Kingissepp, Viktor

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Kingissepp, Viktor Eduardovich


Born Mar. 12 (24), 1888, in Kaarma-Suire, Saaremaa Island; died May 4,1922, in Tallinn. Figure in the revolutionary movement in Russia and Estonia. Member of the Communist Party from 1906.

Kingissepp graduated from the University of St. Petersburg in 1917. Upon joining the revolutionary movement in 1905, he engaged in party work in St. Petersburg and Tallinn from 1907 to 1914. He worked for the newspaper kiir (The Ray) in 1913–14 and maintained contact with the Russian Bureau of the Central Committee of the RSDLP, with the Bolshevik faction in the Fourth State Duma, and with Pravda. He was harassed by the authorities. After the February Revolution of 1917 he returned to Petrograd; he went to Tallinn in early June and was one of the leaders of the Bolshevik organization in Estonia. Vice-chairman of the Military Revolutionary Committee of Estland Krai from Oct. 22 (Nov. 4), 1917, he helped organize the Red Guards and was a member of the Executive Committee of the Soviets of Estland Krai from Oct. 26 (Nov. 8), 1917. From March 1918, Kingissepp worked in Moscow for the Supreme Revolutionary Tribunal and the All-Russian Extraordinary Commission (All-Russian Cheka); he was a member of the Special Investigation Commission in the case concerning the rebellion of the Left Socialist Revolutionaries and an investigator in connection with the prosecution of the Lockhart spy organization. In March 1918, at the Fourth All-Russian Congress of Soviets, he was elected a member of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee.

Kingissepp directed the Communist Party of Estonia from November 1918. He was elected a member of the Central Committee and of the Politburo of the Central Committee at the First (1920) and Second (1921) Congresses of the Communist Party of Estonia. He set up underground printing presses and published the newspaper Kommunist. Kingissepp was arrested by the police of the Estonian bourgeois government on May 3, 1922, sentenced to death by a court-martial, and shot in the early hours of May 4.


Bor’ba protiv inostrannykh imperialistov i ikh posobnikov. Tallinn, 1956. (Collection of articles and leaflets.)
K voprosam kul’tury: Sb. izbr. st. (1913–1914 gg.). Tallinn, 1956.


Päss, A. “V. Kingisepp.” In Znamenostsy revoliutsii, vol. 1. Tallinn, 1964.
Rudnev, N. V. E. Kingisepp. Leningrad, 1962. (With bibliography.)
Voevodin, E. Tri chasa pered kazn’iu. Moscow, 1970.
Elukutse—riigikukutaja. Tallinn, 1963.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.