Pyotr Yakovlevich Tchaadayev

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Pyotr Yakovlevich Tchaadayev

Pyotr Chaadayev ( Russian Пётр Яковлевич Чаадаев , scientific transliteration. Pëtr Jakovlevic Čaadaev ; May * 27 . Jul / 7. June  1794 greg. In Moscow , † April 14 jul. / 26. April  1856 greg. ) Was a Russian Philosopher and political thinker.

Life and effect

After Tschaadajew left Moscow University in 1812 without a degree, he joined the army and served in the Napoleonic Wars . In 1816 he entered the Masonic Lodge Sojedinjonnyje Bratja ( Russian Соединённые братья , United Brothers ) and left it in 1822. In the later 1820s he was a frequent guest in Moscow literary circles, befriended Pushkin and served as a literary model for Alexander Griboyedov Satirist Chatsky in his comedy Mind Creates Suffering .

His first philosophical letter , which was initially written in French in 1829 and published in the magazine Teleskop in 1836, made him known in the educated circles of Russia and caused a sensation. In it he described Russia as spiritual ... completely insignificant and blamed the Russian Church for the " Russian backwardness ". After the publication of this letter, Tsar Nicholas I had him declared insane and forbade him to publish anything. Chaadayev, however, continued to work and wrote the Apology of a Madman that same year . In it he developed theses that led to the clashes between the currents of Slavophiles and Westerners .


“We have no tradition or history to educate our people. We are without a past and without a future. Isolated from the rest of humanity, we lack any development of our own, any real progress. We are completely untouched by the ideas of duty, justice and order that make up the atmosphere of the West [...] Confusion is a common trait in our people [...] Providence seems to have completely ignored us. We own a huge country - but spiritually we are completely insignificant, a void in the world order. "

- First Philosophical Letter, published in: Teleskop , No. 15, Moscow 1836


  • Apology of a madman. Historical-philosophical writings . Reclam, Leipzig 1992, ISBN 3-379-01422-2 .
  • Philosophical works of Peter Chaadaev . (Eds. Raymond T. McNally, Richard Tempest). Springer, Berlin 1991, ISBN 0-7923-1285-6 .
  • Oeuvres inédites ou rares . (Ed. R. McNally). Salve, Center d'Etudes Russes, Meudon 1990, ISBN 2-908706-00-8 .
  • Philosophical letters & Apology of a madman . Univ. of Tennessee Press, Knoxville 1969, ISBN 0-87049-102-4 .
  • Writings and letters . Trans. U. a. by Elias Hurwicz , Drei Masken, Munich 1921.

Individual evidence

  1. А. Лебедев. Чаадаев ( Memento of the original from July 24, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /


Web links