Secret Societies of All Ages: Vol 2 - Charles Heckethorn

XII. The Nihilists

"There are alarmists who confer upon th% issuers of these revolutionary [Nihilistic] tracts the dignified title of a secret society, . . . but the political atmosphere of the country [Russia] . . . is no longer so favourable as it used to be to their development."
Athenaeum, 29th January 1870.

"A political movement that is perhaps the most mysterious and romantic the world has ever known."
Athenaeum, 23rd September 1882.

"Nihilism is the righteous and honourable resistance of a people crushed under an iron foe; Nihilism is evidence of life. . . Nihilism is crushed humanity's only means of making the oppressor tremble."
Wendell Phillips (in speech at Harvard University).

608. Meaning of the term Nihilist.—When the first edition of this work was published, but scanty information concerning this society had as yet reached Western Europe. As will be seen by the first quotation above, its scope and importance were at that date not understood; twelve years after, the same publication in eloquent and—coming from such an authority—significant language paid due honour to it. And indeed since 1870 the Nihilists have made their existence known to the world both by burning words and astounding deeds, which we will record as concisely as possible.

The term "Nihilist "was first used by Turgheneff, the novelist, in his "Fathers and Sons," where one of the characters, Arkadi, describes his friend Bazaroff as a "Nihilist." "A Nihilist?" says his interlocutor. "As far as I understand the term, a Nihilist is a man who admits nothing." "Or rather, who respects nothing," is the reply. "A man who bows to no authority, who accepts no principle without examination, however high this principle may stand in the opinions of men." This was Turgheneff's original definition of a Nihilist; at present he means something very different. The term was at first used in a contemptuous sense, but afterwards was accepted from party pride by those against whom it was employed, just as the term of Gueux had in a former age been adopted by the nobility of the Netherlands.

609. Founders of Nihilism.—The original Nihilists were not conspirators at all, but formed a literary and philosophical society, which, however, now is quite extinct. It nourished between 1860 and 1870. Its transformation to the actual Nihilism is due, in a great measure, to the Paris Communists and the International, whose proceedings led the youth of Russia to form secret societies, having for their object the propagation of the Liberal ideas which had long before then been preached by Bakunin and Herzen, who may indeed be looked upon as the real fathers of Nihilism, with whom may be joined Cernisceffski, who, in 1863, published his novel, "What is to be Done?" for which he was sentenced to exile in Siberia, but which mightily stirred up the revolutionary spirit of Russia. Herzen, who died in 1 869, aimed only at a peaceful transformation of the Russian empire; but Bakunin, who died in 1878, dreamt of its violent overthrow by means of a revolution and fraternisation with other European States equally revolutionised. Even during his lifetime an ultra-Radical party was formed, having for its organ the Onward, founded in 1874 by Lavroff, whose programme was, "The party of action is not to waste its energies on future organisation, but to proceed at once to the work of destruction."

610. Sergei Nechayeff.—Another important and influential personage in the early days of Nihilism was Sergei Nechayeff, a self-educated man, and at the time when he first became active as a conspirator, in 1869, a teacher at a school in St. Petersburg. He advocated the overthrow, though not the death, of the Tsar. But the conspiracy was prematurely discovered; Nechayeff had an intimate friend, the student Ivanoff, but ultimately they disagreed in political matters, and Ivanoff, declaring that his friend was going too far, threatened to leave the secret association. This was looked upon as an act of treason, and on the 21 st November 1869 Nechayeff slew Ivanoff in a grotto near the Academy of Agriculture at Moscow. This murder led to the discovery of the society, and eighty-seven members thereof were tried in 1871. Prince Cherkesoff was implicated in this attempt; he had on several occasions supplied the required funds. He was deprived of his rights and privileges, and banished to Siberia for five years.

Nechayeff himself escaped to Switzerland, but so great were his powers of organisation and persuasion that the Russian Government set a high price on his head, and finally succeeded in obtaining his extradition from Switzerland, no less than 20,000 francs being paid to the Zurich Prefect of Police, Pfenniger, who facilitated the extradition, which, according to all accounts, was more like an act of kidnapping. The Municipal Council strongly protested, and passed a resolution that even common criminals should not be given up to such Governments as those of Russia and Turkey. Nechayeff was sentenced to twenty years' penal servitude in Siberia, but he was too important a person to be trusted out of sight, and so he was confined in the most secure portion of the fortress Peter and Paul. For a time he was kept in chains fastened to a metal rod, so that he could neither lie down, stand up, nor sit with any approach to ease. But even in prison he never lost an opportunity of making converts; he received visits from high officials, nay, the emperor himself "interviewed "him. Of course all these visits were paid with a view of sounding him about the forces and prospects of the revolutionary party, but he remained true to them; and with wonderful self-abnegation preferred remaining in prison to delaying the killing of the Tsar, which delay would have been necessary had his friends undertaken his deliverance. In 1882 the friendly guards around him were arrested, and nothing more was ever heard of Nechayeff beyond the fact that he was cruelly beaten with rods in consequence of a dispute with the inspector of the prison, and died shortly after. Some suppose that he committed suicide, others that he was killed by the effects of the blows. He was keenly lamented by all the Nihilists, for all recognised his ability, his courage, and utter disregard of self.

611. Going among the People.—One of the earliest effects of the newly-awakened enthusiasm for social and political freedom was the eagerness with which young men, and women too, went "among the people." The sons and daughters, not only of respectable, but of wealthy and aristocratic, families renounced the comforts and security of home, the love and esteem of their relatives, the advantages of rank and position, to associate with the working classes and the peasantry, dressing, faring, and working like and with them, with the object of instilling into them ideas as to the rights of humanity and citizenship; of expounding to them the principles of Socialism and of the revolution. Thus in the winter of 1872, in a hovel near St. Petersburg, Prince Krapotkine gathered round him a number of working-men; Obuchoff, a rich Cossack, did the same on the banks of the river Don; Leonidas Sciseko, an officer, became a handweaver in one of the St. Petersburg manufactories to carry on the propaganda there; Demetrius Rogaceff, another officer, and a friend of his, went into the province of Tver, as sawyers, to spread their doctrines among the peasants; Sophia Perovskaia, who, like Krapotkine, belonged to the highest aristocracy—her father was Governor-General of St. Petersburg—took to vaccinating village children; in the secret memoir drawn up in 1875 by order of Count Pahlen, the then Russian Minister of Justice, we also find the names of the daughters of three actual Councillors of State, the daughter of a general, Loschern von Herzfeld, as engaged in this propaganda; and from the same document it appears that as early as the years 1870 and 1871 as many as thirtyseven revolutionary "circles "were in existence in as many provinces, most of which had established schools, factories, workshops, depots of forbidden books, and "flying sheets," for the propagation of revolutionary ideas.

But though the propagandists met with some successes among the more educated classes, and received great pecuniary assistance from them—thus Germoloff, a student, sacrificed his whole fortune, maintaining several friends at the Agricultural Academy of Moscow; Voinaralski, an ex-Justice of the Peace, gave forty thousand roubles to the propaganda—yet among the peasantry their successes were not equal to their energy and zeal. The Russian peasants, too ignorant to understand their teachers, or too timid to follow their advice, were not to be stirred up to assert the rights belonging to the citizens of any State. Moreover, the young men and women, who went forth as the apostles of revolution, were lacking in experience and caution; hence they attracted the attention of Government, and many were arrested. How many was never known. The propaganda was stamped out with every circumstance of cruelty, the gaols were filled with prisoners, the penal settlements with convicts; half the students at the universities were in durance, and the other half under the ban of the law.

612. Nihilism becomes Aggressive.—Nihilism doctrinaire having thus proved a failure, it became Nihilism militant. who had escaped the gallows, imprisonment, or exile, determined that revolutionary agitation was to take the place of a peaceful propaganda. They began by forming themselves into groups in different districts, whose object it was to carry on their agitation among those peasants only whom they knew as cautious and prudent people. The St. Petersburg group was at first, 1876-78, contemptuously called "The Troglodytes," but afterwards, after the paper published by them, "Land and Liberty." There was also a large "group" at Moscow. Most of its members had been students at the Zurich University; it included several girls, one of whom was Bardina, of whom more in the next section. Some of them had entered into sham marriages, which they themselves, in their letters, called farces, and which were performed without any religious ceremony, and were, in most cases, never consummated, their object being simply to render the women independent, and to enable them to obtain passports, and at many a trial it was proved that these women had, in spite of their adventurous lives and intimate association with men, preserved their virtue unimpaired. But the groups, though they held their ground with varying fortunes for several years, remained without results; the immensity of Russia, the vis inertia of the peasantry, and the necessity of acting with the utmost circumspection, rendered these local efforts futile. The leaders at Moscow wrote despairingly. Thus in a letter from Sdanowitch to the members at Ivanovo, a village of cotton-spinners, we read: "The news from the south are unsatisfactory. . . We send you books and revolvers. . . Kill, shoot, work, create riots!"

There seems to have been no scarcity of books or money: one member of the association was found in possession of 8545 roubles in cash, a note for noo roubles, and 300 prohibited books, and with another 2450 prohibited books were discovered. The central administration at Moscow, which became necessary when, after the arrests in March 1875, the members went to the provinces, provided books, money, addresses, and false passports; carried on correspondence (in cipher), gave warning of approaching danger and notice of the arrest of brethren, and kept up communication with prisoners. But this Moscow society was discovered in August 1875, and totally extinguished.

613. Sophia Bardind's and other Trials.—But Nihilism was not to be suppressed. It continued to gather strength, even among the peasantry, as was shown by the trial of Alexis Ossipoff, who in 1876 was condemned to nine years' penal servitude for having distributed prohibited books. For the same offence Alexandra Boutovskaia, a young girl, was sentenced in the same year to four years' penal servitude.

