Boris Yefimov

Until recently, this remarkable centenarian, a diminutive figure in outsized spectacles, continued to enthral visitors to his Moscow flat, delivering colourful anecdotes of life from the first decades of the last century, displaying the vigour of a man half his age.

Few people can have experienced so much of 20th-century history at close quarters or, for that matter, possessed such dazzling capacity for its recollection.
During his lifetime Yefimov saw revolution, civil war, genocide, two world wars, the Cold War and a putsch. As a boy he saw the last Tsar, Nicholas II, and later he met Lenin. He personally knew many prominent revolutionaries, including Trotsky and Bukharin. He sat in the Great Hall of Columns as around him the show trials destroyed the lives of many former colleagues.

Interview with Boris Efimov


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