V. I.   Lenin



Published: First published in 1929 in the journal Proletarskaya Revolyutsiya No. 11. Sent to Moscow. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1977, Moscow, Volume 37, page 72b.
Translated: The Late George H. Hanna
Transcription\Markup: D. Moros
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive.   You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work, as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.README

Salzburg, May 14 (2), 1895

I am making use of a two-hour stop at a small Austrian town (not far,[1] now, from my destination) to fulfil my promise to write on the way.[3]

This is my second day of travel abroad and I am practising the language; I have discovered that I am weak at this and have the greatest difficulty in understanding the Germans—or rather, I don’t understand them at all.[2] I ask the guard on the train a question, he answers and I don’t understand him. He repeats the answer more loudly. I still don’t understand, and so he gets angry and goes away. In spite of this disgraceful fiasco I am not discouraged and continue distorting the German language with some zeal.

Regards to all,
V. Ulyanov

I shall probably not be able to write another letter very soon.


[1] A little over 24 hours.—Lenin

[2] Their pronunciation is so strange and they speak so quickly that I do not understand even the simplest sounds—Lenin

[3] On April 25 (May 7), 1895 Lenin went abroad on the instructions of St. Petersburg Marxists to establish connections with the Emancipation of Labour group and familiarise himself with the West-   European working-class movement. Lenin visited Switzerland, France and Germany and returned to Russia in the autumn of 1895.

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