Eshevskii, Stepan

Eshevskii, Stepan Vasil’evich


Born Feb. 2 (14), 1829, in Kologriv, in present-day Kostroma Oblast; died May 27 (June 8), 1865, in Moscow. Russian historian; a specialist on the history of the late Roman Empire and the early Middle Ages.

Eshevskii was a pupil of T. N. Granovskii and P. N. Kudriavtsev. He was a professor at the Universities of Kazan (1855–57) and Moscow (1858–65). In his principal work C. S. Apollinaris Sidonius: Episodes from the Literary and Political History of Fifth Century Gaul (1855), Eshevskii illuminated, profoundly for his time, the social prerequisites for the fall of the Roman Empire. This work was the beginning of his research into the history of the Roman provinces, which he continued in The Center of the Roman World and Its Provinces (1866) and Essays on Paganism and Christianity (1867). Eshevskii also occupied himself with Russian history (his work Essay on the Reign of Elizaveta Petrovna, 1857), as well as archaeology and ethnology. In his article “On the Significance of Races in History” (written in 1864), Eshevskii, influenced by the Civil War of 1861–65 in the United States, came out against reactionary theories of higher and lower races and racial discrimination. Museums of ethnology were created in Kazan (1856) and Moscow (1865) on his initiative.


Sochineniia, parts 1–3. Moscow, 1870.
Sochineniia po russkoi istorii. Moscow, 1900.


Bestuzhev-Riumin, K. N. “S. V. Eshevskii.” In his book Biografii i kharakteristiki. St. Petersburg, 1882.
Arkhangel’skii, S. I. “Istoricheskie vzgliady S. V. Eshevskogo.” In Srednie veka, issue 6. Moscow, 1955.