Mikhail Silvin

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Sil’vin, Mikhail Aleksandrovich


Born Nov. 20 (Dec. 2), 1874, in Nizhny Novgorod, now Gorky; died May 28, 1955, in Leningrad. Russian revolutionary.

The son of a civil servant, Sil’vin was active in the Social Democratic movement from 1891. In 1893 he enrolled in the faculty of law at the University of St. Petersburg and joined a Social Democratic circle. He met V. I. Lenin in September 1893. He helped organize the St. Petersburg League of Struggle for the Emancipation of the Working Class and was a member of its Central Group. In 1896 he was arrested, and in 1898 exiled to Eastern Siberia. In August 1899 he signed Lenin’s “Protest by Russian Social Democrats” against the “Credo” of the “economists.” Sil’vin was an Iskra agent from 1901. In 1902 he was arrested, and in 1904 exiled to Irkutsk Province. In August 1904 he fled abroad and worked in the Central Committee of the RSDLP; he was conciliatory toward the Mensheviks. After his return to Russia in 1905, Sil’vin contributed to various Bolshevik newspapers. In 1908 he withdrew from political activity.

After the October Revolution of 1917, Sil’vin worked in various Soviet institutions. From 1931 he was a teacher, and from 1932 the recipient of a personal pension. He wrote several articles on the St. Petersburg League of Struggle and a book, Lenin in the Period of the Birth of the Party (1958).


Lenin, V. I. Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed. (See Spravochnyi torn, part 2, p. 473.)
Kutsentov, D. G. Deiateli Peterburgskogo “Soiuza bor’by za osvobozhdenie rabochego klassa.” Moscow, 1962.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.