Главная: Андреевская энциклопедия
(по-англ. Petersburg; официальное название Санкт-Петербург),
на тексты Д. Андреева
(1: 39), ..., .
на тексты А. Андреевой
на сопроводительные материалы к текстам Д. Андреева
на статьи «Андреевской энциклопедии»
(по-англ. Petrograd), название Петербурга в 1914–1924, а
в «Розе Мира» – и будущее название Петербурга.
на тексты Д. Андреева
Мне приятно думать, например, что намеченная еще в прошлом столетии магистраль Кейптаун–Каир
завершится, наконец, постройкой и будет продолжена через Кавказ до Петрограда
(по-англ. Leningrad), название Петербурга в 1924–1991.
Архитектурный путеводитель по Ленинграду. – Л., 1971.
Ленинград: Историко-географический атлас / Под ред. Юрия П. Селиверстова. – 1981.
Ленинград: Энциклопедический справочник / Ред. Л.С. Шаумян. – 1957. # Обзор истории
города, его экономики, общественного образования, учебных и культурных учреждений, архитектуры и
строительства, медицинского обслуживания, науки, литературы и искусства.
Очерки истории Ленинграда: В 6-ти т. / Под ред. М.П. Вяткина. – 1955–1970. # Анализ развития города
и его строительства, с рассмотрением этапов революционной истории.
Туристу о Ленинграде. –
http://www.nlr.ru/res/list/tourist.htm # Каталог книжной серии «Лениздата» (1965–1989).
Достопримечательности Ленинграда и его окрестностей. Список из 71 названий с предметным указателем.
Даринский Л.В. Ленинградская область; Ленинград. – Л., 1970.
Кальфа М.В. , Ребок М.В. Архитектура Ленинграда. – Л., 1957.
Пилявский В.И. Архитектура Ленинграда. – Л.; М., 1953.
Серпокрыл С.М. (составитель), Ленинград: Достопримечательности / 3-е, дополненное изд. – 1974. # Об
основных архитектурных памятниках, площадях, набережных, улицах и пригородных парках.
(по-англ. besieged Leningrad; синонимы и метонимии:
блокада Ленинграда; вкруг «града Ленина» блокада; Ленинград),
город Ленинград, в ходе
Великой Отечественной войны на продолжительное время изолированный от внешнего мира
немецкими и финскими войсками с целью вынудить его к сдаче либо выморить его население голодом.
(8 сентября 1941 – 27 января 1944)
После вторжения нацистской Германии в
в июне 1941, немецкие армии в начале сентября подошли к Ленинграду с запада и юга, в то время
как финские союзники достигли его по Карельскому перешейку с севера. Все здоровые
ленинградские жители были мобилизованы на строительство противотанковых сооружений по всему
периметру города для поддержки 200.000 красноармейцев, защищавших городs. Оборона Ленинграда
вскоре стала устойчивой, но в начале ноября он был почти полностью окружен, и все его жизненно важные
железнодорожные и другие пути перерезаны. В одном только 1942 году немецкая блокада и осада унесли жизни
650.000 ленинградцев, главным образом от голода, холода, болезней и обстрелов дальнобойной
немецкой артиллерии. Запасы еды и топлива изредка удавалось подвозить летом на баржах, а зимой
на грузовиках и аэросанях через Ладожское озеро. Эти поставки поддерживали в 1942 работу военных заводов
города и 2 миллиона его едва живых жителей, а еще 1 миллион детей, больных и стариков были эвакуированы.
В 1943 пищевой рацион на грани голода был облегчен с помощью новых овощных участков, покрывших почти всю
свободную землю города. Советское наступление в начале 1943 прорвало немецкое окружение и позволило
доставлять в Ленинград больше припасов по берегам Ладожского озера. В январе 1944 успешное
советское наступление отбросило немцев к западу от городских окраин и покончило с блокадой. Блокада
фактически продолжалась 872 дня, но за нею закрепилось название 900-дневной. В 1945 советское правительство
наградило Ленинград орденом Ленина, а в 1965 присвоило звание города-героя, отдав этим дань
стойкости города во время одной из самых изнурительных и памятных блокад мировой истории. Вместе с тем
цензура крайне подозрительно относилась к литературе, посвященной теме блокады. Страдания, голод, повальная
смерть ленинградцев – всё это не вписывалось в парадно-фанфарный героизм
в сталинском представлении. Такое отношение продолжалось и в годы застоя
на тексты Д. Андреева
Мы знали все: вкруг «града Ленина»
Блокада петлю распростерла.
Как раненный навылет в горло,
Дышать он лишь сквозь трубку мог –
Сквозь трассу Ладоги... В томлении
Хватал он воздух узким входом
И гнал по жаждущим заводам
Свой каждый судорожный вдох.
Мы знали все: что гекатомбами
Он платит за свое дыханье;
Что в речи русской нет названья
Безумствам боевой зимы;
Что Эрмитаж звенит под бомбами;
В домах мороз; мощь льда рвет трубы;
Паек – сто грамм. На Невском трупы...
О людоедстве знали мы. (1: 145-146).
на тексты А. Андреевой
Наступила первая военная зима в Москве. Она была тяжелой. В городе начался голод, конечно не тот,
я бы сказала, средневековый голод, который устроили в Ленинграде
Даниил уехал. Из Кубинки его отправили зимой
1943 года со 156-й стрелковой дивизией Ладожским озером по «Дороге жизни» в блокадный
Ленинград (ПНК: 112).
В июне 1943 года Даниил уже был в Латвии под Резекне. Он
прошел блокадный Ленинград, службу в похоронной команде,
подтаскивал снаряды, был привлечен к полевому суду
Шпионом ведь нельзя стать просто так, потому что тебя куда-то закинули. Наверное, для этого
требуются какие-то особые данные. Этих данных не было <...> у двух русских девочек – Тоши Холиной из
Подмосковья и Верочки Ивановой из блокадного Ленинграда. Тошу немцы поймали почти
сразу, потом она была в Равенсбрюке. Верочка Иванова, у которой вся семья умерла от голода в Ленинграде,
сама пошла куда-то, после краткого обучения была заброшена в Германию и также быстро попалась. Не помню
только, в каком она была немецком лагере (ПНК: 188).
Я пришла к Дымшицу <...> Оставила ему «Ленинградский Апокалипсис». У меня к тому времени уже был
сокращенный вариант. Я сама убрала оттуда всю мистику, оставив реалистическую, так сказать, поэму
о блокаде Ленинграда (ПНК: 267).
