Encyclopedia of Marxism: Glossary of Events



June 13, 1849

On this day a mass demonstration took place in France (organized by the Montagne party) in protest against the infringement by the President and the majority in the Legislative Assembly of the constitutional orders established in the revolution of 1848. The demonstration was dispersed by the government.


June Insurrection of 1848

On June 23-26, 1848, Paris workers revolted against the French government's oppressive rule. The revolts were brutally suppressed by the French government. The insurrection was the first wide-scale conflict between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie.


June 10, 1917

Lenin is referring to the First All-Russian Congress of Soviets banning the demonstration fixed by the Bolshevik Central Committee for June 10 (23), 1917.

Early in June tension in Petrograd grew. The prolongation of the war by the Provisional Government, preparations for an offensive at the front, and food shortages, all caused resentment and indignation among the workers and soldiers. The government's order to troops to take over the Durnovo country-house and evict the workers' organisations on the Vyborgskaya Storona district from it gave rise to a strike. On June 7 (20) four factories went on strike, and next day, twenty-eight. The masses were eager to hold a street demonstration.

To ward off provocation and unnecessary loss of life, a joint meeting of the Central and Petrograd Committees, the Military Organisation, and district delegates from the workers and delegates from troop units, held on June 8 (21), carried Lenin's motion to hold a peaceful organised demonstration. The action was set for June 10 (23).

The Bolshevik Central Committee's decision to hold a demonstration brought a ready response from the masses and alarmed the government, as well as the Mensheviks and Socialist-Revolutionaries, who resolved to foil the demonstration. On the evening of June 9 (22) the First All-Russian Congress of Soviets, led by them, passed a resolution banning all street demonstrations for three days.

On a motion by Lenin, the Central Committee of the Bolshevik Party, not wishing to go against the Congress decision, resolved on the night of June 9-10 to call off the demonstration. Members of the Central and Petrograd Committees and other prominent members of the Party were sent to factories and barracks to dissuade the workers and soldiers from demonstrating. As a result of their explanatory work, the workers and soldiers agreed that it would be unwise to hold a demonstration just then. This indicated the Party's growing influence, its ability to keep in touch with the people, and the flexibility of the Bolshevik leadership. Two days later the S.R. and Menshevik leadership of the Congress of Soviets decided to hold a demonstration on June 18 (July 1)--the day when the Russian troops were to take the offensive--as proof of the people's "confidence" in the Provisional Government.

Under Lenin's personal leadership, the Central and Petrograd Committees did a great deal to ensure that the demonstration reflected the true sentiment of the people and win that important peaceful battle against the Mensheviks and S.R.s for influence among the people. Lenin took part in preparations for the demonstration by formulating watchwords, checking the preparation of streamers and banners, giving directions to correspondents, writing telegrams to be sent to local Bolshevik organisations, taking steps to guarantee that there would be an adequate number of Bolshevik speakers, putting his own name on the list of speakers, and attending the Marsovo Polye meeting.

On June 18 (July 1) the demonstration brought some 500,000 Petrograd workers and soldiers out into the streets. By far most of the demonstrators carried Bolshevik revolutionary slogans. Only small groups carried the conciliating parties' slogans expressing confidence in the Provisional Government. The demonstration revealed the heightened revolutionary spirit of the people and the vastly increased influence and prestige of the Bolshevik Party. It also revealed the complete failure of the petty-bourgeois conciliating parties backing the Provisional Government. Lenin dealt with the June demonstration in "The Eighteenth of June", "Three Crises" and other articles.