Fedor Nikolaevich Petrov

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Petrov, Fedor Nikolaevich


Born July 10 (22), 1876, in Moscow; died there May 28, 1973. Soviet party official and scholar. Twice Hero of Socialist Labor (1961 and 1971). Professor. Member of the CPSU from 1896. Son of a worker.

Petrov graduated from the medical faculty of the University of Kiev in 1902. He joined the revolutionary movement in 1894. On the eve of the Revolution of 1905-07, he was a responsible party organizer among the soldiers of the Kiev garrison. In 1905, Petrov was one of the leaders of an uprising of combat engineer troops in Kiev and was wounded. He was one of the creators of the revolutionary military Social Democratic organizations in Poland and Lithuania. In 1906 he was arrested in Warsaw and sentenced by a military tribunal to hard labor. He served his term in the Shlissel’burg Fortress from 1907 to 1914. Afterward, he was permanently exiled to the village of Manzurka, Ver-kholenskii District, Irkutsk Province. From March 1917 he was a deputy to the Irkutsk city duma and chairman of the Zna-menka Raion organization of the RSDLP (Bolshevik).

Petrov was a participant in the October Revolution of 1917 in Siberia and the Far East and in the struggle against the Kolchak forces from 1918 to 1920. From 1920 to 1922, Petrov served as deputy chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Far East Republic (FER), minister of public health, head of the main Military Health Directorate of the People’s Revolutionary Army of the FER, and a member of the Far East Bureau of the Central Committee of the RCP (Bolshevik). He headed the FER delegation to the Dairen conference of 1921-22.

Petrov was head of Glavnauka (the Central Scientific Administration) from 1923 to 1927. From 1929 to 1933 he was chairman of the All-Union Society for Foreign Cultural Relations. Petrov was prominent in the development of a Soviet encyclopedia. He was deputy editor in chief of the first edition of the Great Soviet Encyclopedia from 1927 to 1941 and director of the Sovetskaia Entsiklopediia State Institute from 1941 to 1949. He was a member of the chief editorial board of the three editions of the Great Soviet Encyclopedia, and from 1959 to 1973 a member of the scientific editorial council of the Sovetskaia Entsiklopediia Publishing House. He was also editor in chief and a member of the editorial boards of many encyclopedia and dictionary publications.

Petrov was a member of the editorial board of the multivolume History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and of the magazine Voprosy istorii KPSS (from 1962). He wrote scholarly works and reminiscences on the history of the party and on V. I. Lenin and several articles on the history of science and the development of museums and culture in the USSR. He was a delegate to the Twenty-second through Twenty-fourth Congresses of the CPSU. He was awarded four Orders of Lenin, the Order of the Red Banner of Labor, and various medals.


65 let v riadakh Leninskoi partii: Vospominaniia. Moscow, 1962.
Geroicheskie gody bor’by i pobed. Moscow, 1968.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.