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The expression Slavophile , roughly Slavic enthusiasts , describes a political and journalistic movement which, since the 1820s, formed the Czech and Russian forerunners or early representatives of Pan-Slavism , which opposed the position of Westerners . The phase lasted in Prague until the Slavs Congress of 1848 or at most until the appearance of the first Young Czechs in 1860, in Russia until the death of their main representatives in 1860.


The term was coined in Germany, where Johann Gottfried Herder and Friedrich Schelling were enthusiastic about a heroic Slav ideal and where many Slavophiles had also studied.

The discussion between Westerners and Slavophiles sparked in 1836 Pyotr Tschaadajew with his "First Philosophical Letter", in which he denounced negative sides of Russia and described the country as retrograde .

Among the Czechs Josef Dobrovský , František Palacký and the Czechophile Slovak Jan Kollár were considered to be the masterminds of an initially purely literary and historical return to the Slavs . The Russians were dominated by the theologian Alexei Khomyakov and, above all, the brothers Ivan and Konstantin Aksakov (sons of Sergei Aksakov ) and the brothers Petr and Ivan Kirejewski . After 1848 the Czechs first brought about Austroslavism , the Russians after 1860 not only Pan-Slavism but also Pan-Russianism .


In contrast to the Westerners, who strived for a Europeanization of Russia, the Russian Slavophiles remembered the "originally Russian" (e.g. Igorlied ). Thanks to Haxthausen (“Studies on the Inner Conditions of Russia…”, 1847) they discovered the Russian village of Mir as an extended family.

In their orientation, the Slavophiles used enlightened ideas, they demanded the abolition of serfdom and the enlightenment of the people.

List of other Russian Slavophiles

The people named below were well-known and more or less self-confessed Slavophiles. Inaccurately, representatives of later Pan-Slavism and Pan-Russianism are also called this way.

See also


  • Nicholas V. Riasanovsky: Russia and the West . The teaching of the Slavophiles. Isar Verlag, Munich 1954, DNB  454013973 .
  • Andrzej Walicki: Personality and Society in the Ideology of Russian Slavophiles . In: California Slavic Studies . No. 2 , 1963.
  • Bernice Glatzer-Rosenthal: Lofty Ideals and Wordly Consequences: Visions of Sobornost 'in Early Twentieth-Century Russia . In: Russian History . No. 20 , 1993, p. 179-195 .

Individual evidence

  1. "Slav chapter" , Section IV. Of the 16th book from "Ideas for the Philosophy of the History of Mankind"
  2. Nicholas V. Riasanovsky: Russia and the West. Pp. 32-59.