Aveling, Edward

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Aveling, Edward


Born Nov. 29, 1851, in Stoke Newington; died Aug. 2, 1898, in London. British socialist.

Aveling studied the natural sciences and became known as a popularizer of C. Darwin’s theories and of atheism. In the early 1880’s he became acquainted with Marxism, and in 1883–84 he edited the socialist journal Progress. Together with his wife Eleanor Marx, K. Marx’s daughter, Aveling played a prominent role in the British and international labor movement and in the propagation of Marxist doctrine. He was active in the Democratic Federation (renamed the Social Democratic Federation in August 1884); he condemned the opportunistic tendencies of the federation’s leader, H. Hyndman, and together with a group of left-wingers he left its ranks.

Aveling was one of the founders of the Socialist League (December 1884). With the support of F. Engels, he sought to convert the league into the nucleus of the mass political party of the proletariat. The anarchists’ predominance in the league in the late 1880’s caused Aveling and his followers to break with it. Having joined the new trade union movement, Aveling helped organize and was active in the Second International. He was a co-translator into English of the first volume of Marx’ Das Kapital and Engels’ Development of Socialism From Utopia to Science [published in English as Socialism, Utopian and Scientific].

Aveling was also known as a playwright and literary scholar. The last years of his life were clouded by ill health.


Marx, K., and F. Engels, Soch., 2nd ed., vols. 36–39. (See Index of names.)
Tupoleva, L. F. Sotsialisticheskoe dvizhenie v Anglii v 80-e gody XIX v. Moscow, 1973.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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