In March 1877 a new revolutionary society was discovered at Moscow; of fifty prisoners, whose ages ranged from fifteen to twenty-five years, three were condemned to ten years' penal servitude, six to nine years (two of them were young girls), one to five years; the rest were shut up in prisons, or exiled to distant provinces. Sophia Bardina, then aged twenty-three, was one of the prisoners, the daughter ot a gentleman; she had on leaving college received a diploma and a gold medal; but to further the Socialistic propaganda, she took a situation as an ordinary work- woman in a factory. Accused of having distributed Liberal pamphlets among the factory hands, she was imprisoned, and kept in close confinement for two years, without being brought to trial; she was included in the trial of the fifty, and sentenced to nine years' penal servitude in Siberia. On being asked wht she had to say why sentence should not be passed, she made one of the most splendid speeches ever heard in a court of law. In her peroration, she said,

"I am convinced that our country, now asleep, will awake, and its awakening will be terrible. . . It will no longer allow its rights to be trampled under foot, and its children to be buried alive in the mines of Siberia. . . Society will shake off its infamous yoke, and avenge us. And this revenge will be terrible. . . Persecute, assassinate us, judges and executioners, as long as you command material force, we shall resist you with moral force; . . . for we have with us the ideas of liberty and equality, and your bayonets cannot pierce them! 7/2/2021 8:05:16 AM"

Then came the monster trial of the one hundred and ninety-three. The whole number of persons implicated in this prosecution originally amounted to seven hundred and seventy. Of the one hundred and ninety-three who were tried, ninety-four were acquitted; thirty-six were exiled to Siberia, and Myschkin, one of the leaders, sentenced to ten years' penal servitude. Seventy prisoners are said to have died before they were brought to trial; the investigations in the trial lasted four years.

At these and other trials which took place in various provinces of Russia, the prisoners conducted themselves with the utmost courage and resolution. The Russian people appreciated their self-sacrificing patriotism. "They are saints!" was the exclamation frequently heard from the lips of even such persons as did not approve of the objects of the accused.

614. The Party of Terror.—The Nihilists continued to put forth manifestoes, in which they distinctly stated their demands. Whilst (justly) accusing the highest officials and dignitaries of dishonourable conduct, avarice, and barbarous brutality, they demanded their removal from the entourage of the emperor, to whom they then intended no harm. It was the court camarilla they were aiming at, and the suppression of the emperor's private chancellery, commonly called "the Third Division." But the more ardent Nihilists were for more drastic measures, and a portion of the party, represented by their organ, Land and Liberty, seceded, and took the name of the "Party of the People," which section was in 1878 divided again, and the seceders called themselves the "Party of Terror," and were represented by the Will of the People. The party had no definite plans at first; its first overt act was Solovieff's attempt on the life of the emperor (617). And the Government seemed to play into the hands of the Terrorists. It did everything it could to goad the people to desperation: the merest suspicion led to arrest; ten, twelve, fifteen years of hard labour were inflicted for two or three speeches made in private to a few working-men; spies were employed by Government to obtain, by false pretences, admittance to Nihilistic meetings, in order to betray the members. Naturally the Nihilists retaliated by planting their daggers into such traitors as they discovered and could reach. Thus Gorenovitch, originally a member of the propaganda, who had betrayed his companions, was, in September 1876, dangerously wounded, and his face disfigured for life by sulphuric acid; in the same month and year, Tawlejeff was assassinated at Odessa; and in July 1877, Fisogenoff at St. Petersburg.

615. Vera Zassulic.—But the signal for the outbreak of the terrorism, which distinguished the latter phases of Nihilism, was given, unintentionally, by the shot fired by the revolver of Vera Zassulic on 24th January 1878. General Trepoff, the chief of the St. Petersburg police, had ordered a political prisoner, Bogolinboff, to be flogged for a slight breach of prison discipline. Vera Zassulic made herself the instrument to punish this offence. Her life had been an apprenticeship for it. She was then twenty-six, and at the age of seventeen she had been arrested and kept in confinement two years, because she had received letters for a revolutionist. She had then passed her first examination as a teacher, and was working at bookbinding. At the end of two years she was released, but in a very few days was seized again, and sent from place to place, and finally placed at Kharkoff, nearly two years under police supervision. At the end of 1875 she returned to St. Petersburg. Her experiences had prepared her for her deed: she knew what solitary confinement was, and the resentment of Russian society against Trepoff—for even persons without revolutionary tendencies called him the Bashi-bazouk of St. Petersburg became in her mind a conviction that he must be punished, though she had no personal acquaintance either with Bogolinboff or Trepoff. She waited on the latter, presented a paper to him, and while he was reading it, fired her revolver at him, inflicting a dangerous wound, and then allowed herself to be seized, without offering any resistance.

Though the attempt was not denied at her trial, the jury pronounced her "Not guilty," and the verdict was unanimously approved as the expression of public opinion in Russia. Men saw in the acquittal a condemnation of the whole system of police, and especially of its chief, General Trepoff. Vera Zassulic was declared to be free; but in the adjoining street her carriage was stopped by the police; a riot ensued, for the people would not allow her to be seized again, and in the commotion Zassulic made her escape, and after a while found refuge in Switzerland. The emperor was furious at her acquittal, went in person to pay a visit of condolence to his vile tool Trepoff whom he made a Councillor of State and then ransacked the whole city in search of Zassulic, to put her in prison again.

616. Officials Killed or Threatened by the Nihilists.—The attempt of Zassulic was followed on the 16th August by the more successful one on General Mesentsoff, chief of the third section of police, who had become notorious by being implicated in a trial about a forged will and false bills of exchange. Taking advantage of his irresponsible position, he caused all the witnesses who might have appeared against him to be assassinated. It was known that he starved the prisoners under his charge, subjected them to all kinds of cruelty, loaded the sick with chains, "all by express orders of the emperor." The Nihilists resolved he must die. On 16th August 1878, just as he was leaving a confectioner's shop in St. Michael's Square, two persons fired several shots at him with revolvers. He fell, and his assailants, leaping into a droschky which was waiting for them, made good their escape, and fled in the direction of the Newski Prospect. One of them was a literary man, who in 1883 lived in Germany. His name was frequently mentioned in connection with German literature.

General Mesentsoff died the same day at five in the afternoon. In a pamphlet entitled Death for Death, which appeared directly after, the writer declared political assassination to be both a just and efficacious means of fighting the Government, which the writer's party would continue to use, unless police persecutions ceased, political accusations were tried before juries, and a full amnesty granted for all previous political offences. But the Government showed no intention of granting any such reforms. Its severity was increased, and trial by jury, in cases of political offences, entirely suspended. Special courts were instituted, guaranteed to pass sentences in accordance with the Tsar's wishes.

In September 1878, the St. Petersburg organisation called "Land and Liberty," and consisting of about sixty members, was broken up. A great many were imprisoned, others made their escape, but by the energy of four or five members the society was not only re-established, but was enabled to erect a printing-press, on which their paper, called after the society, was regularly printed. The Tsar having appealed to "Society" to assist him in putting down the revolutionary agitators, the attempts of "Society "to do so led to numerous riots, and in St. Petersburg and Kieff, meetings of students were dispersed by policemen and Cossacks, many of the students being wounded, and some killed. An association of working-men, comprising about two hundred members, whose objects in reality were only Socialistic, was betrayed by the Jewish spy Reinstein, and about fifty of the working-men were imprisoned. Reinstein, however, met his reward by being killed soon after by the Nihilists.

On the 9th February 1879, Prince Alexis Krapotkine, a cousin of the famous agitator, Peter Krapotkine, and Governor of Kharkoff, was shot on returning home from a ball, as a punishment of his inhuman treatment of the prisoners under his charge, which had led the latter to organise "hunger-mutinies" (638), many of them preferring starving themselves to death rather than any longer undergoing the cruelties the governor practised upon them. Goldenberg, their avenger, made good his escape.

On March 12, General Drenteln, the Chief of the Secret Police, was fired at by a Nihilist called Mirski, who managed to escape. The causes of the attempt were: firstly, that Drenteln had caused a prisoner to be hanged for trying to escape; secondly, his general cruelty, which had provoked another "hunger-mutiny"; and lastly, his having sent many Nihilists to prison.

617. First Attempts against the Emperor's Life.—Thus we see that the persons aimed at by the Nihilists gradually rose in rank, and the logical conclusion of aiming at the highest, at the Tsar himself, could not be evaded. The idea came to several persons simultaneously. As early as the autumn of 1878 a mine was laid at Nikolaieff, on the Black Sea, to blow up the emperor; but it was discovered by the police, the only one they did discover. About the same time A. Solovieff, who had been a teacher, but who on becoming a Socialist learned the trade of a blacksmith that he might thus place himself into closer connection with the labouring classes, came to St. Petersburg with the intention of killing the emperor. At the same period Goldenberg, still elated with his successful attempt on Prince Krapotkine, also reached the Russian capital with the same object in view the death of the Tsar. Solovieff and Goldenberg entered into communication with some of the chiefs of "Land and Liberty," and eventually Solovieff undertook the task. On the 2nd April 1879, he fired four shots at the emperor as the latter was walking up and down in front of the palace. Solovieff was seized, tried on the 6th June following, of course found guilty, and hanged on the 9th of the same month. At the trial he declared himself a foe of the Government and a foe of the emperor, and at his execution he preserved his composure to the last.

