got acquainted in V.O. Klyuchevsky's house. Like the husband, all life being fond of playing a violin, Anna Sergeyevna loved music: according to people around, she was a talented pianist. At them was born three children: in 1889 - the son Nikolay, in 1895 - the son Sergey, the only daughter Natalya was a younger child in family.

P.N. Milyukov taught two years at the Moscow university, but in 1895 was fired. Taking part in reading educational lectures in the province, it indicated in one of them on the need of development of the Russian civic consciousness because of what it was banished to Ryazan.

The reference gave to P.N. Milyukov the chance to be engaged profoundly in archeology and also to begin to write the main historical work - "Essays on the History of the Russian Culture". In it it showed for a big role of the state in formation of the Russian society, claiming that Russia, despite the features, went the European way of development and also led the arguments concerning adaptability of Russian of "national type" to the borrowed public institutes.

Spring of 1897, having received the invitation from Sofia, P.N. Milyukov went to Bulgaria. Two years spent in Bulgaria and Macedonia he was engaged

teaching activity. During this time he managed to study history and the culture of the southern Slavs so that subsequently fairly was considered as the specialist in the Balkan question, largest in Russia.

Having returned to Russia in 1900, P.N. Milyukov at one of public meetings stated oppositional to the government of judgment because of what he spent about six months in prison. Having been released in the summer of 1901, he who deserved reputation of the oppositionist received the offer to edit the liberal edition "Osvobozhdeniye" which refused. But when the magazine began to appear, it began to cooperate in it. For "Release" he wrote the first program article - "From the Russian Constitutionalists" (1902). Cooperation in the magazine continued till 1905

In 1903 P.N. Milyukov went to the United States of America for lecturing, and returned home in 1905, having learned about revolution in Russia. Since April, 1905 he was in Moscow. Having gradually accustomed to a new political situation, he realized need of public transformations. P.N. Milyukov found possible implementation of changes only on condition of "the peace agreement of liberals and revolutionaries" for which implementation he sought in "The union of the unions" where he held the chairman's post in May - August, 1905. Its political views drew public attention and united around it considerable number of supporters: by 1905 it gained reputation of "the inveterate revolutionary". Adherents created the People's Freedom Party (Constitutional and democratic) in which drawing up the draft of the program he took active part.

P.N. Milyukov became history as the permanent party leader, having become in March, 1907 the chairman of its Central Committee. He developed the tactical line of cadets at all stages of existence of party, was one of the best party publicists and speakers. On the views in party he always took centrist positions. I.V. Gessen in the memoirs claims that policy of the party was "generally" defined by one person - P.N. Milyukov, and his influence was so strong that only thanks to it the party did not reflect "the interests of a certain public group".

The member of the Central Committee of the People's Freedom Party A.V. Tyrkova-Williams wrote about the reasons of unconditional leadership of P.N. Milyukov in Konstitutsionnodemokratichesky party: "In party there were many uncommon people. Milyukov rose over them, became the leader first of all strong wanted to be the leader. In him there was a concentrated ambition, rare for the Russian public figure. For the politician it is good line".

Its relation to activity of Constitutional democratic party - is almost fanatical: it was so absorbed by it that showed interest in people only in that degree in what they took part in common cause. From communication he tried to take out what reflected public opinion or "atmosphere" better

in its party. The coldness and indifference to people became the main reason that P.N. Milyukov was and always remained the great theorist of liberalism and the mediocre practical politician not capable to understand expectations of various population groups of the country.

All years of functioning of the State Duma P.N. Milyukov remained the ideological mastermind and the head of cadet fraction in spite of the fact that did not enter into the structure of I and II Duma because of property qualification.

Summer of 1906 P.N. Milyukov took part in drawing up "The Vyborg appeal". In the morning on July 9, having hardly learned that the manifesto on dissolution of the Duma is prepared, P.N. Milyukov, without losing minutes, "got on the bicycle and about 7 o'clock in the morning traveled over apartments of members of the Central committee (Constitutionally - democratic party), having invited them to gather immediately". The Central Committee of party in full strength went to Vyborg where together with the deputies of the Duma not concordant with the decision of the government, participated in drawing up an appeal to the population about the passive resistance to dissolution.