по блокадному Ленинграду
Акт Ленинградской городской комиссии о преднамеренном истреблении немецко-фашистскими варварами мирных
жителей Ленинграда и ущербе нанесенном хозяйству и культурно-историческим памятникам города за период
войны и блокады. – Л., 1945.
Девятьсот дней: Лит.-худож. сборник: К 5-летию освобождения Ленинграда от
вражеской блокады. – Л.: Лениздат, 1948. – 512 с. – 10.000 экз. # В сб. опубликованы «Ленинградский
дневник» В. Инбер и «Февральский дневник»
О. Берггольц. Вскоре сборник был изъят как «политически вредный» со следующей
мотивацией: «Авторы показывают жизнь города оторванной от общественной и политической жизни страны.
В подчеркнуто черном свете Инбер рисует ужасы блокады. Неоднократно упоминается фамилия
Зонина, ныне арестованного органами МГБ. В поэме
Берггольц преобладает чувство обреченности, пессимизма, содержатся элементы так называемой
кладбищенской поэзии». (А. Зонин – ленинградский литератор). Еще одной причиной
послужило помещенное в сборнике обращение к ленинградцам (1942), подписанное Петром
Сергеевичем Попковым, кандидатом в члены ЦК и 1-м секретарем Ленинградского обкома и горкома
ВКП(б), расстрелянным по «ленинградскому делу».
Адамович А., Гранин Д. Блокадная книга. – 1979 (со значительными цензурными купюрами); исправленное и дополненное издание. – 1989.
Рец.: Берггольц О.Ф. Об этой книге // Она же. Собр. соч.: В 3-х т. Т. 2. – Л., 1989.
Рец.: Распятые: Писатели – жертвы политических репрессий. Вып. 1. – СПб., 1993. – С. 59-64.
Азаров В.Б., Зиначев А. Живые, пойте о нас!: Документальная повесть. – Л.: Лениздат, 1969. –
240 с. – 100.000 экз.; дополненное изд. Л.: Лениздат, 1972. – 288 с. – 100.000 экз. # Повесть о трагической
(и бессмысленной, хотя об этом говорится очень глухо) гибели морского десанта в Петергофе, попавшего
в окружение в октябре 1941. В рассказ об этой истории вкраплены стихи Азарова. Книга
несколько раз переходила из общих фондов в спецхран и обратно, причем распоряжения об этом передавались
Берггольц О.Ф. Говорит Ленинград. – Л.: Лениздат,
1946. – 186 с. – 15.000 экз. # В книгу вошли стихи и ставшие уже легендарными тексты радиопередач
Берггольц, обращенные к жителям осажденного блокадного города. Книга была изъята, фактически
за блокадную тему, формальным же поводом запрещения послужил включенный в сборник очерк «Севастополь», где
положительно упоминается старший научный сотрудник Херсонесского Историко-археологического музея
А.К.Тахтай, который по данным соответствующих организаций во время
Великой Отечественной войны сотрудничал и работал у немцев: «“Мы ловили голос
Ленинграда с особым трепетом, – рассказывал Тахтай, – это был голос собрата по судьбе...”»
(с. 31). На с. 83 был помещен его портрет. Обвинение в этом Тахтая, крупного крымского
археолога, сохранившего коллекции музея в годы войны и оккупации, впоследствии снято.
Чаковский А.Б. Это было в Ленинграде: Повесть. –
Л.: Лениздат, 1945. – 212 с. – 2.000 экз. # Весной 1942, побывав в Ленинграде, Чаковский
начал работу над трилогией о судьбах людей блокадного города: первоначальное название – «Это было в
Ленинграде». Книга изымалась цензурой. Первая часть – «Военный корреспондент» – была издана в 1944, вторая
под названием «Лида» – в 1948, третья – повесть «Минувшие дни» – в 1947. Эти книги были использованы
в дальнейшем для документально-художественного повествования, романа «Блокада», вышедшего в 5 книгах
(1968–1974). Чаковский, посетив Ленинград, «видит какие-то высохшие скелетообразные
существа», умирающих от стужи и голода людей. В книге публикуется один из самых страшных документов –
Я вырос в ленинградскую блокаду,|
Но я тогда не пил и не гулял.
Я видел, как горят огнем Бадаевские склады,
В очередях за хлебушком стоял.
а что ж тогда вы делали,
Когда наш город счет не вел смертям? –
Ели хлеб с икоркою,
а я считал махоркою
Окурок с-под платформы черт-те с чем напополам.
От стужи даже птицы не летали,
И вору было нечего украсть,
Родителей моих в ту зиму ангелы прибрали,
А я боялся – только б не упасть.
Было здесь до фига
голодных и дистрофиков –
Все голодали, даже прокурор.
А вы в эвакуации
И слушали по радио «От Совинформбюро».
Блокада затянулась, даже слишком,
Но наш народ врагов своих разбил,–
И можно жить, как у Христа за пазухой, под мышкой,
Да только вот мешает бригадмил.
Я скажу вам ласково:
– Граждане с повязками!
В душу ко мне лапами не лезь!
Про жизню вашу личную
Знают уже органы и ВЦСПС.
Main page: Andreev encyclopædia
(in Russian Петербург), official name Saint Petersburg, Russian Sankt Petersburg), city,
extreme northwestern Russia. A major industrial and cultural centre and an important port, it lies about
400 miles (640 kilometres) northwest of Moscow and only about 7° south of the Arctic Circle.
The second largest city of Russia and one of the world's major cities, St. Petersburg has played
a vital role in Russian history. For two centuries it was the capital of the Russian Empire. The city is
particularly renowned as the scene of the February and October revolutions of 1917 and as the besieged and
fiercely defended city of World War II. Architecturally, it ranks as one of the most splendid and
harmonious cities of Europe. Its historic central district was added to UNESCO's World Heritage List
Physical and human geography
The city site
St. Petersburg is located on the delta of the Neva River, at the head of the Gulf of Finland.
The city spreads across nearly 42 islands of the delta and across adjacent parts of the mainland
floodplain. The very low and originally marshy site has made the city subject to recurrent flooding,
especially in the fall, when strong cyclonic winds drive gulf waters upstream, and also at the time of
the spring thaw. Exceptionally severe inundations occurred in 1777, 1824, and 1924, the last two being
the highest on record and flooding most of the city. To control the destructive floodwaters, the city
began construction in the 1980s of an 18-mile-long dike across the Gulf of Finland. A number of canals
also have been cut to assist drainage. These, together with the many natural channels, make St. Petersburg
a city of waterways and bridges and have earned it the nickname “Venice of the North.”