618. Numerous Executions.—After Solovieff's attempt a virtual state of siege was established throughout the whole Russian empire, and a police order was issued at St. Petersburg requiring each householder to keep a dvornik, or watchman, day and night at the door of the house to see who went in and out, and that no placards were affixed. In the month of May there were 4700 political prisoners in the Fort Petropowlovski, who were removed in one night to eastern prisons, to make room for those newly arrested. Eight hundred prisoners, under strong escort, were drafted off from Odessa to Siberia. In the same month the trial took place at Kieff of the persons who, about a year before, had resisted the police sent to arrest them for being in possession of a secret printing-press. Four of the accused were cited as unknown persons, because they refused to give their names and were unknown to the police, but during the trial the names of two of them oozed out. Ludwig Brandtner and one of the unknown, but calling himself Antonoff, were sentenced to be shot. The Governor-General of Kieff, however, ordered them to be hanged. Three others, and Nathalie Arrnfeldt, daughter of a State Councillor, Mary Kovalevski, ranked as a noble, and Ekaterine Sarandovitch, daughter of a civil servant, were condemned to hard labour for fourteen years and ten months. Ekaterine Politzinoy, the daughter of a retired staff-captain, for not informing the police of what she knew of the doings of the other prisoners, was sentenced to four years' hard labour. At another trial, held a day after, two other Nihilists, Osinsky and Sophia von Herzt'eldt, were condemned to be shot.

619. The Moscow Attempt against the Emperor.—On the 17th to the 21st June the Nihilists held a congress at Lipezk (province of Tomboff), at which Scheljaboff, a prominent leader, maintained, as we learn from his "Life," written by Tichomiroff, that since the Government officials, such as Todleben at Odessa, and Tschertkov at Kieff, were simply the tools of the Tsar, this latter must be personally punished, which was agreed to by his colleagues. It was decided to blow up the imperial train during the journey of the emperor from the Crimea to St. Petersburg. The mines under the railway line were laid at three different points near Odessa, near Alexandrovsk, and near Moscow. But owing to a change in the emperor's itinerary, the Odessa mine had to be abandoned; in that at Alexandrovsk, the capsule, owing to some defect, did not explode, though the battery was closed at the right moment, and the imperial train passed uninjured over a precipice, to the bottom of which it would have been hurled by the slightest shock; near Moscow alone the terrorists made at least an attempt.

They had purchased a small house close to the railway, and Leo Hartmann, an electrician, Sophia Perovskaia, and others, excavated a passage, commencing in the house and ending under the rails. The work was nearly all done by hand, and owing to the wet weather the passage was always full of water, so that the miners had to work drenched in freezing water, standing in it up to their knees. The attempt to blow up the emperor's carriage was made on the 1st December 1879, but his train, fortunately for him, preceding instead of following the baggage-train, the latter only suffered. When, after the explosion, the cottage was searched some of the apparatus, and even an untouched meal, were found; but the inmates had all disappeared, and were not afterwards apprehended, though many hundreds were sent to prison on the denunciation of Goldenberg (616), who a few days before the Moscow attempt had been seized by the police with a quantity of dynamite in his possession, and who, to benefit himself, as he hoped, betrayed a great number of his fellow-Nihilists. Finding that he did not thereby obtain any alleviation of his own fate, he committed suicide.

620. Various Nihilist Trials.—Another great trial of Nihilists took place at Odessa in August. Twenty-eight prisoners were tried, of whom three were sentenced to be hanged. They were Joseph Davidenko, son of a private soldier, and Sergay Tchoobaroff and Dmitri Lizogoob, gentlemen. The latter, who had sacrificed nearly his whole fortune, a large one, to the "cause," and of whom Stepniak gives so moving an account in his "Underground Russia," justly styling him "The Saint of Nihilism," was betrayed by his steward, Drigo, the Government having promised to give him what still remained of Lizogoob's patrimony, about £4000. The other prisoners were sentenced to various terms of hard labour in the mines, ranging from fifteen to twenty years.

In December another important trial of Nihilists was heard before the Odessa military tribunal. The most prominent prisoner was Victor Maleenka, a gentleman, who was tried for the attempt made three years before to murder Nicholas Gorenovitch, for having betrayed some of his fellow-Nihilists (614). It appeared that Gorenovitch had been enticed to a lonely place in Odessa, where Maleenka felled him with blows on the head, while a companion threw sulphuric acid over what was supposed to be the corpse of Gorenovitch, in order to destroy all traces. But the victim survived, and appeared as a witness at the trial. He presented a horrible appearance: the acid had destroyed his sight and all his features, and even his ears; consequently his head was enveloped in a white cloth, leaving nothing but his chin visible. It may, by the way, be mentioned, that he was then inflicting his awful presence on poor people as a scripture reader, being led about by a devoted sister. Maleenka and two of his fellow-prisoners were sentenced to be hanged.

621. Explosion in the Winter Palace.—The failure of the Moscow attempt did not discourage the Nihilists. They now adopted the title of "The Will of the People," and though in January 1880 two of their secret printing-presses were discovered and seized by the police, and numerous arrests were made, they managed to issue on the 26th January a programme, in which they declared that unless the Government granted constitutional rights, the emperor must die. The emperor replied by ordering greater severity and more arrests. Then the Nihilists planned a fresh attempt, more daring than any previous one, to blow up the emperor in his own palace. Its execution was undertaken by Chalturin, the son of a peasant, a very energetic agitator and experienced organiser of workmen's unions. Being also a clever cabinet-maker he easily, under the assumed name of Batyschkoff, obtained a situation in the imperial palace; he ascertained that the emperor's dining-hall was above the cellar in which the carpenters were at work, though between it and the latter there was the guardroom, used by the sentinels of the palace, and his plans were made accordingly.

So blind and stupid were the Russian police that—though towards the end of the year 1879 (Chalturin found employment in the palace in the month of October) a plan of the Winter Palace, in which the dining-hall was marked with a cross, was found on a member of the Executive Committee who had been apprehended, in consequence of which the police made a sudden irruption into the carpenters' quarters—nothing was discovered, yet Chalturin used a packet of dynamite every night for his pillow! A gendarme, however, was installed in the carpenters' cellars, and a stricter surveillance exercised over all persons entering or leaving the palace. This rendered the introduction of dynamite exceedingly difficult, and greatly delayed the execution of the project.

It may here incidentally be mentioned that what may appear to the reader to have been an exceptionally difficult undertaking, viz., to introduce dynamite into the imperial palace itself, was, after all, very easy. The Winter Palace, till then always—a change was made after the attempt—had been a refuge for numberless vagabonds, workmen, friends of servants, and others, many without passports, who could not have lived anywhere else in the capital with impunity. It appears there is an old law which gives right of sanctuary, as far as regards the ordinary police, to criminals taking refuge in an imperial palace. When General Gourko searched the Winter Palace, it was found that no fewer than five thousand persons had been living in it, and no one knew the precise duties of half of them. Chalturin gave startling accounts of the disorder pervading the palace, and of the robberies committed by servants. They gave parties of their own, invited scores of friends, who freely went in and out, yea, stayed overnight, whilst the grand staircase remained inaccessible to even highly-placed officials. The servants were such thieves that Chalturin, not to excite their suspicions, was compelled occasionally to take food and other trifles as "perquisites." True, the wages of the upper domestic servants were only fifteen roubles a month.

To resume our narrative. Chalturin suffered terribly from headaches, caused by the poisonous exhalation of the nitroglycerine on which his head rested at night. However, he continued to work on without exciting any suspicion, yea, the gendarme on guard tried to secure the clever workman, who at Christmas had received a gratuity of a hundred roubles, for his son-in-law. At last fifty kilogrammes of dynamite had. been introduced; the Executive Committee urged Chalturin to action; and on the 5th February 1880 the explosion took place, Chalturin having had time to leave the palace before it occurred. It pierced the two stone floors, and made a gap ten feet long and six feet wide in the dininghall, in which a grand dinner in honour of the Prince of Bulgaria was laid. Through an accidental delay the imperial family had not yet assembled, and thus escaped total destruction.

The explosion killed five men of the palace guard, and injured thirty-five some accounts say fifty-three. Some of the parties implicated in the plot were brought to trial in November 1880, but Chalturin was not captured till early in 1882; he was hanged on the 22nd March of that year, and only then recognised as the cabinetmaker of the Winter Palace. The Executive Committee, in a proclamation, regretted the soldiers who had perished, but expressed its determination to kill the emperor, unless he granted the constitutional reforms asked for. The Tsar, in reply, invested Count Loris-Melikoff with unlimited authority as Dictator. The attempt on the latter's life, made on 3rd March by Hipolyte Joseph Kaladetski, for which he suffered death on the 5th, was not prompted by the Executive Committee, who, on the contrary, expressed their disapproval of it, because Count Melikoff had shown some tendency towards Liberal ideas.

622. Assassination of the Emperor.—During the remainder of the year 1880, large numbers of suspected persons were arrested, tried by a secret tribunal, and many of the prisoners condemned to death or transportation to Siberia. In the previous year, 11,448 convicts were despatched eastward, and in the spring of 1880 there were in the prisons at Moscow 2973 prisoners awaiting transportation to Siberia and hard labour in the mines or government factories. But the Nihilistic movement, instead of being killed, acquired fresh strength by these wholesale persecutions; the Tsar, in his blind fury, seemed bent on his destruction and it was nearer than lie anticipated. The Executive Committee determined that now the emperor must die. Fortyseven volunteers presented themselves to make the attempt on his life. On, the 13th March 1881, the Tsar was assassinated. Returning from a military review near St. Petersburg, a bomb was thrown by Ryssakoff, which exploded in the rear of the carriage, injuring several soldiers. The emperor alighted, and a second bomb, thrown with greater precision, by Ignatius Grinevizki, exploded and shattered both the legs of the emperor below the knees, tore open the lower part of his body, and drove one of his eyes out of its socket. Within one hour and a half the Tsar was dead.

Grinevizki was seized, but he was himself so injured that he died shortly after his arrest. He was the son of a small farmer, who with great difficulty for some time managed to keep his family, consisting of eleven persons, but eventually fell into difficulties; his farm was sold, and he became insane. Ignatius, in the greatest poverty, attended several schools. In 1875 he was sent, as the best scholar of his class, to the Technological Institution at St. Petersburg; there he joined the students' unions for Radical purposes, in which, by his activity and address, he soon acquired great influence. In 1879 he would have been satisfied with a moderate constitution, but seeing that there was no prospect of even that small boon, he joined the Terrorists, working with and for them till the great work of his life was assigned to him. The Nihilists ascribe to him the fame of a Brutus, of Harmodius, and Aristogeiton! Return we to the other actors in this historic tragedy.

