Extortionist of money. The history of the famous Kiev bribe
Nikolai Pisarev was the most famous Kiev bribe the nineteenth century. For a long time he got away with it. Not least because it was beneficial to his boss — the Governor-General Dmitry Bibikova
Stanislav Calic – 04.03.18 62010
In 1837 Dmitry Bibikov was assigned to Kiev for the post of Governor-General. Looking for people who will go with him from St. Petersburg to “the mother of cities”, he remembered Nikolai Pisarev.
At the time, working as the Director of the Department of foreign trade of the Ministry of Finance, Dmitry Gavrilovich took the service of this 18-year-old graduate of the University hostel. The young man showed his best side: a proactive, intelligent, Executive, picked it up immediately.
Especially impressed by Bibikova that this official of the new generation is absolutely not taking bribes — the cause is put above all. Although rich it is not: he is the representative of an ancient but long-impoverished family.
Ten years as head of the Department of foreign trade, Bibikov zealously fought with all kinds of abuse, particularly bribery in the customs Department. Actually, the fight with the customs corrupt, and cost him the seat: they had strong ties to the entourage of the Emperor and made the resignation too pushy Director of the Department.
Two years after that, a fighter against corruption was irrelevant.
Now in Kiev, Dmitry Gavrilovich was going to continue the fight against bribery. Offered 30-year old Nikolay Pisarev prestigious post of officer on special assignments. He gladly agreed.
A simple rule
Bibikov was ruled from Kiev in three provinces. Officially his title was long, but impressive: Kiev, Podolia and Volyn Governor-General. He formed a great team. In particular, persuaded the Emperor to appoint in Kiev civil Governor 35-year-old Ivan Fundukley, a man of complete integrity.
NIKOLAI PISAREV. The portrait at the beginning of Kiev’s career
The entourage of Nicholas I (the one that “ate” Bibikova to the position of Director of the Department) tried to dissuade the monarch from the nominations. Say, Fundukley — millionaire and a major entrepreneur. In the province of Kiev he and glassworks, and sugar, and vivcharne, and lands of 20 thousand acres. If you sit in the Governor’s chair, will lobby for private commercial interests. To the detriment of economic development of the province. But the autocrat said: “This is certainly bribes will not take their money nowhere to go!” and signed the decree.
Ivan Fundukley really did not take offerings, breaking in the provincial government corrupt hierarchy in which rank and file officers share the bribes with their immediate superiors, those with their bosses and so on, until a civil Governor.
But with Nikolai Pisarev was different.
He came to Kiev with a young wife Sophia and one-year-old daughter. Bibikov quickly carried away by the beauty. And to “my dear Nikolai Maratovich” do not interfere, sent him on errands in the most remote counties.
The Governor-General lived in Kiev without a family — his wife (also, incidentally, Sophia) did not want to move to province with four children, the youngest of whom was not four years old. Dmitry Gavrilovich periodically run in Petersburg, and as a result of these short visits with his wife at Bibikova was born the fifth child. However, the main time the Governor General spent in Kiev with Sophia Pisareva more and more attention.
Nikolai Marasovich, as usual, about the courtship of the boss for my better half found out last, when all Kiev hotly debated the twists and turns of whirlwind romance, “one-armed” (Bibikov lost his left arm in the war against Napoleon). To prevent unnecessary excesses by the cuckold husband, the Governor General appointed him ruler of his office. And made it clear that he is ready to close eyes on any of his antics in this post. Than Pisarev did not fail to take advantage.
In Kiev has long operated a simple rule: no more or less important the issue wasn’t resolved without a bribe. The office, the police, the courts — everywhere it is necessary “to give”. And after Ivan Fundukley refused to take the offerings, puzzled by the petitioners amicably reached for Nikolai Pisarev.
“In order not to be arrested”
Current Affairs three huge provinces — ranks, appointments, nominations for the awards and even the institution of criminal cases — actually ran Pisarev. The Governor-General was engaged only in military matters and contacts with St. Petersburg.
Before Nikolay Maratovich a fawned. And he quickly figured out how to use this for financial gain. For example, Berdichevsky district police officer (the head of district police), wanting to demonstrate zealous service, reported that a Benedict Bentkovskiy is engaged in the manufacture of counterfeit banknotes.
Pisarev, depicting the anger on his face, ordered to immediately deliver to his counterfeiter.
DMITRY BIBIKOV. Portrait of the days of the General government
— What it you, dear? Want to go to jail? So it is with us fast.
— What are You — Bentkovskiy found his purse. — Here are a couple of thousand — I give them to You for viewing. If at least one bill will be fake, can without trial to send me to Siberia.
