Ten Days That Shook the World, by John Reed

Appendix to Chapter x


Damage to the Kremlin

I myself verified the damage to the Kremlin, which I visited immediately after the bombardment. The Little Nicolai Palace, a building of no particular importance, which was occupied occasionally by receptions of one of the Grand Duchesses, had served as barracks for the yunkers. It was not only bombarded, but pretty well sacked; fortunately there was nothing in it of particular historical value.

Usspensky Cathedral had a shell-hole in one of the cupolas, but except for a few feet of mosaic in the ceiling, was undamaged. The frescoes on the porch of Blagovestchensky Cathedral were badly damaged by a shell. Another shell hit the corner of Ivan Veliki. Tchudovsky Monastery was hit about thirty times, but only one shell went through a window into the interior, the others breaking the brick window-moulding and the roof cornices.

The clock over the Spasskaya Gate was smashed. Troitsky Gate was battered, but easily reparable. One of the lower towers had lost its brick spire.

The church of St. Basil was untouched, as was the great Imperial Palace, with all the treasures of Moscow and Petrograd in its cellar, and the crown jewels in the Treasury. These places were not even entered.


Lunatcharsky’s Declaration

“Comrades! You are the young masters of the country, and although now you have much to do and think about, you must know how to defend your artistic and scientific treasures.

“Comrades! That which is happening at Moscow is a horrible, irreparable misfortune…. The People in its struggle for the power has mutilated our glorious capital.

“It is particularly terrible in these days of violent struggle, of destructive warfare, to be Commissar of Public Education. Only the hope of the victory of Socialism, the source of a new and superior culture, brings me comfort. On me weighs the responsibility of protecting the artistic wealth of the people…. Not being able to remain at my post, where I had no influence, I resigned. My comrades, the other Commissars, considered this resignation inadmissible. I shall therefore remain at my post…. And moreover, I understand that the damage done to the Kremlin is not as serious as has been reported….

“But I beg you, comrades, to give me your support…. Preserve for yourselves and your descendants the beauty of our land; be the guardians of the property of the People.

“Soon, very soon, even the most ignorant, who have been held in ignorance so long, will awake and understand what a source of joy, strength and wisdom is art….”


Questionnaire for the Bourgeoisie


Revolutionary Financial Measure

In virtue of the powers vested in me by the Military Revolutionary Committee attached to the Moscow Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies, I decree:

1. All banks with branches, the Central State Savings Bank with branches, and the savings banks at the Post and Telegraph offices are to be opened beginning November 22nd, from 11 A. M. to 1 P. M. until further order.

2. On current accounts and on the books of the savings banks, payments will be made by the above mentioned institutions, of not more than 150 rubles for each depositor during the course of the next week.

3. Payments of amounts exceeding 150 rubles a week on current accounts and savings banks books, also payments on other accounts of all kinds will be allowed during the next three days — November 22nd, 23d, and 24th, only in the following cases:

(a) On the accounts of military organisations for the satisfaction of their needs;

(b) For the payment of salaries of employees and the earnings of workers according to the tables and lists certified by the Factory Committees or Soviets of Employees, and attested by the signatures of the Commissars, or the representatives of the Military Revolutionary Committee, and the district Military Revolutionary Committees.

4. Not more than 150 rubles are to be paid against drafts; the remaining sums are to be entered on current account, payments on which are to be made in the order established by the present decree.

5. All other banking operations are prohibited during these three days.

6. The receipt of money on all accounts is allowed for any amount.

7. The representatives of the Finance Council for the certification of the authorisations indicated in clause 3 will hold their office in the building of the Stock Exchange, Ilyinka Street, from 10 A. M. to 2 P. M.

8. The Banks and Savings Banks shall send the totals of daily cash operations by 5 P. M. to the headquarters of the Soviet, Skobeliev Square, to the Military Revolutionary Committee, for the Finance Council.

9. All employees and managers of credit institutions of all kinds who refuse to comply with this decree shall be responsible as enemies of the Revolution and of the mass of the population, before the Revolutionary Tribunals. Their names shall be published for general information.

10. For the control of the operations of Branches of the Savings Banks and Banks within the limits of this decree, the district Military Revolutionary Committees shall elect three representatives and appoint their place of business.

Fully-authorised Commissar of the Military Revolutionary Committee,



Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:59