Savitskii, Petr Nikolaevich – Materials from Personal Inheritance

Name Savitskii, Petr Nikolaevich – Materials from Personal Inheritance Petr N. Savitskii (1895–1968)
Petr N. Savitskii (1895–1968)
Catalog Number T-SAV
Volume 267 inventory units, 23 archival boxes
State of Cataloging The collection has been fully cataloged and is freely accessible
Languages of Documents Russian, Czech, rarely French, German, Polish and English

Petr Nikolaevich Savitskii (May 3, 1895, Chernigov – April 13, 1968, Prague) – an economist and geographer, co-founder and thinker of Eurasianism. He graduated from the Faculty of Economy of the Polytechnic Institute in Saint Petersburg. During the civil war, he fought against the Bolsheviks and defended the Crimea; he was also a member of general Wrangel’s general staff. He emigrated in the late 1920. A year after in Sofia, N.S. Trubetskoi, P. Savitskii and others founded the Eurasianist movement. Since 1922, he permanently lived in Prague. He taught at the Russian Law Faculty and worked as a professor of Russian and Ukrainian language at the German university. Between 1940 and 1944, he was a principal of the Russian grammar school (“gymnazium”) in Prague and cooperated with the Kondakov Institute.

Since he came to Prague, Savitskii was fully involved in the Eurasianist movement and was a leader of the Prague Eurasianist Group. In 1923-1938, he was a director of the publishing house Evrasiiskoe knigoizdatelstvo. On May 21, 1945, he was arrested by the Soviet intelligence service (SMERSH), deported to the USSR and sentenced to 10 years in labor camps. After his return into Czechoslovakia in 1956, he was forbidden to teach. In 1960, he published a collection of patriotic poetry in Paris, including poems from the period of his imprisonment. It caused his two-year conviction in Czechoslovakia, although after an intervention by a group of outstanding British and American scientists, he was released in 1962. He died in Prague in 1968.

The Savitskii’s file contains documents, correspondence, manuscripts and other material from the "Eurasianist Archive". Correspondence includes mostly letters from the period after Savitskii’s return back from the USSR in 1956. They are written mainly in Russian and sent to/from persons outside of Czechoslovakia (USSR, Western Europe, overseas). The largest part of received personal correspondence is from the ethnologist and historian Lev Nikolaevich Gumiliov, the son of the poet Nikolai Gumiliov (33 letters). Other important senders are N. S. Andreev (incl. letters written by his mother), G. V. Vernadskii and N. N. Alekseev. Fairly large correspondence from his relatives is sorted apart. For example, there are 47 letters written by Savitskii to his family during the year 1955 from Mordovian ASSR.

The manuscript collection is various. It contains all sorts of documents, from essays to approx. 80 notebooks, to poems, incl. those from labor camps. The Eurasianist Archive is made mostly of a collection of reactions on "Eurasianist" publications from European press and several magazines issued by the Eurasianist movement.

The bibliography of Petr N. Savitskii’s published works was published by the Slavonic Library at 2008.


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