THE Russian revolutionary movement, as I indicated at the commencement of my introduction, was the result of the examples and ideas developed in Western Europe, acting upon the minds of the youth of Russia, who owing to the condition of the country were predisposed to accept them with the utmost favour.
I have now to trace out separately the true influences that determined this result, and their respective courses, as in the case of a great river, of which we know the source and the mouth, without knowing either its precise course, or the affluents that have given it such volume.
The influence of Europe is very easy to investigate, its course being so simple and elementary. The communion of ideas between Russia and Europe has never been interrupted, notwithstanding all the preventive measures of the censorship. Prohibited books like the works of Proudhon, Fourier, Owen, and other old Socialists, were always secretly introduced into Russia, even under the Asiatically ferocious and suspicious despotism of Nicholas I.