Greater St. Petersburg, the city itself with its satellites, forms a horseshoe shape around
the head of the Gulf of Finland and includes the island of Kotlin in the gulf. On the north it stretches
westward along the shores for nearly 50 miles to include Zelenogorsk. This northern extension is an area
of dormitory towns, resorts, sanatoriums, and children's camps set among extensive coniferous forests and
fringed by fine beaches and sand dunes. Some influential citizens also have summer cottages, or dachas,
in this area. On the southern side of the gulf, the metropolitan limits extend westward to include
Petrodvorets and Lomonosov. Eastward, Greater St. Petersburg stretches up the Neva River to Ivanovskoye.
The mitigating effect of the Atlantic Ocean provides St. Petersburg with a milder climate than
might be expected for its far northern site. Nevertheless, winters are rather cold, with a mean January
temperature of about 18° F (-8° C), a few degrees warmer than Moscow. Winter temperatures can drop below
-40° F (-40° C), however. Snow cover lasts on the average about 132 days. The Neva begins to freeze
normally about mid-November, and the ice is solid by the start of December; breakup begins in mid-April and
usually is completed by the end of the month. Icebreakers prolong the navigation season. Summers are
moderately warm, with an average temperature of 64° F (18° C) in July. The mean annual precipitation
amounts to about 23 inches (584 millimetres), the maximum coming in summer. Because of St. Petersburg's
northerly location, winter nights are long; in early summer, on the other hand, the city enjoys
the half-light “white nights,” one of its most renowned features.
The city layout
Central St. Petersburg is divided by distributaries of the Neva River into four sections.
The Admiralty Side lies along the left (south) bank of the Neva itself. Between the two major arms
of the Neva, the Bolshaya (Great) Neva and the Malaya (Little) Neva, is Vasilyevsky Island.
The Malaya Neva and the distributary known as the Bolshaya Nevka enclose a group of islands known as
the Petrograd Side, while east of the Bolshaya Nevka and north of the Neva lies the Vyborg Side.
The Admiralty Side
Much of St. Petersburg's historical and cultural heritage is concentrated on the Admiralty Side.
The district centres on the Admiralty. This, the nucleus of Peter's original city, was reconstructed in
1806–1823 by Andreyan D. Zakharov as a development of the earlier building of Ivan K. Korobov, remodeled
in 1727–1738, but retaining the layout of the original. Its elegant spire, topped by a weather vane
in the form of a ship, is one of the principal landmarks of the city. The building today houses a naval
Just to the east lies the great Palace Square, the city's oldest. The 600-ton granite monolith
of the Alexander Column (1830–1834), the tallest of its kind in the world and so finely set that its base
is not fastened, thrusts up for 165 feet (50 metres) near the centre of the square.
Between the square and the river rises the huge and massive rectangle of the Winter Palace,
the former principal residence of the tsars. The present structure, the fifth to be built, was
the Baroque masterpiece of Bartolomeo F. Rastrelli. Construction of it began in 1754 and was completed
in 1762. Both the exterior and the interior of the palace were designed in dazzlingly luxurious style.
In 1837 the building was destroyed by fire, and only the adjoining Hermitage survived; the Winter Palace
was recreated in 1839 almost exactly according to Rastrelli's plans. The striking appearance of the palace
is highlighted by white columns against a green background, with golden stucco moldings; 176 sculptured
figures line the roof. The whole complex, now called the Hermitage, or State Hermitage Museum, is
a treasure-house of fine art of worldwide significance that originated in 1764 as the private collection
of the tsarina Catherine II.
Opposite the Winter Palace, the great crescent of Carlo Rossi's General Staff building (1811–1829)
dominates the square. The two wings of the building are joined by a huge triumphal arch, topped by heroic
figures and crowned by a chariot carrying a figure representing Glory, expressing the Russian victory
in the campaign of 1812.
On the western (downstream) side of the Admiralty stretches the expanse that was called
Senate Square when the Senate moved there in 1763; it is now called Decembrists' (or Dekabrists') Square
in commemoration of the revolt in 1825. The buildings of the former Senate and Synod (now housing
archives) dominate the western side of the square, their decorated facades dating from the 1830s and
representing the last great work of Rossi. They are separated by an arch looking across to the centre
of the square where stands the equestrian statue of Peter the Great, known as the “Bronze Horseman” and
created in 1782 by Etienne Falconet. Near the Senate and Synod buildings to the south rises the classical
front of the Horse Guards Riding School, or Manezh (1804–1807); beyond, dominating the south side of
St. Isaac's Square, is the cathedral of the same name. An outstanding monument of late classical Russian
architecture built by Auguste Montferrand (1818–1858), St. Isaac's is one of the largest domed buildings
in the world; its golden cupola, gilded with about 220 pounds (100 kilograms) of pure gold, soars
to 331 feet in height and is visible all over St. Petersburg. It is now a museum.
From the Admiralty and its surrounding squares radiate three great avenues, of which the most
important and best known is the Nevsky Prospekt (see ). One of the world's great thoroughfares,
the Nevsky Prospekt cuts southeastward across the peninsula formed by the northward loop of the Neva
to the vicinity of the Alexander Nevsky Abbey, crossing the smaller Moyka and Fontanka rivers.
The Anichkov Bridge across the latter is graced by four sculptured horses. The street has a special
beauty: the architecture is majestic, the buildings are graceful and finely proportioned, the construction
is complex. On the Nevsky Prospekt stand the Stroganov, Shuvalov, and Anichkov palaces (former private
residences of the nobility) and several churches, of which the most prominent are
St. Peter's Lutheran Church (1833–1838), St. Catherine's Roman Catholic Church (1763–1783), and
the Kazan Cathedral (1801–1811). The latter edifice, undoubtedly the street's finest feature, was designed
by Andrey Voronikhin in Russian classical style and has an interior rich in sculptures and paintings
behind a magnificent semicircular frontal colonnade. Another interesting building is the department store
Gostiny Dvor (1761–1785), originally designed by Jean-Baptiste M. Vallin de la Mothe. This building
forms an irregular square and opens onto four streets; formerly it was a mercantile centre. Other
department stores line the Nevsky Prospekt, as do many theatres – most notably
the Pushkin Academic Drama Theatre – restaurants, and cafés.
At the eastern end of the Nevsky Prospekt, Alexander Nevsky Square fronts the main entrance to
the abbey of the same name and its surrounding gardens. Beyond the square's main entrance lie,
on the left and right, respectively, monuments and sculptures of the 18th-century Lazarus Cemetery
(where Mikhail V. Lomonosov and many of the city's architects are buried) and
the 19th-century Tikhvin Cemetery (containing the graves of such writers and composers as Dostoyevsky,
Mussorgsky, and Tchaikovsky). Behind rise the spires and cupolas of the Church of the Annunciation (1720,
designed by Domenico Trezzini), which is now a museum, and Holy Trinity Cathedral (1778–1790, designed
by Ivan Starov).