The signal for throwing the bombs had been given by Jessy Helfmann and Sophia Perovskaia, who were on the watch, waving their handkerchiefs. She and Helfmann were arrested, as also some of the other conspirators, Kibalcie, Micailoff, and Ryssakoff, and, with the exception of Helfmann, who, being four months pregnant, was reprieved, were hanged on the 15th April following. All the prisoners died like heroes; Perovskaia even retained the colour in her cheeks to the last. But the execution was a "butchery." (See Kolnisclie Zeitung and London Times of 16th April 1881.)

623. The Mine in Garden Street.—On the 25th March the revolutionary correspondence found on the prisoners led to the discovery of the conspirators' quarters in Telejewskaia Street, where Timothy Michailoff was arrested. A copy of the proclamation of the new Tsar's ascent to the throne was found on him, on the back of which were marked in pencil three places of the city, with certain hours and days against each. One place thus indicated was a confectioner's shop at the corner of Garden Street. Just round the corner from this confectioner's in Garden Street was a cheesemonger's shop, kept by one Kobizoff and his wife, whose mysterious disappearance on the day of the assassination led to the discovery of a mine under the street. From subsequent discoveries it became evident that this mine was not intended to blow up the emperor, but to stop his carriage, and afford others time to assassinate him, after the fashion of the haycart, which stopped General Prim's carriage at Madrid.

624. Constitution said to have been Granted by late Emperor.—It was said that the day before his death the emperor had signed a Constitution, and that by their action the Nihilists had deprived their country of the benefits it would have conferred. But what he had signed was merely the appointment of a representative commission to consider whether provincial institutions might not be widened, and the calling together of the zemskij sobor, or communal council, a measure Loris-Melikoff had strongly advised him to adopt, as a means of enlisting the people's co-operation in putting down Nihilism, the minister taking care to remind the emperor that such an assembly would, after all, be only deliberative, and that the final decision would always remain with the crown. The whole scheme was a mere blind to allay public discontent, with no intention on the Tsar's part of relinquishing any portion of his absolute prerogatives. The emperor's death thus did not deprive the Russian of any substantial benefit, but saved them a delusion.

625. The Nihilist Proclamation.—Ten days after the Tsar Alexander II. had been put to death, the Executive Committee issued their nobly-conceived and expressed proclamation to his successor, Alexander III, in which, on condition of the emperor granting (1) complete freedom of speech, (2) complete freedom of the press, (3) complete freedom of public meeting, (4) complete freedom of election, and (5) a general amnesty for all political offenders, they declare their party will submit unconditionally to the National Assembly which meets upon the basis of the above conditions. Hundreds of Easter eggs containing this proclamation were scattered about the streets of Moscow at Easter time. Nay, a rumour was then universally current in St. Petersburg, that had deputed one of their number to wait on the Emperor Alexander and explain to him in unambiguous words what they really wanted. The emperor received him, and after having heard what he had to say, ordered him to be placed in durance in the Fortress Petropowlovski; the police, however, failed to find any clue to his identity. So runs the story, and there is nothing improbable in it, considering the daring self-sacrifice which characterises all the acts of the Nihilists.

626. The Emperor's Reply thereto.—The emperor's reply to the Nihilistic proclamation, asking for such constitutional rights as are possessed by every civilised nation, was given in a manifesto, issued on the 11 th May, in which the emperor expressed his determination fully to retain and maintain his autocratic privileges. Furthermore, fresh executions were ordered, thousands of his subjects were exiled to Siberia, greater rigour was exercised against the press and every Liberal tendency. Not only did the emperor not grant any reforms, but he even retracted concessions already made, as, for instance, the reduction of the redemption money, whereby nearly four millions of his subjects continued to be kept in virtual serfdom. Ignatieff, the newly-appointed Minister of the Interior, whilst bravely seconding his master in his oppressive measures, tried to open a safety-valve to public dissatisfaction and indignation by fomenting anti-Jewish riots, the blame of which was laid to the charge of the Nihilists, who, however, published a very spirited reply, showing that it was not their policy to incite the people against the Jews, they being, as was proved at many a trial, and especially those of Southern Russia, great supporters of the Nihilistic movement.

But irrespective of this, it was no part of Nihilistic tactics to set one race or religion against another in the empire. Nor did the despoiling of private individuals, such as distinguished the violence against the Jews, enter into their plans. They robbed, they admitted, but only in the interest of the "cause" and of the people. They warned the emperor against listening to pernicious counsel. But the emperor closed his ears to this advice. Trembling for his life, he shut himself up at Gatshina, to which place he had fled. The day when he was to start, four imperial trains were ostentatiously ready at four different stations in St. Petersburg, with all the official and military attendants, while the emperor fled in a train without attendance, which had been waiting at a siding.

When in June 1881 the Court removed to Peterhoff, the railway between the two places was strictly guarded by troops; for every half verst about one-third of a mile English there was a sentinel with a tent. Besides this, the photographs of all the railway officials were lodged in the Ministry of Ways and Communications, so that any Nihilist, disguised in railway costume, might the more easily be detected.

627. Attempt, against General Tcherevin.—On November 25, a young man presented himself at the Department of State Police, which was the old third section or secret police under a new name, and asked to see General Tcherevin, the chief director of measures for assuring the safety of the emperor, stating that he had to disclose some business gravely affecting the State. On being ushered into the presence of General Tcherevin, he immediately drew a revolver and fired at the general, but missed him, and was secured. He declared that he was acting as the instrument of others, and for the good of Russia, but named no accomplices. His own name was Sankofsky. As the Russian Government suppressed as far as possible all allusions to the event and we have no account as to what became of Sankofsky he was probably tried with closed doors, and what was his punishment remains unknown.

628. Trials and other Events in 1882.—Numerous arrests, and trials of persons who had long been in prison, took place in 1882. Of twenty prisoners tried in February, ten, including one woman, were sentenced to be hanged. On I2th June Count Ignatieff, having rendered himself unpopular to the public by his anti- Jewish schemes, and incurred the disfavour of his imperial master by intimating to him that, without the introduction of the ancient States-General of the Tsars, the government of the country could not be satisfactorily carried on, under the time-honoured fiction of illhealth sent in his resignation. Count Tolstoi, who was known to disapprove of the anti-Semitic policy of Count Ignatieff, was appointed his successor.

Five days after, the Nihilists received a terrible blow. In a house occupied by them on an island in the Neva, there was discovered a great number of bombs and a large quantity of dynamite; but of more importance were the papers found on the Nihilists apprehended at the same time, from which it appeared that they were kept au courant of the Government correspondence in cipher with foreign countries, as far as it referred to themselves, which information they had received from Volkoff, one of the higher officials in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In July a secret printing-press of the Nihilists was discovered in the Ministry of Marine; its director committed suicide. Encouraged by the disasters which had befallen the Nihilists, the emperor ventured to return to St. Petersburg, and on the nth of September attended the fete of Alexander Nevsky, the patron-saint of the emperor, but slightly guarded, without evil results; and in the exuberance of his feelings he went so far as to extend his clemency even to the Nihilists, for on October 4 he graciously commuted the sentence of death, passed by a secret tribunal, on two Nihilists for having murdered a police spy, to perpetual labour in the mines and yet the Nihilists were not conciliated! For when, on the 21st November, the emperor and empress paid a visit to St. Petersburg extra precautions were taken on the part of the police and military authorities; all along the route, from the railway-station to the palace, police-officers in sledges and on foot were met with at every half-dozen yards; policemen were posted at regular intervals in the centre of the street, and the bridges over the canals were closely guarded by the marine police. But the emperor maintained his serenity.

As the Official Gazette informed its readers: "Towards the end of December the new chief of police, General Grossler, had the honour of exhibiting before his Imperial Majesty several policemen attired in the latest new and last old uniforms of the force. His Majesty carefully examined the difference, consisting mainly in alterations of colours and buttons." He also began to think of his coronation, which was announced to take place at various dates during the current year; but the ceremony was postponed from time to time, and did not finally take place until 27th May 1883.

629. Coronation, and Causes of Nihilistic Inactivity.—Great surprise was excited by the peaceful nature of the coronation; but it appeared by the trial (in April 1883) of seventeen Nihilists at Odessa, five of whom were sentenced to death, that the conspirators had made the most extensive preparations for killing the emperor at his coronation, as proposed in 1881 and 1882; but by the vigilance of the police, and the denunciation of spies, their schemes were frustrated, and the terrorists found it impracticable to mako the attempt in 1883. As they themselves declared afterwards, they came to the conclusion that such an attempt would damage their interests. They argued that the revolutionary movement in Russia embraces many persons of moderate views, whose opinions must be taken into consideration; that the people, who came to the coronation would not belong to a class likely to approve of a revolutionary plot. But the Nihilists profited in another way by the coronation. The whole force of the Government, and its most intelligent spies, being concentrated at Moscow, the Nihilists seized this occasion to spread their doctrines and to enrol supporters at St. Petersburg and other large centres, to which may be attributed the great riots which, after the coronation, occurred at St. Petersburg, which were intensified by the fact that none of the expected constitutional reforms were granted. The manifesto issued by the emperor on the coronation day consisted simply of a remission of arrears of taxes; criminals condemned without privation of civil rights had one-third of their terms remitted; exiles to Siberia for life had their sentences commuted to twenty years' penal servitude; those still lying under sentence for the Polish troubles in 1863 were to be set free; but confiscated property was not to be restored. Much more had been expected, and the Burgomaster of Moscow had been bold enough, in his congratulatory address to the emperor, to express those hopes, for which "presumption" he was visited with the emperor's displeasure.

