Hans Pöögelmann

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Pöögelmann, Hans


(in Russian, Khans Gustavovich Pegel’man; pen name H. Rooskaja). Born Dec. 18 (30), 1875; died Dec. 3, 1941. Participant in the Russian revolutionary movement, publicist, and poet. Member of the Communist Party from 1905.

The son of a peasant, Pöögelmann was born in Aidu Volost, now the village soviet of Paistu, Viljandi Raion, Estonian SSR. He worked as a schoolteacher, a postal employee, and, beginning in 1899, a journalist. From 1903 to 1905 he studied at a commercial institute in Leipzig. Beginning in 1905 he conducted party work in Revel (Tallinn), and in 1907 he directed a conference of the Estonian organizations of the RSDLP in Terioki, Finland. In 1909, Pöögelmann was arrested and exiled to Siberia. In 1911 he escaped and emigrated to the USA, where he edited the Estonian Social Democratic newspaper Uus ilm (New World). In 1917 in Revel he was a member of the editorial staff of the Bolshevik newspaper Kiir (The Ray), editor of the newspapers Tööline (The Worker) and Maatamees (The Landless), and a member of the Executive Committee of the Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies of Estonia. In 1918 and 1919, Pöögelmann directed the Estonian Section of the People’s Commissariat of Nationalities in Moscow, served as a member of the Central Bureau of the Central Committee (CC) of the RCP(B) for Occupied Areas, and was a member of the government of the Estonian Workers’ Commune.

In 1919, Pöögelmann began working as a journalist and teacher in the RSFSR. In 1928 he became a professor at the J. Marchlewski Communist University for National Minorities of the West, and in 1929 a professor at the A. I. Herzen Leningrad Pedagogical Institute. Pöögelmann was a poet of the revolution, who translated the “Internationale” and the “Marseillaise” into Estonian. In his collection of satirical verses Rough Drafts, he caustically ridiculed the bourgeois order. The theme of revolutionary struggle permeates the collection of verses Spring Winds (1926) and the collection of narrative poems To Those Who Fell in the Struggle for Their Brothers (1936). In 1933 he published the collection of critiques From the Literary Front.

A member of the CC of the Communist Party of Estonia from 1920, Pöögelmann was a delegate to the First through Sixth Congresses of the Comintern and a member of the Executive Committee of the Comintern.


Luuletused. Tallinn, 1957.


[Maiak, R.] “Kh. Pegel’man (1875–1935).” In Znamenostsy revoliutsii. Collection 1. Tallinn, 1964.
Plotnik, E. H. Pöö gelmann [vols.] 1—. Elu ja tegevus: 1875–1919. Tallinn, 1965.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.