Butyrka Prison

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Butyrka Prison


a prison that served as a central deportation point in prerevolutionary Russia; it was also used for the detention of persons under investigation or sentenced on political or criminal charges. The first information on the Butyrka Prison dates from the 17th century.

The prison was built in Moscow near the Butyrka Gate in 1879, at the site of the castle erected by the architect M. F. Kazakov under Catherine II. Insurgent streltsy (semi-professional musketeers) were incarcerated in the towers of the castle under Peter I, and E. I. Pugachev was held there under Catherine II. Hundreds of participants of the Polish Uprising of 1863 passed through the old castle. In 1883 members of the People’s Will were detained in the towers of the Butyrka Prison, as were in 1886 participants in the Morozov Strike of 1885. In 1904 and 1905, N. E. Bauman, V. F. Lengnik, E. D. Stasova, and other prominent Bolsheviks were detained in the Butyrka Prison, and in 1908 and 1909, V. V. Mayakovsky served a term there for spreading revolutionary propaganda among the workers. Between 1910 and 1917, F. E. Dzerzhinskii, Em. Iaroslavskii, and other Bolsheviks were held there.

The regime of the Butyrka Prison was cruel. The prison administration responded to the prisoners’ protests with violence. During the February Revolution of 1917 the workers of Moscow freed the political prisoners. After October 1917 the Butyrka Prison was used for the detention of persons under investigation.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Prison was no picnic, mostly characterised by appallingly primitive conditions though it occasionally allowed socialist prisoners to enjoy themselves, for instance, in organising a theatrical production (to which Dan was not admitted in the Peter and Paul fortress, though he did later attend a similar event in the Butyrki prison).
His untimely death there (he was executed in the Butyrki prison in 1938 at age thirty-seven) was a not unexpected coda to his chaotic life.
They couldn't break Mother [when they questioned her] in Butyrki Prison ...
They took me back to much earlier events: to the inner prison at the Lubyanka and to Butyrki, to Stavropol prison, the Georgievsk transit prison, and to numerous transit prisons and camps in Ustvymlag and Usolag.
It is remarkable testament to the new spirit of openness that the eventual programme included the massive and much troubled remand prisons - Butyrki in Moscow and Kresty in St Petersburg - as well as the notorious Byely Lebed in Solikamsk, in spite of a hostage-taking incident there just two days before the visit, in which the procurator and one of the hostage-takers were killed.
In some establishments, mostly those where it had been possible to negotiate repeated visits over several days (Butyrki, Kresty, Vladimir, Reinforced Regime Colony No.
Butyrki is one of two main remand prisons in Moscow which come under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of the Interior (the other is Mariners' Rest which now accommodates the plotters of the August 1991 putsch).
Butyrki contains some 434 cells of which 101 are large rooms, perhaps (which is to say measured by eye not a ruler) 6 metres by 12 metres.
Okulicki was murdered in Moscow's Butyrki prison in 1946, while Mazurkiewicz spent seven years in prison and was released in 1956.