But the disappointment of the people's expectation of an amnesty and a constitution greatly favoured the spread of Nihilistic doctrines. The Nihilists continued to hold secret meetings, issue their papers, flying sheets, and manifestoes. In September 1883 a number of officers were arrested, and a large depot discovered at Charkoff, containing arms of every kind, large quantities of gunpowder, dynamite bombs, and new printing apparatus. It was found that dynamite was being manufactured in Kolpino, close by St. Petersburg. Here 138 naval and 17 artillery officers were arrested and conveyed to the St. Peter and Paul fortress. In Simbirsk an artillery colonel was arrested, who had gained an enormous influence with the peasants, and incited them to revolutionary deeds.

630. Colonel Sudeikin shot by Nihilists.—On the 28th December the Nihilists took their revenge by shooting Colonel Sudeikin, the Chief of the Secret Police, in a house to which he had been enticed by the false information of an intended Socialist meeting. They also left a letter stating that the next victims would be Count Tolstoi, Minister of the Interior, and General Grossler, the Chief of the St. Petersburg police.

"If ever assassination could be palliated," says the Evening Standard of the 31st December 1883, "it is in such a case as the present. "When men know that sons, or brothers, or wives are being driven to madness or death by prolonged and deliberate cruelty, no Englishman can blame them very greatly if they take vengeance on their tyrants. In a free country, under just laws, assassination of officers for a fancied wrong is altogether un justifiable and wicked; but under such a regime as exists in Kussia, it can hardly be judged in the same way. Men may shudder, but they cannot unreservedly condemn."

631. Attempt against the Emperor at Gatshina.—The Nihilists continued to issue journals and proclamations, and to extend their influence among the working classes. Of course they also continued to meet with checks. Early in January 1884 numerous arrests were made among the factory hands at Perm, on the Kama, and many revolutionary documents were found in their possession. Towards the end of the month of December of the preceding year the emperor had met with what was thought, or at leat officially represented, to be an accident; while out hunting, his horses took fright, upset the sledge, and the emperor sustained a severe injury to his right shoulder. But in the following January it was rumoured that the accident was really a Nihilist attempt at assassination. It was said that about a fortnight before the murder of Colonel Sudeikin, Jablonski, alias Degaieff, who had sent Sudeikin the letter which led to his death, accompanied by a woman, arrived at the house of the imperial gamekeeper at Gatshina, and producing a letter from Colonel Sudeikin, informed him that the woman was to be received into his house in order to assist the detectives already at Gatshina. The woman remained, and whenever the Tsar went shooting, she attended, disguised as a peasant boy. On the day of the "accident" the woman was not there, but made her appearance next day and reported that the Tsar had met with an accident, one of the gamekeepers having carelessly discharged his gun close to the imperial sledge and frightened the horses. On the day after the assassination of Sudeikin, and when it was known that Jablonski had played the chief part in the tragedy, three detectives arrived at Gatshina and arrested the woman. She was said to be a sister of Streiakoff, who was hanged for complicity in the murder of Alexander II., and there were rumours current afterwards that she had secretly been hanged in one of the casemates of the Petropowlovski Fortress for the attempted murder at Gatshina.

Odessa then became notorious for the frequent murders and attempted assassinations of officers of the gendarmerie by Nihilists. During the summer, Colonel Strielnikoff and Captain Gezhdi were killed; cm the ipth August a determined attempt to kill Captain Katansky, the successor of Strielnikoff, was made by a second Vera Zassulic. The girl, Mary Kaljushnia, who made the attempt, was a merchant's daughter, barely nineteen, and her object, to avenge her brother, who had been sentenced to penal servitude for life in Siberia. She had for some time been under police supervision; she earned a miserable subsistence by giving lessons, maintaining herself on about fourpence a day. Her requests to be allowed to go abroad were persistently refused. On the date above named, she called on Captain Katansky, avowedly with the object of renewing her request, but in the course of conversation she suddenly drew a revolver and fired straight into the officer's face. But the ball only grazed his ear; she was seized before she could fire again, and on the loth September following sentenced to twenty years' hard labour. She was tried by the Odessa Military Tribunal with closed doors. Several political arrests were made about the same time, especially of students and young ladies, one of the latter a doctor of medicine.

632. Trial of the Fourteen.—In the month of October a trial took place in St. Petersburg of fourteen Nihilists, including six officers and the celebrated female revolutionist Figner, alias Vera Filipava, who had offered shelter to the regicide Sophia Perovsky, and of another woman, named Volkenstein, who had been implicated in the murder of Prince Krapotkine at Kharkoff in 1879 (616). The tribunal was virtually a court-martial with closed doors, and the greatest secrecy was observed throughout the week for which the trial lasted. The six officers and the two women, Figner and Volkenstein, were condemned to death, and the others sentenced to hard labour in the mines.

633. Reconstruction of the Nihilist Party.—After a years' silence, the organ published clandestinely in Russia by the Nihilists, the Narodnaia Volia, The Will of the People, reappeared, dated 12th October 1884, in large 4to. The losses suffered by the party were admitted; their type and printing-machines had fallen into the hands of the police, and some of their chief men were in prison. These losses they attributed to the denunciations of Degaieff, the assassin of Colonel Sudeikin, who had been a leading Nihilist, had turned traitor, but finding the Government not grateful enough, and fearing the vengeance of the Nihilists, had purchased his safety by acting again for the latter and killing Sudeikin. This latter being killed, and Degaieff rendered harmless, the Committee was able to reconstitute the party.

The Will of the People also gave a summary of the principal Nihilistic events during the year, comprising some interesting details concerning the great development of agrarian Socialism in the south of Russia, facts till then studiously concealed by the Government. The paper further stated that the revolutionary group, which had at one time separated itself from the party of the Will of the People, "The Party of the People" (614) and the revolutionary party of Poland, had coalesced with the Russian Nihilists. Among the other subjects treated, there was an obituary notice of Professor Neoustraieff, who was shot at Irkutsk for striking the governorgeneral of the province. The last pages of the paper were filled with a long list of arrests made, and a paragraph incidentally mentions that M. Larroff never belonged to the Executive Committee, though he is recognised as one of the editors of the review Onwards, published by the Nihilists at Geneva, and as a warm friend of the party.

634. Extension of Nihilism.—With such a constant hidden enemy in their very midst, the Government and people of Russia were in a state of chronic alarm. Count Tolstoi, the Minister of the Interior, whilst diligently searching for Nihilists, was also their especial victim. He daily received threatening letters; he scarcely dared stir out of doors, and whenever he did so, the extra precautions that had to be taken involved an outlay of five hundred roubles. And whilst despotism was more violent and resolute than ever, the trials constantly going on showed that Nihilism had extended its influence to the army, and that the military Nihilists did not belong to the lower ranks. Whilst the emperor shut up Nihilists in one fortress, he was a prisoner in another.

The official press of Russia about this time (end of 1884) was very sore on the subject of the comments of the English press on Russian affairs, accusing it of basing its opinions about Russia upon the prejudiced writings of expatriated Nihilists, and further charging the English Government with allowing Nihilists to use the very City of London as a place whence to send not only criminal proclamations, but explosive substances, such as dynamite, to Russia. "A family," it was said, "making inquiries about their son, accidentally came across an entire office of Russian Nihilists within the boundaries of the City proper." Of course had the English Government been cognisant of these proceedings, it would readily have put an end to them.

635. Decline of Nihilism.—But Nihilism apparently began to decline. A Nihilist manifesto, published in August 1885, lamented: "Truth compels us to own that the fierce struggle with the Russian Government, and the spirit of national discontent, which gave strength to our party, which was, in fact, its raison d'ttre, has ended in the triumph of absolutism."

In the following December a trial took place at Warsaw, at which six persons belonging to the revolutionary association called the Proletariate, including a justice of the police and a captain of Engineers, were sentenced to be hanged; eighteen were condemned to sixteen years' hard labour in the mines, two to ten years and eight months' penal servitude, and two others to transportation to Siberia for life. Early in January 1886 the police discovered a Nihilist rendezvous opposite the Annitchkine Palace, at St. Petersburg. A number of explosive bombs and a printing-press were seized, and several arrests were made. In April it was reported that a Nihilist conspiracy, directed against the life of the emperor, had been discovered at a place near Novo Tcherkask, the capital of the Don Cossacks, to which the emperor was expected to make a visit. Early in December some five hundred students attempted to celebrate the anniversary of a certain Bogolinboff, a once popular poet; but the police interfered, and a number of arrests were made, including many lady students, eighteen of whom were sent off from St. Petersburg by an administrative order, without the least notion whither they were to be taken, or what was to become of them. Such are the scanty notices we have of Nihilism in 1886.

636. Nihilistic Proceedings in 1887.—In 1887 the Nihilists displayed greater activity. In February another conspiracy was discovered, but the details were not allowed to transpire. All that became known was that a young prince, a cadet in one of the military schools, attempted to commit suicide by shooting himself, the reason alleged being his complicity in some plot which he thought had been discovered. An inquiry into the matter in one or two of the military and naval schools resulted in the arrest of a large number of young men, as well as of two or three naval officers.

On Sunday, the 13th March, the anniversary of the assassination of Alexander II., a determined attempt to kill his successor was made. The Russian police had previous information that such an attempt would be made, from Berlin, London, and Bucharest. On Saturday night a couple of men in a restaurant on the Nevsky attracted the attention of the detectives, who followed and watched them all night. Next day the police were able to watch the posting of six individuals, including three students, at three different parts of the route to be followed by the Tsar. They carried bombs in the shape of books, of a bag, an opera-glass, and a roll of music. As soon as they had apparently taken their positions they were pounced upon by the police and secured. Altogether fifteen persons were arrested, twelve men and three women, one of the latter being the landlady of the house at Paulovna, on the Finnish railway, where the bomb manufactory was discovered a day or two after the attempt of the 13th.