In 1906 the official publication of Konstitutsionnodemokratichesky party - the Rech newspaper began to be published, one of editors of which was P.N. Milyukov. On its pages he published the numerous publicistic notes and also wrote editorials of almost all numbers in which took up various questions of domestic and foreign policy of Russia.

On June 3, 1907 the government dismissed the II Duma, the new electoral law was issued. As a result of elections to the III Duma P.N. Milyukov at last was its part. Despite new working conditions, tactics of cadet fraction came down to more actively to join in the state activity through participation in work of the Duma.

Driving about over the country during the election campaign P.N. Milyukov got acquainted at the station with Nina (Antonina) Vasilyevna Lavrova who subsequently became his second wife. It is characteristic that, like the first spouse of the leader of cadets, N.V. Lavrova had great ear for music and played a piano.

In the III Duma P.N. Milyukov became the chief expert in foreign policy issues with which dealt also in the IV Duma and also acted on various problems on behalf of fraction. It is interesting that in one of the speeches he used in relation to A.I. Guchkov, by own words, "quite strong expression", "though quite parliamentary" for what he was challenged by the leader of Octobrists to a duel (which, however, did not take place).

During the first period of work of the IV Duma proceeding from the date of its opening on November 15, 1912 prior to World War I, the fraction of cadets led by P.N. Milyukov focused attention on questions of general political value, and

also on "criticism of behavior of the government in internal life of Russia which is carried out in the form of inquiries".

At the congress of Constitutional democratic party which was taking place on March 23 - 25, 1914 P.N. Milyukov offered tactics of "isolation of the government" which got support of most of delegates. It meant legalization of open confrontation of cadets with the power that received reflection in sharp speeches of representatives of party in the Duma in a form and in periodicals.

World War I at first introduced amendments in tactics of cadets. P.N. Milyukov became the supporter of the idea about the termination of internal political fight prior to a victory for the sake of which opposition forces have to support the government. He considered war as an opportunity to strengthen the foreign policy influence of the state connected with strengthening of positions in the Balkans and inclusion in structure of the Russian Empire of the Bosphorus Straits and Dardanelles for what got the nickname "Milyukov-Dardanelles".

But "the sacred unification" with the government proceeded not for long: an economic crisis in the country, defeats of army and internal political instability led to the fact that in the Duma the strong opposition to the government which in August, 1915 united in the Progressive block began to be formed. P.N. Milyukov was the organizer and one of leaders of the block considering that Russia will be able to win war only when replacing of the existing government with the ministry enjoying confidence of the country.

At the end of 1915 P.N. Milyukov endured the deep personal tragedy: during derogation from Brest his second son Sergey who left on war by the volunteer in 1914 was killed

1916 -peak of activity of the Progressive block. This year at the head of the Russian government there was B.W. Stürmer who concentrated in the hands three key positions of the Cabinet, the protege of the empress Alexandra Fiodorovna and G.E. Rasputin and therefore extremely unpopular in the ranks of opposition. It is natural that B.W. Stürmer's resignation became one of the main tasks of the block. The well-known Duma speech of P.N. Milyukov of November 1, 1916 which received in a historiography the conditional name "Nonsense or Treason?" on the basis of the refrain repeating in it became an important step to its implementation. Having constructed the speech on unknown in Russia the data collected by it during the trip abroad in the summer - fall of 1916, P.N. Milyukov used them as proofs of incapacity and B.W. Stürmer's evil intention, having mentioned in this regard even a name of the empress Alexandra Fiodorovna. Thanks to unknown in Russia of data the speech became very popular in the country because of what among emigrants, in the 20th, it was often perceived as "an assault signal" to revolution.

After the February revolution P.N. Milyukov took part in formation

Provisional government which part was as the Minister of Foreign Affairs. After Nicholas II's renunciation tried to achieve preservation in Russia of the monarchy before convocation of the Constituent assembly.

