Shaniavskii University

Shaniavskii University


(full name, A. L. Shaniavskii Moscow City People’s University), a university that existed in Moscow from 1908 to 1918. The initiative and funds for founding the university were provided by General A. L. Shaniavskii (1837–1905), a liberal figure in the field of public education. Under pressure from democratic elements of society, the Duma passed a bill in 1908 approving the establishment of the new university. Regular instruction began in the same year. Students of both sexes over the age of 16 were admitted without regard to nationality, religion, or political views. Since admission requirements did not include a secondary school diploma, the student body was quite diverse.

Shaniavskii University had two divisions—general and scholarly. The former provided a general secondary education; the latter provided a higher education in the natural, social, and philosophical sciences. Programs of study in the fields of preschool education, library science, and education outside the classroom became very well known. Many prominent scholars who had left government educational institutions because of their progressive views joined the staff of the university; among them were P. N. Lebedev, Iu. V. Got’e, A. N. Reformatskii, and P. P. Blonskii. In 1912 more than 3,600 students were enrolled in the university.

Shaniavskii University was closed in late 1918 as a result of a reorganization of the system of public education.


Moskovskii gorodskoi narodnyi universitet im. A. L. Shaniavskogo: Istoricheskii ocherk. Moscow, 1914.
Otchet Moskovskogo gorodskogo narodnogo universiteta im. A. L. Shaniavskogo, 1908–1916. Moscow [1909–16].