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Born Feb. 25, 1844, in Óbuda; died Mar. 29, 1896, in Paris. Figure in the Hungarian and international working-class movements.
Frankel moved to France in late 1867 and became one of the leaders of the Paris Federation of the First International. In 1869 in London he became acquainted with K. Marx, whose influence was responsible for Frankel’s break with petit bourgeois socialism. An active participant in the popular uprising in Paris on Mar. 18, 1871, Frankel subsequently became one of the leaders of the Paris Commune, to which he was elected from the 13th arrondissement of Paris on Mar. 26, 1871. He became a member of the commune’s Commission on Labor, Industry, and Exchange on March 29 and a member of the Financial Commission on April 5; on April 20 he became a member of the Executive Commission and a delegate (leader) of the Commission on Labor, Industry, and Exchange. Frankel helped develop the commune’s social and economic measures, in particular the decrees on labor. Wounded near the barricades, he fled to Switzerland in May 1871 and was sentenced to death in absentia by a court martial of the Versaillais.
In August 1871, Frankel settled in London and joined the General Council of the International Brotherhood of Workers of the First International as corresponding secretary from Austria-Hungary. Closely associated with Marx and F. Engels, he spoke against the Bakuninists. He was arrested in Vienna in 1876 and extradited to Hungary. After his release, he helped found the Universal Workers’ Party in Hungary in 1880. After 1889 he lived in Paris. Frankel contributed to the French and German socialist press and took part in the first three congresses of the Second International. He was buried in the Père-Lachaise cemetery in Paris; in March 1968 his remains were moved to Budapest.
REFERENCESAngran, P. “Neizvestnye stranitsy biografii kommunara Leo Frankelia.” Voprosy istorii, 1956, no. 3.
Aranyossi, M. Frankel Leó. Budapest, 1952.