On a ministerial post the decline of political career of P.N. Milyukov began: war was unpopular in the people, and he sent on April 18, 1917 to allies a note in which he stated the foreign policy doctrine: absolute war. In it the main shortcoming of P.N. Milyukov politician costing it pits was shown: being convinced of correctness of the views it is also firmly convinced in need of implementation of program installations of the party, it unperturbably went to goals, without paying attention to external influences, to a real situation in the country, to mentalities of the population. Manifestation of discontent and demonstration in the capital after P.N. Milyukov's note caused resignation of the minister on May 2, 1917

In the spring - fall of 1917 P.N. Milyukov participated in political life of Russia as the chairman of the Central Committee of Constitutional democratic party, the member of constant bureau of the State meeting and Preparliament. In August

1917 at the State meeting in Moscow, according to V.A. Obolensky, P.N. Milyukov "unambiguously let know that in that phase which revolution entered the Provisional government is doomed and that only military dictatorship can save Russia from anarchy". Thus, he supported proposals of the general L.G. Kornilov. Then he actively performed with appeals to the Russian public about need of fight against the Bolshevism.

P.N. Milyukov did not host a Bolshevist revolution and began to use all the influence for fight against the Soviet mode. He supported armed struggle for which he sought to create a united front. After October, 1917 he went to Moscow for the organization of resistance to Bolsheviks. In November, 1917 participated in a meeting of representatives of the Entente about fight against the Bolshevism. Having gone to Novocherkassk, he joined the voluntary military organization of the general M.V. Alekseev. In January, 1918 was a part of "Donskoy of the civil council" created at Volunteer army of the general L.G. Kornilov for which wrote the declaration. It was elected to the Constituent assembly from the city of Petrograd.

In May, 1918, in Kiev, on behalf of a conference of cadet party P.N. Milyukov began negotiations with the German command on need of financing of the anti-Bolshevist movement. The convinced supporter of the Entente made up the mind to this step only because saw the only then real force capable to resist to Bolsheviks in Germany. As negotiations were not supported by most of cadets, he resigned the chairman of the Central Committee of party (later he recognized negotiations as wrong).

In the winter - spring of 1918 participated in the organization podpolno acting in

Moscow of "The national center", was a companion of its chairman.

In the same time P.N. Milyukov resumed the activity as the historian: in 1919 in Kiev there was "History of the second Russian revolution" republished in 1921 in Sofia. In this work the author offered the deep analysis of the reasons and value of revolution of 1917

In November, 1918 P.N. Milyukov left to Western Europe to achieve from allies of support of anti-Bolshevist forces. Some time lived in England where edited the The New Russia weekly which was issued in English the Russian emigrant Liberating committee. Appeared in print and journalism on behalf of the White movement. In 1920 published in London the book "the Bolshevism: international danger". However defeats of white armies at the front and the conservative policy of white leaders which did not manage to provide to the White movement of broad national support changed his views of ways of disposal of Russia of the Bolshevism. After evacuation of troops of the general P.N. Wrangel from the Crimea in November, 1920 he recognized that "Russia cannot be freed contrary to will of the people".

In the same years P.N. Milyukov received from the Soviet Russia tragic news of death from dysentery of the daughter Natalya.

In 1920 P.N. Milyukov moved to Paris where he headed the Union of the Russian writers and journalists in Paris and council of professors at Franco-Russian institute.

Summing up the results of anti-Bolshevist fight in 1917 - 1920, he developed "new tactics" with which theses he made a speech in May, 1920 at a meeting of the Parisian committee of cadets. The "New tactics" concerning the Soviet Russia directed to internal overcoming the Bolshevism rejected both continuation of armed struggle in Russia, and foreign intervention. Instead recognition of a republican and federal order in Russia, destructions of landowner land tenure, development of local government was provided. P.N. Milyukov considered it necessary to develop together with socialists the wide plan in land and national questions, in the sphere of the state construction. It was expected that this platform will get support of democratic forces in Russia and will inspire them on fight against the Bolshevist power.

P.N. Milyukov planned also creation of National committee as the body uniting emigration circles, close to cadets. He considered a coalition basis the agreement with Social Revolutionaries. Together with them he participated in holding a meeting of the former members of the Constituent assembly and also was a part of the Executive commission of a meeting.

Change of outlook put P.N. Milyukov in opposition to bigger

also made parts of the Russian emigration enemies of many cadets who were his adherents in Russia. In June, 1921 it left party and together with M.M. Vinaver formed the Parisian democratic group of the People's Freedom Party (in 1924 it was transformed to "Republican and democratic association").

