V. I.   Lenin



Published: First published in 1929 in the journal Proletarskaya Revolyutsiya No. 8-9. Sent from Shushenskoye to Podolsk. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1977, Moscow, Volume 37, pages 259-261.
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.
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May 1, 1899

On Tuesday, Mother dearest, I received Anyuta’s letter of April 12 and on Friday I received my book[1] (3 copies) and the manuscript of the translation. I am writing to Anyuta separately.

This year spring has come particularly early. The trees are breaking into leaf and the water in the river is rising rapidly. The steamer could no doubt get as far as Minusinsk already, but nobody can say definitely whether the high water will last and for how long.

Mikhail Alexandrovich (Silvin) wrote me that his fiancée wants to visit him at the end of May (not earlier than the 23rd). Her name is Papperek (Olga Alexandrovna), address, Yegoryevsk in Ryazan Gubernia (she teaches at a secondary school there). If you decide to come, perhaps you could set out together. In any case it will provide a convenient opportunity to send things. Mikhail Alexandrovich has asked her to call at Podolsk on the way, but you must, of course, get in touch with her because there may be circumstances that prevent her from doing so. Yermakovskoye (where M.A. lives) is 40 versts from here, and the road there from Minusinsk is through Shushenskoye.

V. U.

Many kisses and regards to all.

How are you fixed up now? How are you feeling? When are you expecting Manyasha?

May 1, 1899


I have received your letter of April 12, my book and the Webb translation (three registered packages).

I am very pleased with the appearance of the book. The publication is excellent thanks to the great trouble you took with the proofs. It goes without saying that you did well to raise the price. It is quite enough that there will be a 25 per cent discount for students. Have you sent the book to all our acquaintances? I think you should take a further fifteen or so copies as the author’s reserve; we shall have to exchange them for various symposia, etc. I have already written to you about the Studies and asked you to obtain a few more copies (send me two copies, but there is no hurry). I am very pleased with the title of the book; the écrivain’s correction proved worth while. If royalties arrive do not send them yet. (I am writing to Mother about a good opportunity to send things here that will soon occur.)

I am willing to take the job of editing the Webb translation. I shall edit it in conformity with my own translation of the first volume. Since I have been given the job of editing there is nothing else to wait for, and the first volume should be sent to the press immediately, should it not? Or will that again depend on P.B.’s “preparations”?

For the editing job the following are indispensable— (1) the English original of Volume 2 (I have only Volume 1), (2) the German translation of Volume 2 (K. Hugo, I have only Volume 1 although Volume 2 has also been published). If these books have not yet been sent, please write quickly and tell them to send them immediately. I am afraid this may also cause a delay. Is it not possible to give someone the job of getting those books from them and sending them to me?[3]

I did not very much like P.B.’s sending my reply to him on to Nauchnoye Obozreniye; is he trying to avoid polemics in Nachalo?[4] If he is, my article about Bulgakov will   obviously not be published. At last I have received Nachalo—two issues, complete. By and large I liked it very much. But Bulgakov’s article is outrageous. Kautsky he distorts outright, and then there is that attack on Zusammenbruch[5] —it is an echo of Bernstein’s “criticism” [the warehouse refused to send me Bernstein’s book; I have asked Manyasha, but I do not know whether she will bring it. Can you get it?] I am writing a second article against him.[2] Of course, polemics among one’s own people are unpleasant and I tried to tone the article down, but to keep quiet about differences is not only unpleasant, it is downright harmful— and, furthermore, one cannot keep quiet about the chief differences between “orthodoxy” and “criticism” that have come to the fore in German and Russian Marxism. Our opponents are already taking advantage of the differences anyway (Mikhailovsky in Russkoye Bogatstvo No. 4). While polemising among ourselves we can agree on general solidarity against the Narodniks. I want to do this at the end of my article.[6] One of Bulgakov’s chief faults is that he did not say exactly in what he agrees with Kautsky against the Narodniks.

All the best,
V. U.

In Nauchnoye Obozreniye No. 3 I saw a note by Maslov against my article on the heritage. It seemed quite uninteresting.

I am sending Negri. And what are these farming returns?

A copy of The Development of Capitalism in Russia should be given to Maslov. Please do that through the Nauchnoye Obozreniye office, or through P.B., or through V.A.

Please send all reviews of the book and ask V.A. to send those from the St. Petersburg newspapers.


[1] The Development of Capitalism in Russia.—Ed.

[2] See Note 164.—Ed.

[3] Lenin began editing the second volume of the Webbs’ Industrial Democracy only at the beginning of September 1899. In the course of this work he had not only to edit the translation but also to retranslate a considerable part of the text and write a number of footnotes. The work was finished on January 19, 1900.

[4] P. B. Struve handed Lenin’s article “Once More on the Theory of Realisation” over to Nauchnoye Obozreniye because of the unstable position of Nachalo following the confiscation of the April 1899 issue.

[5] There was a remark in Bulgakov’s article “K voprosy o kapitalisti-   scheskoi evolyutsii zemledeliya” rejecting the Marxist theory of Zusammenbruch (socialist revolution).

Somewhat earlier Bernstein had made a similar criticism in his Die Voraussetzungen des Sozialismus und die Aufgaben der Sozialdemokratie, 1899 (the English translation was entitled Problems of Socialism).

[6] No such remark was made at the end of the second part of “Capitalism in Agriculture”. It is possible that Lenin spoke of this in the first variant of his article; judging by Letters 98 and 99 he must have rewritten the article.

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