Through the Admiralty Side and intersecting the radial avenues cut the natural channels and canals
that so characterize the city. The most important, in outward order from the Admiralty, are the Moyka and
Fontanka rivers and the Griboyedov and Obvodny (Bypass) canals. Downstream from the northern entrance
of the Fontanka into the Neva lies the Field of Mars, one of the city's beautiful open spaces. Begun
under Peter the Great (when it was known as the Field of Amusement), it was intended for popular
festivities and fireworks. It was a favourite haunt of the 18th-century nobility, but its present name
derives from a monument erected in 1801 and portraying the great Russian military leader
Aleksandr V. Suvorov (buried in the Church of the Annunciation) as the god of war. In the 19th century
the space was used for military parades and exercises. The fallen of the February Revolution of 1917 and
the defenders of the city during the civil war and foreign military intervention (1918–1920) were buried
there. They are commemorated by an eternal flame.
Just to the east lies the Summer Garden. Founded on an island in 1704, it has parks and gardens
that, by the end of the 18th century, contained more than 250 statues and busts, mostly the work
of Venetian masters. The Summer Palace, Peter's first in the city, erected 1710–1714 in early
Russian Baroque style and designed by Trezzini, stands in the northeastern portion. The Neva embankment
is fronted by a fence (1784), the iron grille of which is reputed to be among the world's finest examples
of wrought iron work. So light and delicate is its design that the grillwork almost seems to be suspended
At the extreme eastern side of the central city, within the sharp bend of the Neva itself, lies
the Smolny complex of buildings; these include the former convent, with the five-domed cathedral, designed
by Rastrelli and begun in 1748, and the classical building of the Smolny Institute, constructed by
Giacomo Quarenghi in 1806–1808. The institute was used as Lenin's headquarters in 1917.
One of the first areas of St. Petersburg to be developed because of its defendable position,
Vasilyevsky Island forms the northwestern corner of the central city. Opposite the Admiralty and
Winter Palace, at the island's eastern tip, is the remarkable architectural complex known as the Strelka
(literally, “Pointer”), facing the bifurcation of the Neva. Behind the two great Rostral Columns,
decorated by carved ships' prows, and across Pushkin Square, the point rises majestically to
the former Exchange building (Thomas de Thomon, 1805–1810), the city's finest example of early 19th-century
style and reminiscent of a classical Greek temple in appearance; it now houses the Central Naval Museum.
Farther back, the Twelve Colleges building (Trezzini, 1722–1742), originally intended to house
the supreme governmental bodies of Peter the Great, is now the home of the city's state university.
The building is divided into 12 identical but independent sections and runs at right angles to the Neva
embankment, which is fronted at that point by the facades of the main building of
the Academy of Sciences, the Menshikov Palace, and the Academy of Arts. On the far, or northern, side
of the Exchange is the Customs House (now the literary museum and the Institute of Russian Literature
known as Pushkin House), designed by Giovanni Luchini (1829–1832).
The Petrograd Side
Upstream of the bifurcation of the Neva is the Petrograd Side, where the great Peter-Paul Fortress
faces the Strelka across the Malaya Neva. Founded in 1703, this fortification, the city's first structure,
initially had earthen walls, but these were soon replaced by stone walls 40 feet high and 12 feet thick,
with 300 cannons mounted on the bastions. Above the squat horizontal lines of the fortress's massive walls
soars the slender, arrow-like spire of the Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul, a golden landmark
for the city. The cathedral was built in 1712–1733 by Trezzini, and the tsars and tsarinas of Russia from
the time of Peter the Great (except for Peter II and Nicholas II) are buried in it. Trezzini also designed
St. Peter's (Petrovsky) Gate (1718) as the eastern entrance to the fortress. The Neva Gate, designed by
Nikolay A. Lvov, dates from 1787. From the early 19th century the fortress was used as a prison, chiefly
for political prisoners. Today it is a museum. At noon each day a cannon is fired from its battlements.
Just to the east of the Peter-Paul Fortress, where the Bolshaya Nevka River begins,
the cruiser Aurora is permanently moored as a museum and training vessel for the Naval College. It was
the Aurora that in 1917 fired the blank shot that served as the signal to storm the Winter Palace.
The Vyborg Side
The northeastern part of the central city had by the late 19th century developed into
an industrial suburb. One of its most famous features is the Finland Railway Station, which faces
the Admiralty Side across the Neva. Lenin returned to Russia in April 1917 via this station, and there
he made his initial pronouncement of a new course that would bring the Bolsheviks to power. A major
street of the Vyborg Side is the Prospekt Karla Marksa, along which stand such buildings as
the Cathedral of St. Sampson.
The outer region
St. Petersburg now extends well to the north and south of the original delta site, with arms
of growth extending westward along the banks of the Gulf of Finland. The newer outer suburbs include
extensive open areas, which help to reduce the overall population density, and parts of the periphery
are designated as greenbelt. However, the multiplicity of large housing blocks containing numerous two-
or three-room apartments means that population densities in the built-up areas remain extremely high.
As in virtually all modern cities, commuting over long distances is the price paid for more living space
and the cleaner air of the suburbs. Among the suburbs noteworthy for their historic and cultural value
are Petrodvorets, Pushkin, Pavlovsk, and Gatchina.
The most famous of the communities around St. Petersburg is Petrodvorets (Peterhof before 1944),
whose unique garden-park setting, stretching in terraces rising above the Gulf of Finland, contains
representative works from two centuries of Russian architectural and park styles. The Great Palace,
the former residence of Peter the Great, stands at the edge of the second terrace, its bright yellow
walls contrasting with white stucco decorations and the gilt domes of its lateral wings. Built in
the Baroque style (1714–1728), it was reconstructed and expanded by Rastrelli from the mid-1740s to
the mid-1750s. On the north the building commands a view of the Grand Cascade, a grandiose structure
including a grotto, 64 fountains, and two cascading staircases, which lead to an enormous semicircular
basin that contains a giant statue of Samson wrestling with a lion (see photograph). This statue,
symbolizing the military glory of Russia, is a copy of the original statue by Mikhail I. Kozlovsky,
which was carried off by the Nazis during World War II. In fact, much of the town's treasure was
plundered, and this magnificent vista becomes all the more remarkable when it is remembered that much
of it is a post-World War II restoration.
