Russian Bureau of the Central Committee of the Russian Social

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Russian Bureau of the Central Committee of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party


(RSDLP), an all-party body made up of members of the Central Committee and functioning from 1903 to 1917. The bureau guided the practical work of local party organizations in Russia, set up underground presses, and published illegal literature. It was founded in Kiev after the Second Congress of the RSDLP in 1903. In 1904 it was located in Moscow and from 1905 in St. Petersburg.

Among the first members of the Russian Bureau were G. M. Krzhizhanovskii and V. A. Noskov, who co-opted F. V. Gusarov, R. S. Zemliachka, L. B. Krasin, and M. M. Essen. Later members included A. A. Bogdanov, F. I. Goloshchekin, I. F. Dubrovinskii, K. S. Eremeev, P. A. Zalutskii, M. I. Kalinin, V. M. Molotov, M. K. Muranov, V. P. Nogin, G. K. Ordzhonikidze, G. I. Petrovskii, D. S. Postolovskii, Ia. M. Sverdlov, S. S. Spandarian, J. V. Stalin, and E. D. Stasova.

The Russian Bureau comprised organizational, technical, financial-commissary, and military subgroups and a coordinating executive commission. Lenin had headed the foreign section of the Central Committee of the RSDLP; after his arrival in Russia in November 1905 the functions of the Russian Bureau came under the jurisdiction of the Central Committee of the RSDLP. In the period of reaction (1907–10), the bureau resumed its work, but it soon ceased operation because of the arrest of many of its members and the sabotage carried out by members who were Menshevik-Liquidators.

The Central Committee elected at the Sixth (Prague) All-Russian Conference of the RSDLP in 1912 reestablished the Russian Bureau, whose activities were directed from abroad by Lenin. With the beginning of World War I, the members of the bureau were arrested and the bureau temporarily ceased to exist; it was restored in 1915. The bureau achieved substantial results in rallying the Bolsheviks around Lenin’s slogans for fighting against the imperialist war. Members of the St. Petersburg committee of the RSDLP took an active part in the work of the bureau. During the February Revolution of 1917, the Russian Bureau, together with the Petrograd Bolsheviks, led the revolutionary actions of the workers. On Feb. 27 (Mar. 12), 1917, the bureau issued the manifesto of the Central Committee To All Citizens of Russia, announcing the overthrow of autocracy and the victory of the bourgeois-democratic revolution. In March 1917 the Russian Bureau led the struggle for the destruction of the old order and the consolidation of the gains of the revolution. By decision of the bureau, publication of the newspaper Pravda resumed on Mar. 5 (18), 1917. The Russian Bureau ceased to exist in April 1917 with the election by the Seventh (April) All-Russian Conference of the RSDLP(B) of a new Central Committee able to function legally inside Russia.


Lenin, V. I. Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed. (See Index volume, part 1, p. 271.)
Moskalev, M. Biuro Tsentral’nogo Komiteta RSDRP v Rossii (avg. 1903-mart 1917). Moscow, 1964.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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