Nine of the twelve men were students, and the other three were two Polish nobles from Wilna and an apothecary's assistant. Seven of the accused were condemned to be hanged, and the other eight to various terms of imprisonment with hard labour, from twenty years downwards. It was reported at the time that each prisoner was found to have a small bottle containing a most active poison suspended round the neck, next to the bare skin. In case of failure, or refusal at the last moment to accomplish the task, secret agents of the party, who were on the watch all the time, were to strike the chest of the faint-hearted or unsuccessful conspirator, thus smashing the bottle and causing the poison to enter the wound made by the broken glass.

The Nihilists seem not to have been discouraged by the last failure, for on the 6th April next a fresh attempt on the emperor's life appears to have been made, though particulars, beyond those of the seizure of several suspected persons, were not allowed to transpire. But it was reported from Odessa that in the month of the same year (1887) 482 officers of the army arrived in that town under a strong military escort. They were accused of participation in the last attempt on the Tsar's life, and were to be transported to Eastern Asia.

In June the trial of twenty-one Nihilists, accused of various revolutionary acts in the years 1883 and 1884, took place at St. Petersburg. The prisoners included the sons of college councillors, priests, superior officers, a Don Cossack, tradesmen, peasants, and two women, one of them a staff-captain's daughter. Fifteen were condemned to death, but on the Court's recommendation, eight death sentences were mitigated to from four to fifteen years' hard labour, and subsequently the emperor for once reprieved the remaining seven, five of whom were to undergo hard labour in Siberia for life, and the others from eighteen to twenty years each.

Another blow was sustained by the Nihilists at the end of November, when the police discovered laboratories for the manufacture of dynamite in the Vassili, Ostrou, and Peski quarters of St. Petersburg. No wonder that they began to utter cries of despair towards the end of the year 1887.

"Liberalism," they said, in one of their publications, "has not eradicated the feeling of loyalty in society. . . Even the 'intelligent Liberals' have rejected the invitation to establish free printing offices, . . . or even to serve the revolutionary press abroad by sending it articles for publication." The Messenger of the Will of the People, which was the official exponent of the party during the year, ceased to appear "for want of intellectual and material aid from Russia."

"Little is to be expected," the Nihilists said elsewhere, "from the present generation of Russians. . . Russian society, with its dulness, emptiness, and ignorance, is to blame. . . Most of the so-called cultured classes belong to that category of passengers who are made to travel in cattle-trucks. . . Russian society has become a flock of sheep, driven by the whip and the shepherds' dogs."

637. Nihilism in 1888.—Little or nothing was heard of Nihilism in that year. There was indeed a rumour in January that a new Nihilist conspiracy against the life of the Tsar had been discovered at St. Petersburg, and that many officers and others had been arrested; but it went no further than a rumour. Extensive police precautions were adopted at St. Petersburg early in March, in anticipation of Nihilist manifestations on March 13, the anniversary of the death of the late Tsar; but the day went by without disturbances of any kind. The accident which occurred to the Tsar's train in November 1888 is very generally supposed to have been the result of a Nihilist plot.

But the unchangeable despotic character of the Russian Government was again exemplified during the year by its anti-Semitic policy at two extremities of European Russia. Some two thousand Jews received notice to quit Odessa, and the expulsion laws against the persecuted Hebrews were also enforced in Finland. The Finnish Diet having refused to adopt the Russian view of the case, the Government determined upon enforcing the law as it exists in Russia; all the Jews to leave within a year, with the exception of those who had served in the army. According to the emperor's own statement, this wholesale expulsion of the Jews was due to the fact that Jews have been mixed up with all Nihilistic plots.

In December 1888 the papers reported the discovery by the Russian Government of a ramification of among the young and educated Armenians, upon the model of the "Young Italy" societies, as they were constituted in 1848. The object of the Armenian societies is revolution against Russian rule, and the establishment of Armenian union and independence.

638. Slaughter of Siberian Exiles, and Hunger-Strikes.—Towards the end of the year 1889, the civilised world was horrified by the account of the slaughter of a number of exiles at Yakutsk, on their way to the extreme east of Siberia, near the shore of the Polar Sea. These exiles were not criminals, but exiled by "administrative order," that is to say, they had not been tried and convicted by any tribunal: Government, not the Law, arbitrarily had ordered them to Siberia as suspects. Simply for asking to take with them sufficient food and clothing for the terrible journey still before them, they were declared to have resisted the authorities, and a number of them shot down; a woman, Sophie Gourewitch, was ripped open by bayonets; the vice-governor himself twice fired at the exiles. Not satisfied with this butchery, the surviving exiles were tried by court-martial; three were sentenced to death, and many others to long terms of penal servitude in the mines.

Early in 1890, still more horrifying details of hunger-strikes among the exiles reached Europe, and of the means adopted by the Russian Government to repress them. One lady, Madame Sihida, was dragged out of bed, where she lay ill, and received one hundred blows. She died in two days from the effects. Many of her companions in misery took poison; so did many of the male prisoners. This occurred at Kara, in Eastern Siberia. In fact, the condition of Russian prisons, especially of those where political prisoners are confined, is too horrible to be described in these pages; the moral and physical suffering wantonly inflicted on the victims of a Tsarish cruelty is without a parallel in the history of absolutism. The Tsar cannot be absolved from personal responsibility in the matter: to say that he was not aware of the cruelties practised in his name, is saying in as many words that his neglect of inquiring into them encouraged them; but he must know them; they had been frequently communicated to Alexander III., notably in a long letter written in March 1890 by Madame Tshebrikova, a lady of position, and not in any way connected with the Nihilists; but for writing it she was arrested, and sent to Penza, in the Caucasus, and placed under strict police surveillance.

639. Occurrences in 1890.—The Russian students having in recent times shown decidedly Liberal tendencies, Government endeavoured to repress them, which led to repeated riots and endless arrests, as many as five hundred and fifty students, who had protested against the new and oppressive statutes promulgated by the authorities, being arrested at Moscow in March 1890. In April all the police stations and prisons of St. Petersburg were full of arrested students; the ringleaders, mostly young men belonging to good families, were eventually sent as private soldiers into the disciplinary battalions near Orenburg.

In May, fourteen Russians were arrested in Paris, which has always been a favourite place of residence with Nihilists, Colonel Sokoloff, who was expelled from France, Krukoff, a printer, and Prince Krapotkine being among their chiefs. The prisoners above mentioned were proved to have been in possession of bombs, many of which had been manufactured in Switzerland. There were two women among the accused; they were acquitted, the men were sentenced to three years' imprisonment.

In November in the same year the Russian General Seliverskoff was found in his room in a Paris hotel, shot in the head; he died on the following day without having recovered consciousness. He had been a Russian spy on the Nihilists.

In the same month five Nihilists were tried at St. Petersburg, one of them being a woman, Sophie Gunzburg, who was arrested in Russia, in possession of bombs and revolutionary proclamations. Four of the prisoners were condemned to death. Another trial took place about the same time, and as in the first-mentioned trial the principal figure was a woman, so in this second trial the chief personage was a young girl, Olga Ivanovsky, niece of Privy Councillor Idinsky, director of a department of the Holy Synod. As the names of high ecclesiastical functionaries were concerned in the affair, the authorities shrouded it in more than the usual secrecy, so that no details have reached the outer world.

640. Occurrences from 1891 to Present Date.—The Nihilists appear to have been rather, but not quite, inactive during these later years. In May 1891 a secret printing-press was discovered and seized at St. Petersburg. In November of the same year a far-reaching political conspiracy was discovered at Moscow, and some sixty persons, belonging to the nobility, the literary profession, and the upper middle class, were arrested. In December a great number of arrests were made, some of the accused being found to be in possession of plans and details of the imperial palaces. In 1892 a number of Nihilists were arrested at Moscow, for an alleged conspiracy to kill the Tsar on his return journey from the Crimea. An anonymous letter had warned the authorities that the attempt was to be mado at a small railway station. The line was examined, and a bomb discovered under each line of rails. In spite of these failures, the Nihilistic agitation was actively carried on. The revolutionists endeavoured to stir up the lower classes against the Tsar by telling them that, though he pretended to supply the masses with food during the famine, he allowed his subordinates to rob the people. The insinuation, however, had but little success with the Russian people of the lower class, brought up in slavish adoration of the emperor, who can do no wrong. In the month of December, Major-General Droszgovski was assassinated at Tashkend, in Russian Turkestan. He had been acting as president of a court-martial for the trial of a number of Nihilists, most of whom were sentenced to various terms of imprisonment. To avenge them their friends killed the president.

In May 1893 the decapitated body of a Russian student was discovered in a forest, near Plussa Station, on the Warsaw railway. The deceased was supposed to have been a member of a secret society, and to have been killed to prevent his revealing its secrets. Two young men were arrested for the crime, and immediately hanged. A widespread Nihilistic conspiracy against the life of the Tsar was discovered (in September 1893) a Moscow, in consequence of which eighty-five university students, eight professors, and five ladies belonging to the aristocracy, were arrested.

Early in 1894 the Government Commission appointed to inquire into the condition of Siberian prisons issued its report, in which instances without number were recorded of merciless floggings, lopping off of arms and fingers by sabre cuts, of cannibalism under stress of famine. During the whole of 1892 there was an almost continuous string of convoys of corpses from Onor, the prison on the island of Saghalien, to Rykovskaya, the residence of the authorities, and most of the bodies were terribly mutilated. In 1893, if any one of a band of convicts failed in his work, he was at once put on half rations, then on third rations; and when he could work no more, the inspector finished him with a revolver bullet.

