Brandenburgskii, Iakov

Brandenburgskii, Iakov Natanovich


Born Oct. 31 (Nov. 12), 1881, in Balta, Podol’sk Province; died Sept. 19, 1951, in Moscow. Soviet statesman and party figure. Member of the Communist Party from 1903.

Brandenburgskii was born into the family of a minor official. In 1902, he was expelled from the University of Novorossiia (Odessa) for participating in the student movement. From 1904 to 1905 he was a member of the Ekaterinoslav, Riga, and Tver’ Party committees. He was a delegate to the Fourth (Unity) Congress of the RSDLP (1906), and later he was a member of the St. Petersburg Party committee. He was subjected to repression by the tsarist government. Brandenburgskii emigrated in 1908 and graduated from the faculty of law at the Sorbonne in Paris (1911).

Brandenburgskii returned to Russia in 1917. During the October Revolution he worked in the Petrograd food committee and, beginning in June 1918, in the People’s Commissariat of Food. He was a member of the board of the Central Union of Consumers’ Societies of the USSR from 1920 to 1921. Between 1922 and 1929 he was a member of the collegium of the People’s Commissariat of Justice and the Legislative Commission of the Council of People’s Commissars of the USSR. At the same time, from 1925 to 1929 he was dean of the department of law at Moscow State University; he participated in drawing up several bills. From 1929 to 1931 he was a member of the Lower Volga Regional Committee of the ACP (Bolshevik) and vice-chairman of the regional executive committee. Beginning in 1931 he was a member of the collegium of the USSR People’s Commissariat of Labor. From 1934 to 1938 he was a member of the Supreme Court of the USSR. Beginning in 1939 he was the recipient of a special pension. Brandenburgskii was the author of scholarly works on legal subjects.