The monarchists accusing P.N. Milyukov of unleashing of revolution in Russia and in all its consequences made several attempts to assassinate it. Even in Paris, the city with rather liberally adjusted emigrant colony, he had to live on the "semi-secret" apartment and "to poluskryvatsya", being afraid of their attacks. On March 28, 1922 in the building of the Berlin philharmonic hall shot at P.N. Milyukov, but

V.D. Nabokov, the famous cadet, closed himself the former party leader, according to him, "one of the most wonderful Russian people", "the person of huge, almost inexhaustible knowledge" therefore itself it was killed.

P.N. Milyukov wrote to emigrations much and was published: there were its works "Russia on a Change", "Emigration at the Crossroads", "Memoirs", and remained incomplete were begun.

During the period from April 27, 1921 to June 11, 1940 P.N. Milyukov edited the Posledniye Novosti newspaper appearing in Paris. In it a lot of place was given to news from the Soviet Russia. Since 1921 P.N. Milyukov found in Russia signs of revival and democratization which, according to him, went contrary to the policy of the Soviet government.

Gradually Russian nationalism and fear of fascism forced P.N. Milyukov to reconsider the views of some directions of policy of I.V. Stalin. So, in the 30th he began to assess positively foreign policy of Bolsheviks for its imperial character. For example, he approved war with Finland, arguing: "I am sorry Finns, but I for the Vyborg province".

In 1935 A.S. Milyukova died. The same year P.N. Milyukov married N.V. Lavrova.

In the conditions of World War II P.N. Milyukov unconditionally was on side of the USSR, regarding Germany as aggressor. He sincerely enjoyed the Stalingrad victory, estimating it as a change in favor of the USSR.

On March 31, 1943, at the age of 84 years, P.N. Milyukov died in Ex-le-Ben, without having lived up to a victory, but till last minutes lives remaining the true patriot of the native land. He was buried on the temporary site at the cemetery in Ex-le-Ben. Soon after the end of war only of the survived P.N. Milyukov's children, his eldest son Nikolay, transported the father's coffin to Paris, in a family crypt at the cemetery Batilyon where earlier A.S. Milyukova was buried.


Milyukov of P.N. Istoriya of the second Russian revolution. Issue 1 - 3. Paris, 1921 - 1924. P.N. Milyukov. Emigration at the crossroads. Paris, 1926.

P.N. Milyukov Russia on a change: Bolshevist period of the Russian revolution. T.1 - 2. Paris, 1927.

P.N. Milyukov. Essays on the history of the Russian culture. Paris, 1937.

P.N. Milyukov. Memoirs (1859 - 1917). In 2 TM, 1990.

P.N. Milyukov. Living Pushkin. M, 1997.


Hesse I.V. Years of exile: Vital report. Paris, 1979.

V.A. Obolensky. My life. My contemporaries. Paris, 1988.

N.V. Savich. Memoirs. SPb., 1993.

A.V. Tyrkova-Williams. On the ways to freedom. London, 1990.

V.V. Shulgin 1917 - 1919//Persons: Biographic almanac. M.; SPb., 1994. Ch.5.

Page 121 - 328.


Village of Alexandrov. A. Leader of the Russian cadets P.N. Milyukov in emigration. M, 1996.

V.P. Buldakov. Red distemper: Nature and consequences of revolutionary violence. M, 1997.

Vandalkovskaya M.G.P.N. Milyukov//P.N. Milyukov. Memoirs. M, 1990. T.1. Page 3-37.

Vandalkovskaya M.G.P.N. Milyukov, A.A. Kizevetter: history and policy. M, 1992.

N.G. Dumova. The liberal in Russia: tragedy of incompatibility. M, 1993.

P.N. Milyukov: The collection of materials on a celebration of its seventieth anniversary, 1859 - 1929. Paris, 1930.

M. Rayev Russia abroad: Cultural history of the Russian emigration, 1919 - 1939. M, 1994.


State archive of the Russian Federation. F. R-5856 - Pavel Nikolaevich Milyukov.

Hofmann Gabriel
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