What wonder, then, that in November 1894 three secret printing-presses, in full working order, with a great quantity of Nihilistic literature, were discovered at Kieff, at Kharkoff, and at Nicolaieff respectively? The press at Kharkoff was being worked by the students of the university in that city. Upwards of eighty persons were arrested. In September 1895, it was reported that a widespread Nihilistic plot against the life of the Tsar and the imperial family had been discovered by the Russian police. Some of the leaders were quietly arrested, while dynamite bombs, arms, and piles of revolutionary pamphlets were seized during a number of domiciliary visits at Moscow. In March of the year 1896 six officers of the garrison of Kieff, including a colonel, were arrested for participating in a Nihilist conspiracy. According to the Central News, in October 1896 the Russian Custom-house officers confiscated on the Silesian frontier a quantity of light canes destined for sale to the upper classes, and containing in their hollow interior thousands of Nihilist proclamations, printed on tissue paper. The Nihilists, evidently, are still at work. There is a Nihilist club, composed chiefly of Jews, in London, who publish a paper, similar in character to Most's Freiheit (512) in Yiddish, and printed with Hebrew type.

641. Nihilistic Finances.—The number of active Nihilists never amounted to more than a few dozen men and women; they may have had twelve or thirteen hundred supporters, who assisted the leaders by distributing their books, pamphlets, etc., concealing them when pursued by the police or otherwise in danger, assisting them to escape from prison, assisting them with money, etc.; though those who sympathised with the Nihilists, without, however, taking any active part in the propaganda, may be assumed to have been perhaps one hundred thousand. Whence did the Nihilists obtain the means for executing their schemes? for creating a literature, purchasing materials, travelling, carrying out terroristic measures, supporting and delivering prisoners?

In 1869 Nechayeff had obtained from Herzen the revolutionary fund collected in Switzerland, and amounting to more than £1000; the members of the society, of course, gave their contributions; Lizogoob sacrificed his fortune of about 200,000 roubles to the "cause"; the Justice of the Peace Voinaralski gave 40,000 roubles; a Dr. Weimar, a very active Nihilist, supplied large sums; rich people, who sympathised with Nihilism, but would not compromise themselves, contributed money either anonymously, or ostensibly for charitable purposes. Besides these voluntary contributions, the Nihilists obtained compulsory ones by threatening timorous rich men, or such as were known to have enriched themselves at the expense of the State, that unless they assisted the Nihilistic cause, they would be condemned to death by the Executive Committee. The Nihilists also occasionally helped themselves to the Government cash; in 1879 they robbed the State bank of Kharkoff by means of a subterranean passage, and carried off one million and a half of roubles. But their outgoings were considerable; the Moscow mine and the other two attempts made at the same time, for instance, cost nearly £4000, and consequently the Nihilists were often hard pressed for money. The most extravagant reports were circulated at times as to their financial resources; thus the Cologne Gazette in April 1879 declared the Nihilistic propaganda to count as many as 19,000 members, and to be possessed of a fund amounting to two millions of roubles. The Nihilists accomplished their objects with a tenth of that amount. In fact, in 1881 they were driven to imitate the device of Peter's Pence and the Red Cross. In January 1882 they founded the association of the Red Cross, and made appeals in the Will of the People for contributions. This appeal was published by Lavroff in the Paris paper L'Intransiyeant, which led to his expulsion from France. However, according to the Will of the People and other Nihilistic publications, 53,000 roubles were received in 1881. But the figures dealing with Nihilistic finances can never be anything but approximate. They received contributions from French, Swiss, German, English, Italian, and Austrian sympathisers, a fact showing the international unity of the Revolutionists, and the extensive foreign connections of the Russian Nihilists.

642. The Secret Press.—The revolutionary party early felt the necessity of propagating their opinions by the press, hence in the earliest stages of the movement, as far back as the year 1860, secret printing-presses were set up; and all the various organisations established afterwards, attempted to have their own presses; but the difficulty of maintaining secrecy was too great; one after the other they were discovered and seized. At last, in 1876, Stephanovitch, a leading spirit among the Nihilists, succeeded in establishing a secret printing-press at Kieff. He lived in one house, and had the press at another. A friend of his who lodged with him was arrested; he sent a note to Stephanovitch to warn him; but the messenger handed the note to the police, which led to the arrest of Stephanovitch. His sole object now was to save- the printing apparatus. A woman and her husband presented themselves before the landlord of the house where the printing office was, and producing the key of the rooms, the woman told the landlord that she was Stephanovitch's sister, who had given it her, and given her and her husband permission to occupy the rooms till his return. The landlord had no suspicion, and made no objection. The pair secretly removed all the printing apparatus and left the house. Soon after the police made their appearance; they had made a house to house visitation at Kieff in search of the printing office, and the few types and proofs they found here and there left in corners, satisfied them that they had come too late. The printing apparatus was carried to Odessa, but what became of it there, is not known.

A clever and enterprising Jew, Aaron Zundelevic, a native of Wilna, in 1877 managed to smuggle into St. Petersburg all the necessary apparatus for a printing office, which could print works of some size. He learned the compositor's art, and taught it to four other persons. For four years the police discovered nothing, until treachery and an accident came to their aid. Not only the members of the organisation "Land and Liberty," which maintained the office, but even the editors and contributors of the journal printed there, did not know where it was. It was occupied by four persons. Mary Kriloff, who acted as mistress of the house, was a woman of about forty-five. She had been implicated in various conspiracies. A pretty, fair girl passed as the servant of Madame Kriloff. Intercourse with the outer world was maintained by a young man of aristocratic, but silent, manners. He was the son of a general, and nephew of a senator, and was supposed to hold a ministerial appointment, but his portfolio contained only MSS. and proofs of the prohibited paper. The other compositor, Lubkin, was only known by the nickname of the "bird," given to him on account of his voice. He was only twenty-three years of age; consumption was written on his face; having no passport, he was compelled always to remain indoors. When after four hours' desperate resistance the printing office of "Land and Liberty" fell into the hands of the military, he shot himself.

The apparatus, as a rule, was extremely simple; a few cases of various kinds of type, a small cylinder of a kind of gelatinous substance, a large cylinder covered with cloth, which served as the press, a few jars of printing ink, a few brushes and sponges. Everything was so arranged that in a quarter of an hour it could be concealed in a large cupboard. To allay any suspicion the dvornik could conceive, they made him enter the rooms under various pretences, having first removed every vestige of the printing operation.

We have seen in preceding paragraphs how the capture by the police of one printing-press speedily led to the setting up of another; and that the number scattered all over Russia must have been great is evident from the number which were discovered, and from which the multitude of those undiscovered may be inferred. And their publications were scattered all over the country. Handbills and placards seemed to grow out of the earth. The army was deluged with them, the labourer found them in his pocket, the emperor on his writing-table. Nihilists wandered all over Russia, leaving them in thousands at every halting-place. Jessy Helfmann was a travelling post office; her pockets were always full of proclamations, newspapers, handbills, and tickets for concerts and balls for the benefit of prisoners, or of the secret press.

643. Nihilistic Measures of Safely.—When Nihilism began to assume terroristic features, and the vigilance of the police consequently became more strict, and arrests were of daily occurrence, the Nihilists had to adopt various means for their self-protection. A primary condition was the possession of a passport, for in Russia every one above the peasantry must be registered, and have a passport. Many young men matriculated as students, not with a view of attending university lectures, but to obtain the card of legitimation. Non-students at first paid high prices for passports, but eventually took to manufacturing them. Every society established its own passport office, forging seals and signatures. One of these offices, furnished with every necessary appliance, was discovered by the police at Moscow in 1882. "Illegal" men, that is to say, those who lived with a false passport, or one lent by a friend, of course did not go by their true names, and their correspondence was taken care of by friends. The Nihilist had to lead a very regular life, not to excite the suspicions of the dvornik. Their larger meetings took place in "conspiracy-quarters," which were carefully selected. The windows must be so placed that signals can easily be displayed or changed. The walls of the room must not be too thin, and the doors close accurately, so that sounds may not reach the outside. There must be a landing outside, to command the staircase, so that in case of a surprise a few resolute men can resist a troop of gendarmes, until all compromising papers and other objects are removed.

The conspiracy-quarters generally were regular arsenals; at the storming of the office of the Will of the People, every one of the five Nihilists was armed with two revolvers; the dozen gendarmes were afraid to advance, and soldiers had to be sent for; from eighty to a hundred shots were fired on that occasion. When to some of the Nihilists all these precautions became irksome, and they consequently neglected them, Alexander Michailoff, to whom they therefore gave the nickname of dvornik, severely censured them; he would follow his associates in the street, to see if they behaved with caution, or he would suddenly stop one, and ask him to read a signboard, and if he found him shortsighted, insist on his wearing glasses. He insisted on their dressing" respectably, and would often himself find the means for their doing so. He himself lived like the Red Indian on the war-path. He endeavoured to know all the spies, to beware of them; he had a list of about three hundred passages through houses and courtyards, and by his intimate knowledge of places of concealment, saved many a companion from arrest.

The Nihilists frequently change their lodgings, and keep them secret. Then they rely also for their safety on the Ukrivaheli, or Concealers, who form a large class in every position, beginning with the aristocracy and the upper middle class, and reaching even down to the police, who, sharing the revolutionary ideas, make use of their social or official position to shelter the combatants by concealing, whenever necessary, both objects and men. Strange causes sometimes led to the most unlikely people becoming "Concealers." Thus a Madame Horn, a Danish lady, seventy years of age, became one. She had married a Russian, who held some small appointment in the police. When the Princess Dagmar became the wife of the hereditary Prince of Russia, Madame Horn wished the Danish ambassador to obtain for her husband some appointment in the establishment of the new archduchess. The ambassador was rude enough to laugh at her. This turned her in favour of the Nihilists, who she hoped would punish the ambassador. She began by taking care of the Nihilists' forbidden books, attended to their correspondence, and eventually concealing the conspirators themselves. Thanks to her age, her prudence, presence of mind, she escaped all suspicion. Her husband, whom she ruled absolutely, had to furnish her with all the police intelligence he could gather.

