16/4/1917 Socialist firebrand Lenin arrives in Petrograd, proclaims opposition to the war


Lenin‘s long train journey from Zurich is over. Late this evening his train arrives in Petrograd from Finland. The exiled socialist is greeted by a band playing the Marseillaise and an excited crowd, some of whom may have shown up for the free beer that has become customary on the arrival of former political exiles.

Lenin then addresses the crowd outside the station, proclaiming that the recent revolution is only the beginning of a socialists revolution that will sweep the world. He also expresses his implacable opposition to the war. This puts him at odds with the Provisional Government, which supports the continued war effort. Many in the Petrograd Soviet also favour continuing the war, both to defend the revolution and to bring freedom to territories under German and Austro-Hungarian control. Lenin is now placing himself and his Bolshevik party at the head of the anti-war movement.

image sources:

Lenin arrives in Petrograd (Why Evolution Is True)

Socialist Realist depiction of Lenin arriving in Petrograd (Burbank, California)

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