The town of Pushkin (called Tsarskoye Selo before 1917, Detskoye Selo in 1918–1837) arose
in the early 18th century as one of the tsarist residences. The Catherine Palace (1717–1723; enlarged
by Aleksey V. Kvasov and Savva I. Chevakinsky, 1743–1748; rebuilt by Rastrelli, 1752–1757) is notable
for its dimensions, the beauty and majesty of its form, and the wealth of its sculptural decoration.
The golden suite of splendid halls (including the Amber Room) exemplifies Russian Baroque at its peak.
The community also is the site of the Chinese Village (1782–1796) in Alexander Park and the gallery
(1780–1790) named after its architect, Charles Cameron, the terraces of which contain more than 50 busts
of figures from ancient Greek and Roman history. The Lycee, a school for the offspring of the nobility,
had the great Aleksandr Pushkin as a student, and a famous statue of the poet stands near the town's
Egyptian Gates. The town suffered severe damage during the German onslaught but has been restored.
Pavlovsk, a southern suburb, is the site of a late 18th- and early 19th-century palace and park
in the classical style that was created as a country residence for Tsar Paul I. The central Great Palace
(1782–1786; Cameron) is crowned by a dome supported by 64 columns. It was severely damaged by the Nazis
and has been restored.
Another southern suburb, Gatchina, is noted for the palace built in 1766–1781 by Antonio Rinaldi
for Count Grigory Orlov, a favourite of Catherine II. Gatchina Park was created at the same time.
Its monuments, sculptures, and gardens, like those of all St. Petersburg, are preserved by the state.
The population of St. Petersburg is overwhelmingly Russian. Before the Revolution the city had
sizable Polish, Baltic, and German and smaller Tatar, Jewish, and Chinese communities. In the interwar
period it continued to act as a magnet for Russian peasant labour, and, even in the more homogeneous
postwar city, newcomers have tended to outnumber those native to St. Petersburg. Nevertheless, observers
have commonly ascribed certain traits to the people – politeness, a sophistication, a slight reserve –
that have seemingly passed from generation to generation. The old intelligentsia is no more, but many
people in St. Petersburg, living in a city designed as a cultural centre, consider themselves to be
the most cultivated of Russians.
St. Petersburg is one of the major industrial centres in Russia, with more than half
of its working population employed in factories and the building trades; its products are distributed
throughout Russia and beyond. The city also makes important contributions in scientific and technical
Engineering accounts for more than half of the city's industrial output. Special emphasis
is placed on those branches of engineering that require a skilled labour force and relatively small
quantities of metal. St. Petersburg's original industry, shipbuilding, is still important and remains
one of the largest of its kind in Russia; it produces icebreakers (some atomic-powered), tankers,
timber carriers, and fishing vessels. Other sectors of heavy engineering make armaments and rolling stock.
Of national importance are a plant producing nuclear reactors and others that manufacture electrical
and power machinery, such as steam, hydraulic, and gas turbines, armatures, and generators.
Precision engineering includes tools and instruments, refrigerators, radios, televisions, and
other electrical and electronic goods. Machinery is produced for automated factories and for the knitwear
and footwear industries.
Chemical-based industries rank second to engineering in importance. These make a wide range
of items, such as superphosphate fertilizers (using apatite from the Kola Peninsula), tires and other
synthetic rubber goods, plastics and plastic goods, artificial and synthetic fibres, paints, and
pharmaceutical preparations. There are industries producing a wide range of consumer goods, with
the city itself as their principal market. These include the production of cotton and woolen textiles,
clothing, footwear, tobacco products, beer, and foodstuffs. St. Petersburg has a long-established and
sizable printing industry.
Electrical power for these industries comes from hydroelectric plants on the Volkhov, Svir,
and Vuoksa rivers and, more recently, from nuclear power stations. Natural gas is piped to St. Petersburg
from the southern regions of European Russia and Central Asia.
St. Petersburg is one of Russia's most important hubs of transportation. Its port, the nation's
largest, is of international significance. The main harbour is protected by breakwaters and is reached
by a dredged channel from Kronshtadt. Imports include metal pipes, factory equipment, chemicals, sugar,
cotton, and fruit, while machinery, timber, coal, potassium salts, and pyrites form the bulk of exports.
Passenger liners maintain regular summer services to Stockholm and to Tilbury, Eng. Smaller seagoing
ships have access by way of the Neva to Lake Ladoga and thence throughout the inland waterway system
of European Russia. From Lake Ladoga the Svir River, Lake Onega, and the White Sea Canal (Belomor Kanal)
lead to the White Sea and the Russian Arctic coast. From Lake Onega the Volga-Baltic Waterway system
leads to the Volga basin and Caspian Sea and, via the Volga-Don Canal, to the Black and Azov seas.
The main airfield, Pulkovo International Airport, is located 11 miles south of the city.
The city is a focus of rail routes, with trunk lines radiating to Helsinki, Fin., and Warsaw
as well as to Moscow and other major Russian cities. There are five principal passenger rail terminals –
the Moscow, Vitebsk, Warsaw, Baltic, and Finland stations. A network of suburban electric services
connects the outer parts of St. Petersburg and its satellite towns. Internal city traffic is carried
by a subway system (opened in 1955) and a well-developed network of bus, streetcar, and trolleybus
Administration and social conditions
Since 1931 St. Petersburg has been designated a “city of republican subordination” – that is,
its city council is directly subordinate to the government of the Russian republic. The council members
are elected for two-year terms. The city itself is divided into 16 administrative wards. In addition
to these, there are five towns in the outer part of Greater St. Petersburg administered by the local
government, which have status equivalent to that of the administrative wards; these include
Petrodvorets, Pushkin, Sestroretsk, and Kronshtadt, on the island of Kotlin. Two other towns, Zelenogorsk
and Pavlovsk, and 17 urban districts are subordinate to the administrative ward councils. St. Petersburg
is also the administrative centre of St. Petersburg oblast (province). As a residue of the city's former
status as capital, certain organizations still maintain their national headquarters in St. Petersburg,
among them the all-union geographic, chemical, and medical societies.
Services and health
Much of the city's housing was destroyed during World War II and was replaced by massive postwar
building programs. As a result, a large proportion of the people live in relatively new and modern
apartments, some in high-rise buildings. Virtually all housing has central heat and is tied to the city's
sanitation and power services.
St. Petersburg is fully equipped with the health services of a modern city. There are several
hundred clinics providing medical and dental care and maternity and nursing services. Medical care also
is provided by more than 150 general and specialized hospitals. As in the rest of Russia, health care
in St. Petersburg is free.
St. Petersburg is one of Russia's most important centres for education and scientific research;
a sizable proportion of the employed population is engaged in education, the arts, and the sciences.
