Zénon Bernard

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Johann Zénon Bernard (13 February 1893 in Kahler – 25 June 1942 in Kassel[1]) was a Luxembourgian communist politician. He led the Communist Party of Luxembourg during its first two decades of existence, and was the first communist elected to the parliament of Luxembourg. He died in German captivity during the Second World War.

Political activism[edit]

Bernard was a metal worker by profession.[2] He joined the socialist movement when the First World War broke out. He became a leading figure in the leftwing faction of the Socialist Party, advocating affiliation to the Communist International. In January 1921, he took part in the founding of the Communist Party of Luxembourg and became the secretary of the Central Committee of the party. In May 1921, he became the party chairman.[2]

Bernard was elected to parliament in the 1934 national election. He was the first Luxembourgian communist elected to parliament.[3][4][5] He was, however, barred from occupying his seat by the centre-right majority, on the pretext that as a revolutionary Bernard could not swear on the Constitution.[3][4]

Resistance and imprisonment[edit]

After the German invasion of Luxembourg in the Second World War, Bernard headed the underground activities of the Communist Party. He was arrested by Gestapo in September 1940. Bernard died in German captivity.[2]


Bernard was a football player in his youth. He played for Sporting Club Luxembourg between 1911 and 1914. He played in the Luxembourg national football team twice, against France on 29 October 1911, and again against France on 8 February 1914.[6] In the latter game, a friendly, he scored a goal,[6] and Luxembourg won the match by 5-4, the only time Luxembourg ever beat France.[7]


Bernard was a resident of Esch-sur-Alzette.[8] A street is named after him in the city, where the Communist Party and its newspaper Zeitung vum Lëtzebuerger Vollek has its offices.[9][10] There is also a street named after him in Differdange.[11]


  1. ^ Mémorial du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg. Samedi , 22 mars 1947. N° 15
  2. ^ a b c Great Soviet Encyclopedia. Бернард, Зенон
  3. ^ a b "Le référendum au Grand-Duché de Luxembourg". Government of Luxembourg. Retrieved 6 January 2011.
  4. ^ a b Jacobs, Francis, and John Fitzmaurice. Western European Political Parties: A Comprehensive Guide. Longman international reference. Harlow, Essex, U.K.: Longman, 1989. p. 245
  5. ^ "Communist Wins Election". Baltimore Sun. July 8, 1934. p. 4.
  6. ^ a b EU-Football.info. PLAYER: Zenon Bernard
  7. ^ "Luxembourg make short journey to France". UEFA. Retrieved 30 December 2010.
  8. ^ Archives nationales de Luxembourg. CR 3643 Zénon Bernard, 1947-1947 (Dossier)
  10. ^ Zeitung vum Lëtzebuerger Vollek
  11. ^ Ville de Differdange. Commissions Consultatives