N. Krupskaya


To Lenin’s Mother

Written: 14 June, 1898. Letter sent from Shushenskoye to Podesk
Published: 1929 in the journalProletarshaya Revoyufsiya No. 4 Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1977, Moscow, Volume 37, pages 559-560.
Translated/Edited: George H. Hanna and Robert Daglish.
Transcription/Markup: D. Walters
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive 2008. You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as the source/editing/transcription/markup information noted above.

Dear Maria Alexandrovna,

Volodya is sitting here engaged in an earnest conversation with a miller about some houses and cows and things, so I am taking the opportunity of writing you a few lines. I do not know where to begin, one day is the same as another and there is nothing happening outside the family. I seem to have been living an age in Shusha and have become completely acclimatised. Shusha is a very nice place in summer. We go walking every evening. Mother does not go very far, but we sometimes set off for more distant places. In the evenings ther is no humidity in the air and it’s just right for walking. There are a lot of mosquitoes and we have made nets for ourselves but they seem to go out of their way to bite Volodyn, although in general they are quite bearable. The famous “gun dog” accompanies us on our walks and spends all its time chasing birds, which always makes Volodya indignant. At this time of the year Volodya does not go shooting (he is not really such an enthusiastic sportsman), it . is nesting time or something, and even his waders have been put away in the cellar. Instead of shooting Volodya tried his hand at fishing. A few times he crossed the Yenisei to fish for burbot at night but the last time he came back without so much as a tiddier, and since then there has been no more talk of burbot. Across the Yenisel it is just marvellous. We once went across there and had heaps of adventures of all kinds and everything was tine. It is hot nowadays. We have to walk quite a long way to bathe. A plan for morning swimming has been elaborated for which we are to get up at 6 am, I do not know how long this will last, but today we went swimming. Altogether our life here follows the “standard” summer—cottage routine, only we have nothing for the house.

They feed us well here, we have all the milk we like and we are all flourishing. I have not yet got used to Volodya’s healthy appearance, in St. Petersburg I was accustomed to seeing him in a permanently out—of—sorts condition. Zinochka even gasped when she saw him in Minusinsk. And you should see what she looks like—thank God. With Lirochka it’s a different story. We were sent a photograph from St. Petersburg; it was taken the day after she was released and she looks simply terrible. Can she have changed so much? Sometimes I think they might send her to Shusha. That would be fine. In Shusha she might recover a little.

Well, I have given you a whole heap of gossip. In her last letter Manyasha asked about photographs. On the way here I wrote to St. Petersburg and asked them to send you my photograph (home production) but they must have forgotten. As regards photographs that are not home–made, I shall write to St. Petersburg.and ask them to go to the photographer’s and order a few more pictures of me, and that they certainly will not refuse to do. I should very much like you and Manya to come to visit us here. There is still time for it. Give DI. my regards. Volodya has finished talking to the miller and has already written two letters and I still cannot wind up my gossip.

Good–bye for now and many kisses. Mother sends regards to all. It is useless sending regards through Volodya, he thinks they should be taken for granted. Nevertheless I send many kisses to Maaya and Anyuta and regards to M.T.