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    Lenin, Vladimir Ilyich. Rare and important autograph letter signed ("N. Lenin"), 1 November 1911. 3-pages (5.4 x 8.25 in.; 137 x 210 mm) on conjoined leaves, in German, Paris, 1 November 1911, written to the Czech Social-Democratic leader Anton Nemec in Prague, with original transmittal envelope addressed in Lenin's hand. The letter concerns organizing the famous All-Russia Conference of the Russian Social-Democratic Labor Party in Prague. Lenin adopted the pseudonym "N. Lenin" in 1901 when he was involved in revolutionary activities in Germany. Includes envelope addressed to Nemec by Lenin's wife, revolutionary Nadezhda Krupskaya, postmarked Paris, 29 April [19]12, with enclosed 4.25 x 7.5 in. (108 x 190 mm) printed pamphlet in German "Der Anonymus aus dem Vorwaerts und die Sachlage in der Sozialdemokratischen Arbeiterpartei Russlands" discussing the results of the Prague Conference. Usual folds. Lenin writes to Czech Social-Democratic leader Anton Nemec arranging the clandestine All-Russia Conference of the Russian Social-Democratic Labor Party in Prague - a milestone event in the development of Communism. Lenin writes in full (translated from German): Dear Comrade, I should be much obliged if you would assist me with your advice and help in the following matter: several sections of our Party intend to convene a Conference (abroad of course). The number of Conference members will be from twenty to twenty-five. Would it be possible to organize the Conference in Prague? (It would last about a week.) It is very important for us to organize the affair in extreme secrecy. No one, not a single organization, must get to hear of it (the Conference is to be Social-Democratic and consequently legal, according to European laws, but most of the delegates do not possess passports and cannot give their real names). I would ask you, dear comrade, if you think it is possible, to help us and to let us know as soon as you can the address of a comrade in Paris, who (in the event of an answer in the affirmative) could arrange this matter practically. It would be best if the comrade understood Russian, but if that is impossible, we could make ourselves understood in German. I hope, dear comrade, you will forgive my troubling you with this request. I thank you in advance. With Party greetings, N. Lenin The Sixth All-Russian Conference of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party (RSDLP) was held, as Lenin hoped, in Prague from 5-17 January 1912, with assistance from Czech comrades. The Prague Conference was an important turning point because it was used to expel the Mensheviks from the party, accomplished by at least partially excluding them from the Conference. This is the point at which Bolshevik was added to the party name, and, at Prague, it was decided to change the party newspaper from a weekly to a daily paper with the name Pravda (which remained the organ for the Communist Party of the Soviet Union until 1991). Lenin's demand for secrecy here reflects the need to keep the gathering from being known to government authorities, as well as rival political groups and the minority faction within his own party. Very few letters of Lenin exist. As a revolutionary, he had to operate from exile and/or clandestinely for so many years. Many were intercepted by the authorities, and some were sent by such circuitous routes that they went astray. Those that reached their intended recipients were often destroyed because of their incriminating content. Provenance: Christie's, London, 24 June 1992, Lot 374. From the collection of William J. Bell.

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    July, 2020
    23rd Thursday
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