Judicial-Administrative Reform of 1889

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Judicial-Administrative Reform of 1889


a reorganization of local government, introduced in 37 provinces in European Russia on the basis of the law on zemskie nachal’niki (land captains) of July 12, 1889.

The Judicial-Administrative Reform of 1889 brought the coun-terreform to completion in the area of judicial administration. It nullified an important principle of the Judicial Reform of 1864-separation of the lower courts from the administration. Administrative bodies (district [uezd] bureaus for peasant affairs) and judicial bodies (elected justices of the peace and conferences of justices of the peace) were replaced by the institution of the zemskie uchastkovye nachal’niki (land captains), who performed judicial and administrative functions with regard to the peasants. Justice-of-the-peace courts were preserved in St. Petersburg, Moscow, Odessa, Nizhny Novgorod, Kharkov, Kazan, Saratov, Kishinev, and Astrakhan.

Cases that under the judicial statutes of 1864 had been considered by justices of the peace were given over to the competence of the zemskie nachal’niki city judges, and district members of city courts. The office of city judge, appointed by the minister of justice, was instituted in province and district cities; district members of the regional court (okruzhnyi sud) were also appointed by the minister of justice, one to each district. The appellate level for cases dealt with by the zemskie nachal’niki and city judges was the judicial bureau of the district conference, which was headed by the district marshal of the nobility; the highest level of appeal was the province bureau, headed by the governor.


Vilenskii, B. V. Sudebnaia reforma i kontrreforma v Rossii. Saratov, 1969.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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