Pavel Bermont-Avalov

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Bermont-Avalov, Pavel Rafalovich


Born Mar. 4, 1877; died after 1925. An adventurer; a leader of the counterrevolution in the Baltics in 1918–19; major general (1918).

Bermont-Avalov was descended from Ussuri cossacks. He fought in World War I. In 1919 he became chief of the so-called Special Russian Corps (from September 1919 called the Western Volunteer Army), which was formed in Germany from Russian prisoners of war and German volunteers. This corps operated after June 1919 in Latvia jointly with the German troops of R. von derGoltz against Soviet troops. In September 1919, after von der Goltz’s corps was formally disbanded, German troops were included in Bermont-Avalov’s corps. Bermont-Avalov refused to take Iudenich’s side, came in conflict with the bourgeois governments of Latvia and Estonia, and occupied Riga in October. He tried to form the Western Central Government, with a German orientation, but he was defeated by the Latvian and Estonian troops, which were aided by the navy of the Triple Entente. He emigrated to Germany.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.