Heading the educational establishments is the city's state university, founded in 1819. No less renowned
and even older are the Academy of Arts, founded in 1757, the Institute of Mines (1773), and
the Military Medical Academy (1798). St. Petersburg also has a polytechnic institute (1899), as well
as numerous other higher educational establishments, general schools, and specialist and technical
A focus for research is the library of the Russian Academy of Sciences (from 1925 to 1991,
Academy of Sciences of the U.S.S.R.), which remained in the city when the academy's headquarters moved
back to Moscow after the Revolution. The research establishments of the Academy of Sciences in the city
include the Botanical, Geological, Forestry, and Zoological institutes as well as the Pulkovo Observatory.
The city is the principal centre in Russia for Arctic research, notably at
the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute and the Institute for the Study of Permafrost.
St. Petersburg evolved as a city of culture, and the number and quality of its cultural
institutions remain one of its enduring attractions. It has many large and grand theatres and auditoriums.
The Mariinsky Theatre (called the Kirov State Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet during the Soviet
period) has long enjoyed an international reputation, and its resident company is frequently on tour
abroad. Other important theatres are the Maly (Little), Gorky, Pushkin, and Musical Comedy theatres.
The largest of several concert halls is the October Great Concert Hall, which seats 4,000 people.
The city's musical tradition has been enhanced by the Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory. Notable museums
include the Hermitage and the State Russian Museum, which specializes in Russian painting. St. Petersburg
is a significant centre of the country's motion-picture industry.
There are a large number of libraries in the city, headed by the Saltykov-Shchedrin Public Library
on the Nevsky Prospekt, established in 1795; among libraries in Russia, it is second only to
Moscow's Lenin Library. Another important specialized collection is in the Pushkin House literary museum
on Vasilyevsky Island.
St. Petersburg has abundant recreational facilities. Among the notable stadiums in the area
is Kirov Stadium, which seats approximately 100,000 spectators. Other opportunities for outdoor recreation
are provided by the Kirov Park of Culture and Rest, the zoo, the botanical gardens, and numerous other
smaller parks and gardens.
The early period
Foundation and early growth
Settlement of the region around the head of the Gulf of Finland by Russians began in the 8th or
9th century AD. Known then as Izhorskaya Zemlya, or more commonly as Ingermanland, or Ingria, the region
came under the control of Novgorod, but it long remained thinly populated. In the 15th century the area
passed, with Novgorod, into the possession of the grand princes of Moscow. Sweden annexed Ingria in 1617
and established fortresses along the Neva. During the Second Northern War (1700–1721) Peter the Great,
seeking a sea outlet to the west, constructed a fleet on the Svir River (which connects Lakes Onega and
Ladoga) and, sailing across Lake Ladoga, launched an attack on the fortress of Noteburg (now
Petrokrepost), where the Neva flows out of Ladoga. In 1703 Noteburg fell to Peter; afterward he captured
the Swedish fortress of Nienshants on the lower Neva, thus gaining control of the delta.
On May 16 (May 27, New Style), 1703, shortly after the fall of Nienshants, Peter himself laid
the foundation stones for the Peter-Paul Fortress on Zayachy Island. This date is taken as the founding
date of St. Petersburg. In the spring of the following year, Peter established the fortress of Kronshlot,
later Kronshtadt, on Kotlin Island in the Gulf of Finland, to protect the approaches to the delta.
At the same time, he founded the Admiralty shipyard on the riverbank opposite the Peter-Paul Fortress;
in 1706 its first warship was launched. Around the fortress and shipyard Peter began the building of
a new city to serve as his “window on Europe.” Just upstream of the Peter-Paul Fortress, the first small
house, built for Peter himself in the early days of the city's construction, is preserved as a museum.
Although the first dwellings were single-storied and made of wood, it was not long before stone
buildings were erected. The first stone palace, still preserved, was completed in 1714 for Prince
Aleksandr Danilovich Menshikov, first governor of the city. From the start the city was planned as
an imposing capital, on a regular street pattern, with spacious squares and broad avenues radiating out
from the Admiralty. Architects, craftsmen, and artisans were brought from all over Russia and from many
foreign countries to construct and embellish the new town. In 1712 the capital of Russia was transferred
there from Moscow, although it was not until 1721 that Sweden, in the Peace of Nystad, formally ceded
sovereignty of the area to Russia. Members of the nobility and merchant class were compelled by Peter
to move to the new capital and to build houses for themselves. Government buildings and private palaces
and houses arose swiftly; among the earliest buildings were the Merchants' Exchange (now the Naval Museum),
Customs House (now the Museum of Literature), and marine hospital, together with the Summer Palace. Canals
for drainage were cut through the marshy left bank of the Admiralty Side. The first floating bridge over
the Neva was constructed in 1727, and soon more than 370 bridges had been built across the many canals
and river channels. Marshy, flood-prone land and an inhospitable climate made construction expensive
in terms of human life; St. Petersburg, it was later suggested, rested on a swamp of human bones.
A harbour was constructed, and Peter took measures to curtail traffic through Arkhangelsk
on the White Sea, previously Russia's major port. In consequence, as early as 1726 St. Petersburg
was handling 90 percent of Russia's foreign trade. In 1703 work began on the Vyshnevolotsky Canal
in the Valdai Hills, the first link in a chain that by 1709 gave the capital a direct water route
to central Russia and all of the Volga basin. Industry soon began to develop. The original and
flourishing Admiralty shipyard was joined by enterprises to supply its needs and those of the growing
fleet – a foundry to produce cannons, a gunpowder factory, and a tar works. Merchantmen as well as warships
were built, and before the end of the 18th century papermaking, printing, and food, clothing, and footwear
industries had been established; as early as the 1740s a factory was set up to make china. By 1765
the population numbered 150,300, and by the end of the century it had reached 220,200, of whom more
than a third were in the armed forces or the administration.
The rise to splendour
The growing city displayed a remarkable richness of architecture and harmony of style. Initially
the style was one of simple but elegant restraint, represented in the cathedral of the Peter-Paul Fortress
and in the Summer Palace. In the mid-18th century an indelible stamp was put on the city's appearance
by the architects Bartolomeo F. Rastrelli, Savva I. Chevakinsky, and Vasily P. Stasov, working
in the Russian Baroque style, which combined clear-cut, even austere lines with richness of decoration
and use of colour. To this period belong the Winter Palace (see photograph), the Smolny Convent, and
the Vorontsov and Stroganov palaces, among others; outside the city were built the summer palaces
of Peterhof and of Tsarskoye Selo. After a transitional period, dominated by the architecture of
Jean-Baptiste M. Vallin de la Mothe and Aleksandr Kokorinov, toward the end of the 18th century a pure
classical style emerged under the architects Giacomo Quarenghi, Carlo Rossi, Andrey Voronikhin, and
others. The Kazan and St. Isaac's cathedrals, the Smolny Institute, the new Admiralty, the Senate, and
the Mikhaylovsky Palace (now the State Russian Museum) are representative of the splendid buildings
of this period.
