Nikolai Shelgunov

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Nikolai Vasil'evich Shelgunov (1824–1891) was a Russian revolutionary democrat, journalist, and literary critic.

Nikolai was the son of a nobleman born in Saint Petersburg on November 22 (December 4), 1824. He studied at the Imperial Forestry Institute in Saint Petersburg, graduating in 1841 and joining the staff of the forestry department of the Ministry of State Domains. By the late 1850s he was appointed professor at the Forestry Institute.

Shelgunov met M. L. Mikhailov in 1855. The two men travelled to London in 1858 and 1859, meeting Alexander Herzen and Nikolay Ogarev. Shelgunov returned to Russia and got involved with Nikolay Chernyshevsky contributing to the journals Russkoe slovo, Sovremennik, and Vek. He participated in the revolutionary movement of the 1860s co-writing To the Younger Generation with Mikhailov. He also wrote the unpublished proclamation To Russian Soldiers From Their Well-wishers. He also introduced the Russian public to Frederick Engels' work The Condition of the Working Class in England through his article 'The Working Proletariat in England and France' (Sovremennik, 1861, nos. 9–11).


  • Sochineniia, 3rd ed, vols. 1–3. St. Petersburg [1904].
  • Literaturnaia kritika Leningrad, 1974.
  • Vospominaniia in N. V. Shelgunov, L. P. Shelgunova, and M. L. Mikhailov, Vospominaniia, vol. 1. Moscow, 1967.
  • Neizdannye stranitsy vospominanii Prometei, vol 2. Moscow, 1967.