Chaadayev, Piotr Yakovlevich pyô´tər yä´kəvlyĭvĭch chädä´yĕv [key]
, 1794–1856, Russian philosopher. An aristocrat by birth, he was converted to Roman Catholicism. In 1836 the first of his Philosophical Letters
appeared in a Moscow journal. Its devastating attack on Russian institutions, such as autocracy, the church, and serfdom, created a sensation. Chaadayev was declared insane and was confined to his home. His vigorous writings helped clarify the basic differences between the Slavophiles and Westernizers
See his major works, ed. by R. T. McNally (1969); study by R. T. McNally (1971).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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