Within this grand architectural setting, cultural life developed and flourished. In 1773
the Institute of Mines was established. The University of St. Petersburg was founded in 1819. Many of
the most celebrated names in Russia in the spheres of learning, science, and the arts are associated
with the city: Mikhail V. Lomonosov, Dmitry I. Mendeleyev, Ivan Pavlov, Aleksandr Pushkin, Leo Tolstoy,
and Fyodor Dostoyevsky, among others. Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment was set in the city, and
the buildings described in the novel are a focus of tourism. As early as 1738 the first ballet school
in Russia was opened in St. Petersburg; in the 19th century, under Marius Petipa, the Russian ballet rose
to worldwide renown and produced such dancers as Vaslav Nijinsky, Tamara Karsavina, and Anna Pavlova.
In 1862 the first conservatory of music in Russia opened its doors, and there the premieres of works
by Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Rachmaninoff, and other composers were performed. Over all, as focus
and patron of the city's cultural life, stood the imperial court; its ostentatious splendour and wealth
were legendary throughout Europe.
Evolution of the modern city
The road to revolution
The imperial magnificence, centred on the tsarist autocracy, was in sharp contrast to the other
side of St. Petersburg's development, the growth of its industrial proletariat. During the 19th century
there was much industrial growth in the city, accelerated by improvements in communications and extension
of trade. Navigation was opened on the Mariinsky (1810) and Tikhvin (1811) canal systems, which replaced
an old and inadequate system. In 1813 the first Russian steamship was built in St. Petersburg, and
in 1837 the first Russian railway was constructed from the city to the Summer Palace in Tsarskoye Selo
(now Pushkin). Five years later work started on the railway to Moscow, opened to traffic in 1851. A line
to Warsaw was built in 1861–1862, followed by still others. In particular, the cotton textile and
metalworking industries flourished, the former using imported raw materials. By the 1840s more than
60 percent of Russian imports were entering by way of St. Petersburg. In 1885 a channel was dredged
to give larger ships access to the port. City growth and industrialization were stimulated
by the emancipation of the Russian serfs in 1861, which allowed far greater mobility of labour.
From 539,400 inhabitants in 1864, the population rose to about 1,500,000 in 1900, largely by migration
from rural areas (as late as 1910 only one-third of the population had been born in the city). By 1917
the total had risen to about 2,500,000.
The factory environment in St. Petersburg became a breeding ground for revolution.
With the development of metalworking and engineering as the primary industries, there arose
a skilled labour force, increasingly alert politically. Moreover, the factory workers, who numbered
nearly 250,000 in 1914, tended to be concentrated in plants of far larger size than was usual in Russia;
the Putilov (later renamed Kirov) armaments works alone employed about 13,000. It was thus easier
for revolutionaries to spread their ideas and for workers' groups to organize than it was elsewhere
in Russia. At the same time, the growth of the city was characterized by a belated and slow development
of public transport, making it necessary for workers to live close to their place of work, in conditions
of appalling overcrowding (more than 180,000 per square mile in the centre), squalor, and lack
of sanitation. Throughout the period before 1917 the city administration was lacking in efficiency
and often in funds, and the provision of all public services – even a water supply – was inadequate.
Outbreaks of serious epidemics were commonplace.
The first serious revolutionary outbreak in St. Petersburg came on December 14 (December 26),
1825: the Decembrist insurrection, organized largely by liberal aristocrats and army officers seeking
a liberal constitution and an end to serfdom. It was ruthlessly suppressed. During the rest
of the 19th century, workers' revolutionary activity and unrest steadily increased, with ever more
frequent strikes and outbreaks of violence. These culminated in the general strike of January 1905,
when some 150,000 workers took part. On what became known as Bloody Sunday, January 9 (January 22),
a mass march to the Winter Palace, bearing a petition to the tsar, was met by troops, who opened fire;
more than 100 people were killed and hundreds more wounded. The situation developed into revolution,
spreading throughout Russia. Although it was again crushed, underground revolutionary activity continued.
In 1914–1924 – see Petrograd.
In 1924–1991 – see Leningrad.
After the fall of the Soviet Union later that year, the 1990s brought the city
an increase in crime and governmental corruption. Assassinations and kidnappings became common. Also during
the decade the financial and economic focus of the country turned more toward Moscow and away from
St. Petersburg. In 1994 election turnout was so poor that the city spent most of the year without
a council; meanwhile, mayor Anatoly Sobchak (elected in 1990) hosted the Goodwill Games and lavish state
visits. Sobchak was defeated in 1996. The city was hard hit by the 1998 Russian financial crisis.
Doroshinskaya, Yelena Matveyevna (journalist); French
R.A., McAuley M. Saint Petersburg // Encyclopædia
A bibliography on Petersburg
Bater, James H. St. Petersburg: Industrialization and Change. – 1967. # For historical background.
(in Russian Петроград), the name of Petersburg in 1914–1924; also
the future name of Petersburg in “The Rose of the World.”
The outbreak of World War I in 1914 brought an upsurge of patriotic fervour centred on
the tsar. The Germanic form of the city's name was changed to its Russian version, Petrograd. The military
disasters of the war and the worsening economic situation, however, revived and intensified discontent.
Transport inefficiencies led to severe shortages of food and other supplies. On February 26 (March 11),
1917, with a general strike in effect, disorder broke out. The authorities were slow to act and lost all
control. The Petrograd Soviet of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies was formed on February 27 (March 12).
On March 2 (March 15) the tsar abdicated. A provisional government was set up, eventually under
the premiership of Aleksandr Kerensky. On April 3 (April 16) Lenin returned
to Petrograd from Switzerland and set about organizing the overthrow of the provisional government.
Demonstrations in July were suppressed, but on October 25 (November 7) Bolshevik-led workers and sailors
stormed the Winter Palace, deposing the provisional government and establishing the Bolshevik Party
The Russian Revolution of 1917, which changed the course of history, was spearheaded
by the Petrograd proletariat and the sailors from Kronshtadt. In January 1918 a Constituent Assembly met
in Petrograd, but the Bolsheviks, who had won only a minority of seats, dispersed it and consolidated
Civil war reigned in Russia from 1918 to 1920, during which the Bolsheviks successfully
defended their government against various Russian and foreign elements. In March 1918 the capital
of the young Soviet state had been moved back to Moscow. The years of the civil war after the Revolution
had a disastrous effect on the city's economy. Industry came very nearly to a standstill. The population
fell sharply to 722,000 in 1920, a mere third of the pre-Revolutionary size. Many died of starvation.