Parted highly satisfied with each other.
All posts in three provinces of the Governor’s office sold. With introduced solid prices. So, the place of the district police officer cost 500 to 600 rubles depending on the yield of the County. For comparison: for 8 rubles per month in Kiev you can rent a three-room apartment in a stone house with stables in the yard. However, the bribe was paid off in a couple of months: position generates income (salary plus “levies”) from 8,000 to 12,000 rubles a year.
For the appointment of judge Nicholas Marasovich took 300-600 rubles. He managed to rip off money even for those positions that do not promise any income, except for salaries. For example, for the seat the headmaster had to unfasten 500-600 rubles, although parents of high school students were not reset for the repair of the school, and parents of graduates is presented to the Director-valuable gifts — nothing in addition to the official tuition fees. And even as an ordinary teacher of the district school — work in a highly prestigious, with a meager salary had to pay. Paid! Otherwise you will be left without jobs and pensions.
More impressive Pisarev income received from the tenants of government property: there are numbers was a four. In fact, good management of the Treasury was administered by civil governors. But Nikolai Maratovich understand the situation, “pressed” tidbit from indifferent to the offerings Fundulea. Kiev was the only city of the Empire, where property issues were resolved in the office of the Governor-General.
Rent of government property involves the procedure of audits conducted of the exchequer. Pisarev had the authority to defer checking to a later date, so that tenants have time to complete a different kind of “left-wing” Affairs. The delay, of course, cost money, and considerable. So, if the official hire was, for example, 3000 rubles per year, then the postponement followed the “Golden handshake” for 1000 rubles.
The “honey” season for the Governor’s office was January, when in Kiev on Kontraktova fair was attended by landowners from all three provinces. Everyone had to pay him compensation. Contemporary explained it simply: “in Order not to be arrested”.
“Pisarev, despite the fact that took with landlords bribes, treated them very proudly, — witness Baron Andrey Delvig. — I happened during contracts to play Pisareva cards, and when she came during our game reverent lords and bowed at the entrance almost to the floor, Pisarev almost bent neck, leaving us playing with him one minute, entered with the landlord in his office, where, of course, taking the prescribed dues, let him go and, sitting down again at the card table, not paying any attention to the low bowing of the outgoing pan.”
THE GENERAL-GOVERNOR. Sofia Bibikova did not want to go to Kiev. Artist Petro basin, 1839
Over time, Nikolai Marasovich so inflated prices for their services that even seasoned Kiev takers have started to complain to the Governor-General. Finally decided to reason with a slave, lost a sense of proportion. He called Pisarev, and lovingly said,
— Listen, you go nasty rumors.
— What, Your Excellency?
— Say, you take bribes.
— You never know what to say, î chuckled the Governor’s office, the rumors can’t be trusted. For example, I say that You are alleged criminal links with my wife. But I don’t believe it! So You don’t believe idle stories.
Money on the table
Sometimes Pisarev showed peculiar sympathy to those who ruthlessly stripped the money. During the summer of 1848 it was the Director Nemirovskaya gymnasium — a del’sal ‘ — with a request to appoint him chief of police in any County. Such a strange request (from teachers to police) is not surprised by Pisarev. To it often treated the people who wanted to improve their difficult financial situation by getting a “profitable places”.
Del’sal ‘ received a salary of 400 rubles a year and the same amount earned by giving private lessons. On this money it is possible to live. But he married a young wealthy widow. “They have begun to live a fun and widely — recalled those who knew this pair of Avtonom Satanovsky, and for two years lived and the house and property, and money; were to multiply debts.”
Then del’sal ‘ and went to Pisarev, who, according to the same diarist, “took it into his office very graciously”. Nikolai Maratovich listening to the visitor, slowly pacing a huge Cabinet to the mirror and back. Stopping in front of the mirror and without turning around, he dryly reported that vacancies of the police officer in the moment. It would seem that the audience was over. However, the headmaster knew the rules of the game. He walked over to a small table in the corner of the Cabinet and put it under the oilcloth 500 rubles. To get them, he sold the last gold ornaments of his wife.
ON THE OLD MEMORY. Becoming the Minister of internal Affairs, Dmitry Bibikov saved the former Governor of his office
Pisarev, standing with his back to the supplicant, and watched his actions in the mirror — saw and table, and notes placed under a draw sheet.
— I forgot perked up and he soon appears, within the County of available space police officer. Enter tomorrow by 11, I’ll have to inquire.
It means he wants to count the money.