644. The Nihilists in Prison.—In spite of all their precautionary measures, many of the Nihilists, as we have seen, fell into the hands of the police. The historian, unfortunately, has no impartial reports to rely on as to their treatment in prison; only once, during the ministry of Count Loris-Melikoff, Russian papers were allowed to partly reveal the secrets of Russian imprisonment and Siberian exile, which virtually confirmed all the "underground" literature had asserted, and these revelations are horrifying. They show up the imperfection and cruelty of Russian state institutions, the brutality and irresponsible arbitrariness of Russian officials. We find that the accused are kept in prison and what prisons! for two or three years before being brought to trial, and for what crime? simply for having given away a Socialistic pamphlet. We find women in large numbers undressed in the presence of, or even by, the gendarmes themselves, and searched by them, to the accompaniment of coarse jokes. We are told how prisoners were tortured, how nervous prisoners were disturbed in their sleep, to entice them in their state of excitement to make confessions. Condemned prisoners were treated with the same refined cruelty.

There is a large prison at Novobfelgorod, near Kharkoff, whence the prisoners addressed in 1878—that is, before the attempts on the emperor's life—an appeal to Russian society, from which we will quote a few facts. In a dark cell, whose window is partly smeared over with dark paint, lay Plotnikoff, on boards only thinly covered with felt, without covering or pillow, terribly weakened by years of solitary confinement. One day he rose from his boards and began reciting the words of a favourite poet. Suddenly his gaoler rushed in. "How dare you speak loud here!" he cried; "perfect silence must reign here. I shall have you put in irons." The prisoner vainly pleaded that his legal term for being in irons had expired, and that he was ill. The irons were again fastened on him.

Alexandroff, another prisoner, heard some peasants singing in the distance; their song found an echo in his heart, and he sang the melody. He had ceased for some time when the guard entered his cell. "Who has allowed you to sing?" he said; "I will give you a reminder," and with his fist struck him in the face. Even common criminals are better treated. They are allowed to sit together, two or three in one cell. Serakoff was put into the career for not saluting a gaoler standing a little way off. The career is a cage totally dark, and so small, that a prisoner has to remain in it in a stooping position. It is behind the privy, whence the soil is but seldom removed.

The prisoners in the fortress Petropaulovski are no better off. Their cells are dark, cold, and damp; the windows being darkened with paint, lights have to be burnt nearly all day. Their food consists of watery soup and porridge for dinner, and a piece of bread morning and evening. The stoves are heated only once every three days, hence the walls are wet, and the floors literally full of puddles. The prisoners are allowed to take exercise every other day, but for a quarter of an hour only. They have no other distraction. When Subkoffski once made cubes of bread to study stereometry, they were taken away from him. "Prisoners are not allowed amusements," he was told. No wonder that disease,insanity, attempts at suicide, and deaths are of daily occurrence.

Hunger-mutinies were another consequence of this treatment. A very serious one occurred at Odessa in December 1882. It arose in this way. A prisoner asked for invalid's food, but the prison doctor replied, "You are a workman; invalid's food costs seventy kopecks; you will do without it." Another prisoner, a student, asked for some medicine for a diseased bone in his hand. The same doctor replied, "Suck your hand, you have plenty of time." When this prisoner shortly after wanted to consult another surgeon, the prison doctor replied, "You want no doctor, but a hangman." The final circumstance which brought about the mutiny was the order of the gaoler to confine a prisoner who was consumptive, and had asked for a hammock, in the career. Then the prisoners sent for the head of the police, but he only abused them. Then the hunger-mutiny broke out. The prisoners refused to take their food, but the governor of the prison ordered those who could not be persuaded to eat to be kept alive by means of injections.

The horrors of transportation to Siberia have often been described. We need not repeat the fearful tale. But we may state that these horrors are intensified for political prisoners, whilst common criminals are allowed to soften them if they have means. Thus Yokhankeff, the well-known forger, who was tried at St. Petersburg in 18/9 for embezzling thousands, instead of having to make his way partly on foot and partly by rail, was allowed to travel with every comfort, accompanied by a female, and to put up at the best hotels en route.

The Russian Government, even under Alexander II., became ashamed, it seems, of the many trials, and resorted, to avoid this public scandal, to removing suspected persons by what is called the administrative process, an extra-judicial procedure under which hundreds of persons were dragged away from their homes and families without trial of any kind, no one knowing what became of them. We may, however, surmise that many were sent to Siberia, since in 1880 further prison accommodation had to be constructed in Eastern Siberia in consequence of the great influx of political prisoners.

What I have stated as to the treatment of prisoners is but what is based on authentic documents. Had I quoted from the "underground" press, I should be accused of exaggeration; but taking the above statements only, does such conduct become a civilised government?

645. Nihilist Emigrants.—It is difficult to estimate their number. Many of them conceal themselves to escape the Russian spies scattered all over the Continent, and not to involve the countries affording them an asylum in diplomatic difficulties. There may be about one hundred exiles in Switzerland; there are said to be about seventy in Paris, and perhaps fifty in London; but these numbers can only be approximate, and from the nature of circumstances, must always be changing. Some of these fugitives date from the earliest stages of the revolutionary movement before 1863, as, for instance, M. Elpidin, the bookseller, at Geneva. Others, like Lavroff, were involved in the conspiracies of 1866 and 1869. Others belong to the Socialistic propaganda, like Prince Krapotkine. Others, again, were members of the "Land and Liberty "or "Black Division" parties. After 1878 there was a large addition to the emigration.

But few of these exiles have been able to save any portion of their property. Before engaging in the movement some sold their estates, others leased them to their relations, and allowed them to be burdened with debts, so that in the end but little remains to be confiscated by the Government. Most, even those who receive assistance from home, are compelled to rely on their own exertions. Some give lessons in music, in Russian, in science; others write for Russian and foreign newspapers. Others, again (about twenty), are employed in the three Russian printing-offices at Geneva; and perhaps the same number practise the trades of locksmiths, carpenters, and shoemakers, which they once learned for the purposes of the propaganda. Many, unable to work, their mental and physical powers having been broken by long incarceration, are supported by the contributions of the party.

To suppose, as it often has been supposed, that the Nihilistic movement in Russia is directed by these emigrants, is a mistake. The telegraph cannot be employed by them, and correspondence is too slow and unsafe. Whatever has to be done in Russia, must be decided on and carried out by the members residing there. The exile ceases to take anyactive part in the revolution at home, though he may indirectly influence it by his literary efforts, as, for instance, Krapotkine and Stepniak have done to a large extent. The death of this latter, so well known by his brilliant and authoritative work, La Russia Sotterranea, caused great sorrow to all true lovers of Russia. He was accidentally killed on the 23rd December 1895, when crossing the railway near Chiswick, by being caught by the engine of a train, knocked down, and fearfully mutilated.

Stepniak's real name was Serge Michaelovitch Kravchinsky. After his death the St. Petersburg press asserted that it was he who assassinated Adjutant-General Mesentsoff (616), the chief of the political police, by stabbing him with a dagger. But this was never proved.

According to Dalziel, six officers of the garrison of Kieff, including a colonel, were arrested in March 1896 for participation in a Nihilist plot; whence it would appear that Nihilism is not dead yet, nor is it likely to die until it has attained its aim; and the present emperor does not seem likely to voluntarily satisfy it.

646. Nihilistic Literature.—The bibliography of Nihilism is already an extensive one. Among the most important newspapers and periodicals we have:

  1. The Bell (Kolokol), edited by Herzen and Bakunin, from 1st July 1857 to 1869. London and Geneva. After Herzen's death it was revived for a short time in 1870.
  2. Flying Sheets. Heidelberg, 1862. 78 pp. 8vo.
  3. Free Word. Berlin, 1862. 590 pp. 8vo.
  4. Liberty. 1863. Two numbers, the organ of the party "Land and Liberty."
  5. The Underground Word, by M. Elpidin. Geneva, 1866. Two pamphlets.
  6. Cause of the People, by Bakunin and Elpidin. 1868 and 1869. Nine pamphlets.
  7. Onwards, a review in nine volumes. 1873-77. Two thousand copies.
  8. Onwards, a fortnightly publication of three thousand copies in large 4to. 1875 and 1876. Published in London.
  9. The Tocsin. Monthly. 1875 to 1881.
  10. General Cause. Monthly. Geneva.
  11. The, Commune, nine numbers of which appeared at Geneva in 1878.
  12. Land and Liberty. 1878 and 1879.
  13. Will of the People, the organ of the Terroristic Executive Committee. 1879.
  14. Black Division. 1880-81.
  15. Free Word.

Of books we have:—

  1. The Filled and the Hungry, published by the Anarchists at Geneva.
  2. The Terroristic Struggle, N. Morosoff. London, 1880.
  3. Terrorism and Routine, W. Tarnoffski. London, 1880.
  4. Biographies of Perofskaia, Scheljabow, and others. Geneva, 1882.
  5. Le Nihilisme en Russie, S. Podolinski. Paris, 1879.
  6. La Russia Sotterranea, by Stepuiak. Milan, 1882. An English translation appeared in London, 1883.
  7. Buried Alive; Report concerning the Prisoners in the Peter and Paul Citadel at St. Petersburg. 1878.
  8. Almanack of the Will of the People. Geneva, 1883.

I have given the more important periodical publications and books only; besides these, there are published by Nihilists numerous flying sheets, proclamations, addresses, reports of trials, etc.

647. Trials of Nihilists.—The following list is taken from the "Almanack of the Will of the People":—

[Trials of Nihilists] from Secret Societies of All Ages: Vol 2 by Charles Heckethorn
[Trials of Nihilists] from Secret Societies of All Ages: Vol 2 by Charles Heckethorn

The above sentences are those pronounced by the tribunals; but many of the accused were, in reality, punished more severely than is apparent. Those who were acquitted were, as a rule, placed under police supervision, imprisoned, or banished to no one could tell where. The table, moreover, does not show those who were never tried, but dealt with administratively, as it is mildly termed: they died in prison, or were hanged without trial. This has frequently been the case since 1883, whence it is impossible to give the numbers with the same fulness as before that date. How many victims were so quickly "removed," it will probably be impossible ever to ascertain.