Recovery began when the war ended. Further see Leningrad.
Saint Petersburg (the end of chapter “The road to revolution”
and the beginning of chapter “The Soviet period”) // Encyclopædia Britannica, 2010.
A bibliography on Petrograd
Almedingen E.M. Tomorrow Will Come. – 1941, reprinted 1983. # A memoir spanning the revolutionary
(in Russian Ленинград), the name of Petersburg in 1924–1991.
In 1924, following Lenin's death, the city was renamed Leningrad. When in 1928 the era of five-year
plans began, much of the initial burden of developing the national economy fell on the city and its
established industrial plant and work force, especially in the provision of power equipment and machinery.
This stimulated further growth; by 1939 the city was responsible for 11 percent of all Soviet industrial
output, and its population had passed three million.
Then once again the city was struck by a period of loss and destruction. It was one of the initial
targets of the German invasion in 1941 (see besieged Leningrad). For its role in
the war, Leningrad was honoured with the title of “Hero City,” a special defense medal, and the Order
of Lenin. Not until the 1960s did the city regain its prewar size of three million; by the 1980s
the population had passed four million.
The first postwar Soviet five-year plan was devoted in part to reconstruction of the city's
industry and restoration of its architectural heritage. In the late 1950s a program of housing construction
in the new suburbs got under way; renovation of highly sought-after inner-city apartments began
in the 1970s. In the face of continuing construction and expansion, maintenance of the old city and
modernization of the infrastructure became major problems. In response the city planners pioneered new
forms of industrial administration, drawing on the city's strength as a scientific and technical centre and
emphasizing the need to preserve its unique cultural heritage.
Major changes in the city's political life began to occur in the late 1980s, when the central
government of the U.S.S.R. introduced reforms that encouraged greater democratization and openness.
The nationwide legalization in March 1990 of political parties other than the Communist Party had
an especially sharp impact on Leningrad, as two months later elections for the city council gave a group
of reform-minded Communists and reformers outside the Communist Party a substantial majority of the council
seats. The council quickly pushed for a variety of free-market measures and initiated a process
of stripping the Communist Party of assets and privileges in the city. Reflecting this movement away
from the city's Communist past, voters in a June 1991 citywide referendum chose to restore the city's name
of St. Petersburg. Further see Petersburg.
Saint Petersburg (fragment of the chapter “The Soviet period”) //
Encyclopædia Britannica, 2010.
A bibliography on Leningrad
Berezina A. Leningrad: A Short Guide / Translated from Russian. – 1981.
Cattell, David T. Leningrad: A Case Study of Soviet Urban Government. – 1968. # An account of
the city government.
Gosling, Nigel. Leningrad: History, Art, Architecture. – 1965.
Gregory,John; Ukladnikov, Alexander. Leningrad's Ballet: Maryinsky to Kirov. – 1980. #
The cultural history is discussed.
Kann, Pavel. The Environs of Leningrad / Translated from Russian. – 1981.
Mawdsley, Evan; Mawdsley, Margaret (editors). Moscow and Leningrad. – 1980.
Neubert K.; Neubert J. Portrait of Leningrad. – 1966.
Robinson, Logan. An American in Leningrad. – 1982. # An account by a Harvard law student.
Ruble, Blair A. Romanov's Leningrad // Problems of Communism. – 1983. – Nov.–Dec., № 32(6). –
Р. 36-48. # For politics and city planning in the 1970s.
Shaw, Denis J.B. Planning Leningrad // Geographical Review. – 1978. – April, № 68(2). –
P. 183-200. # For politics and city planning in the 1970s.
(in Russian блокадный Ленинград; also called 900-day siege), the city
of Leningrad, for long time isolated from the external world by German and Finnish armed
forces during the Great Patriotic War on purpose to compel it to surrender or
to clem its population out. The siege actually lasted 872 days.
(September 8, 1941 – January 27, 1944)
After Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941, German armies by early September had
approached Leningrad from the west and south while their Finnish allies approached to the north down
the Karelian Isthmus. German troops were on the outskirts of the city. Leningrad's entire able-bodied
population was mobilized to build antitank fortifications along the city's perimeter in support of
the city's 200,000 Red Army defenders. Leningrad's defenses soon stabilized, but by early November it had
been almost completely encircled, with all its vital rail and other supply lines to the Soviet interior cut
off. Many of the inhabitants and nearly three-quarters of the industrial plant were evacuated eastward
ahead of the German advance. The remainder of the population and the garrison then began to endure.
Leningrad put up a desperate and courageous resistance in the face of many assaults, constant artillery and
air bombardment, and appalling suffering from shortages of supplies.
The ensuing German blockade and siege claimed 650,000 Leningrader lives in 1942 alone, mostly from
scurvy, starvation, exposure, disease, and shelling from distant German artillery. In particular
the exceptionally bitter winter of 1941–1942, when temperatures fell to -40° F (-40° C), was one of extreme
hardship and loss of life. Sparse food and fuel supplies reached the city by barge in the summer and by
truck and ice-borne sled in winter across the ice of Lake Ladoga. This only route for supplies was called
the “road of life”. The delivered supplies kept the city's arms factories operating and its two million
inhabitants barely alive in 1942, while one million more of its children, sick, and elderly were being
evacuated. Starvation-level food rationing was eased by new vegetable gardens that covered most open
ground in the city by 1943.
Later an oil pipeline and electric cables were laid on the lake bed. The blockade proper
was broken in January 1943. Soviet offensives ruptured the German encirclement and allowed more copious
supplies to reach Leningrad along the shores of Lake Ladoga, but it was another year before the Germans had
been driven back from the outskirts. In January 1944 a successful Soviet offensive drove the Germans
westward from the city's outskirts, ending the siege. Enormous damage had been caused by the bombardment,
and, before retreating, the Germans destroyed the palaces at Petrodvorets and Pushkin.
The Soviet government awarded the Order of Lenin to Leningrad in 1945 and bestowed the title Hero
City of the Soviet Union on it in 1965, thus paying tribute to the city's successful endurance of one of
the most grueling and memorable sieges in history.
Saint Petersburg (fragment of the chapter “The Soviet period”) //
Encyclopædia Britannica, 2010.
Leningrad, Siege of // Encyclopædia Britannica, 2010.
A bibliography on besieged Leningrad
Salisbury, Harrison E. The 900 Days. – 1969, reprinted 1985.
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This web-page was created by M.N. Belgorodskiy on March 8, 2011
and last updated on March 23, 2011.