The next morning the Governor’s office said that after three weeks, the vacant place of Secretary in the winery and del’sal ‘ will be appointed, which will get an official notice.
The visitor asked if he could resign from the school.
— Can easily, — was the answer.
Here in Kiev, del’sal ‘ went to the office of the Kiev school district and submitted his resignation. It was granted immediately, because the Manager of the school district is ex officio a Governor-General. That is Dmitry Bibikov. And in fact — the same Nikolai Pisarev.
In a state of euphoria del’sal ‘ off in Nemirov, where roughly celebrated a successful trip every day, then feast. It’s been three weeks — no news. Passed the fourth week — Kyiv is silent. Five minutes to the district police officer, of course, worried, but patiently waiting.
It suddenly came to him rumor: Pisareva transferred to another province. Del’sal ‘ immediately went to Kiev. The Governor’s office didn’t welcome him. Said that he retired and passed the case — it already depends nothing. The visitor is asked to return 500 rubles. Pisarev depicted surprise, then anger, then cried out that libel villain exiled to Siberia. Del’sal ‘ the poor man in a state of extreme excitement fell to his knees. Said he death is not terrible, because for the sake of these 500 rubles he had sold the gold ornaments of the wife, the last value remaining in the house.
Pisarev opened the safe and returned the money. This enabled the former Director of the school to buy another ruler of the Kyiv office — the school district — the position of inspector in Nemyriv.
Meanwhile Mykola Maratovich wasn’t lying. He really had taken over. Dmitry Bibikov “gave” him a substantial increase in the rank of state Councilor (the civilian equivalent of a General) and the position of Governor of Olonets province. In the long term, he lights and Metropolitan career.
Of course, it is not that finally decided to get rid of the odious corrupt. On the contrary, he was satisfied that the whole routine is responsible for Pisarev. The reason lay elsewhere: the Governor-General has a new favorite. Now Pisarev nor Sophia, nor her tenacious husband more in Kiev is not needed.
In Petrozavodsk, the administrative center of Olonets province — Mykola Maratovich taken numerically increased the family: in Kiev, his second daughter was born. I think with the departure of high-ranking corrupt kiyani breathe freely? On the contrary. Count Henryk Rzewuski wrote to a friend that Kyiv and all three of the province “in great anxiety by reason of the offset G. Pisarev, because during the power of this gentleman was known at least someone had to give, and now God knows who.”
THE HOUSE PASSIONS. In the Governor’s mansion on the street Dmitry Bibikov was often Sophia Pisarev
In Petrozavodsk Pisarev has left the old manners. Has laid under tribute the whole city and the whole province. Acted aggressively and scale, as used in Kiev. They paid him for. However, there was one disgruntled official of the exchequer. Refused to pay for his place. Stubborn and should be punished in order to discourage others were.
However, nothing to complain about — the official proved to be an excellent employee. Nikolai Maratovich fired him under false pretenses. It had consequences. In the summer of 1851 in the Church, during the divine Liturgy performed by the Bishop, dismissed the officer approached the Governor and all gave a resounding slap. The incident immediately hit the pages of Newspapers, it became known in St. Petersburg. The story of illegal dismissal became public. Surfaced and corrupt activities of Nikolai Pisarev.
Petrozavodsk Kiev, here was not all-powerful Bibikova, covering the tricks of the taker. In St. Petersburg has appointed a consequence, at the fault of the Governor “went” into retirement.
To office trouble added personal. Wife Sophia in Petrozavodsk bore him a third daughter. However, after the scandal with a slap to the wife disappeared. As it turned out, fled with her lover. After taking all the money from the Bank — as many of the then corrupt, Pisarev put the “left” of capital to the account opened in the name of his wife.
Eventually left without a job, a beggar, covered with shame. And under investigation. He was sent to St. Petersburg and imprisoned in the chamber of the fortress.
Rescued Dmitry Bibikov, appointed in the summer of 1852 the Minister of internal Affairs of the Russian Empire. The case of the Governor-bribe hushed — Minister, in particular, alarmed, will not emerge if during the investigation of the Kiev antics of his former ruler of the office. 45-year-old Nikolai Pisarev was released from the fortress, and commanded him to go to the estate and no longer appear in the capital. On pursuing a career could not be considered.
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Some of his contemporaries later wrote in his memoirs that Pisarev, unable to endure the shame, soon died in his estate in the Tula province. Nothing of the sort! After his release from prison he lived another 32 years. Seems to be wrote memoirs (the fate of the manuscript is unknown). Died in 1884 in Venice.
Photo: from personal archives of the author