Ustrialov, Nikolai

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Ustrialov, Nikolai Gerasimovich


Born May 4 (16), 1805, in Maloarkhangel’sk District, Orel Province; died June 8 (20), 1870, in St. Petersburg. Russian historian. Member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1837).

The son of a raznochinets (intellectual of no definite class), Ustrialov graduated from St. Petersburg University; he was a professor of Russian history at the university from 1834 to 1870. He published several volumes of source material comprising memoirs from the 16th and 17th centuries: Tales Told By Contemporaries About the False Dmitrii (vols. 1–5, 1831–34) and Tales of Prince Kurbskii (vols. 1–2, 1833).

In the early 1830’s, Ustrialov became a follower of S. S. Uvarov and a champion of the official nationality theory. In 1836 he wrote Russian History, which was supplemented in 1842 by A Historical Review of the Reign of His Majesty Emperor Nicholas I. These loyalist works were adopted as official textbooks. In 1842, having been granted access to secret documents, he began his principal work, The History of the Reign of Peter the Great. This work, of which only Volumes 1–4 and 6 of the projected ten volumes were published (1858–59 and 1863), made public a number of valuable sources.


Ikonnikov, V. S. “N. S. Artsybyshev i N. G. Ustrialov.” Russkii arkhiv, 1886, no. 12.
Ocherki istorii istoricheskoi nauki v SSSR, vol. 1. Moscow, 1955.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.