Timeline of the Russian Revolutions: 1905

Bloody Sunday in St. Petersburg
Bloody Sunday in St. Petersburg.

Imperial War Museum/Wikimedia Commons

While Russia had a revolution in 1917 (in fact two), it nearly had one in 1905. There were the same marches and vast strikes, but in 1905 the revolution was crushed in a manner that affected how things unraveled in 1917 (including a great deal of fear things would repeat and a new revolution would fail). What was the difference? World War One had not acted as a magnifying glass for problems, and the military mostly stayed loyal.


• January 3-8: 120,000 workers strike in St. Petersburg; government warns against any organized marches.

• January 9: Bloody Sunday. 150,000 striking workers and their families march through St. Petersburg to deliver a protest to the Tsar but are shot and ridden down on multiple occasions by the army.

• Reaction to the massacre spreads across neighboring regions, especially the industrial centers which experience spontaneous workers' strikes.


• February: The strike movement spreads down to the Caucasus.

• February 4: Grand-Duke Sergei Alexandrovich is killed by an SR assassin as protests grow.

• February 6: Notably large rural disorder, especially in Kursk.

• February 18: Reacting to the growing troubles, Nicholas II orders the creation of a consultative assembly to report on constitutional reform; the move is less than the revolutionaries want, but it gives them impetus.


• The strike movement and unrest reaches Siberia and the Urals.


• April 2: The second National Congress of Zemstvos again demands a constitutional assembly; the Union of Unions formed.


• Embarrassment for the government as the Baltic Fleet is easily sunk, having spent 7 months sailing round to Japan.


• June: Soldiers used against strikers in Lodz.

• June 18: Odessa is halted by a large strike.

• June 14-24: Sailors mutiny on the Battleship Potemkin.


• August: Moscow holds the first Conference of the Peasants union; Nizhnii holds the First Congress of the Muslim Union, one of many groups pushing for regional - often national - autonomy.

• August 6: Tsar issues a manifesto on the creation of a state Duma; this plan, created by Bulygin and nicknamed the Bulygin Duma, is rejected by revolutionaries for being too weak and having a tiny electorate.

• August 23: Treaty of Portsmouth ends the Russo-Japanese war; Russia has been beaten by an opponent they were expected to easily defeat.


• September 23: Printers strike in Moscow, the start of Russia's first General Strike.


• October 1905 - July 1906: The Peasant Union of the Volokolamsk District creates the independent Markovo Republic; it survives, 80 miles from Moscow, until the government crushes it in July 1906.

• October 6: Rail workers join the strike.

• October 9: As telegraph workers join the strike, Witte warns the Tsar that to save Russia he must make great reforms or impose a dictatorship.

• October 12: Strike action has developed into a General Strike.

• October 13: A council is formed to represent striking workers: the St. Petersburg Soviet of Workers Deputies; it functions as an alternative government. The Mensheviks dominate it as the Bolsheviks boycott and similar soviets are soon created in other cities.

• October 17: Nicholas II issues the October Manifesto, a liberal scheme proposed by Witte. It grants civil liberties, the need for Duma consent before passing laws and a widening of the Duma electorate to include all Russians; mass celebrations follow; political parties form and rebels return, but acceptance of the Manifesto pushes the liberals and socialists apart. The St. Petersburg soviet prints its first issue of the newssheet Izvestia; left and right groups clash in streetfights.

• October: Lvov joins the Constitutional Democrat (Kadet) party, which includes the more radical zemstvo menmen, nobles, and scholars; conservative liberals form the Octobrist Party. These are the people who have led the revolution so far.

• October 18: N. E. Bauman, a Bolshevik activist, is killed during a streetfight triggering a street war between the Tsar supporting right and the revolutionary left.

• October 19: The Council of Ministers is created, a government cabinet under Witte; leading Kadets are offered posts, but refuse.

• October 20: Bauman's funeral is the focus of major demonstrations and violence.

• October 21: The General Strike is ended by the St. Petersburg Soviet.

• October 26-27: The Kronstadt mutiny.

• October 30-31: The Vladivostok Mutiny.


• November 6-12: The Peasants Union holds a conference in Moscow, demanding a constituent assembly, land redistribution and political union between peasants and urban workers.

• November 8: The Union of Russian People is created by Dubrovin. This early fascist group aims to fight against the left and is funded by government officials.

• November 14: The Moscow branch of the Peasants Union is arrested by the government.

• November 16: Telephone/graph workers strike.

• November 24: Tsar introduces 'Provisional Rules', which at once abolish some aspects of censorship, but introduce harsher penalties for those praising 'criminal acts'.

• November 26: Head of the St. Petersburg Soviet, Khrustalev-Nosar, arrested.

• November 27: The St. Petersburg Soviet appeals to the armed forces and elects a triumvirate to replace Nosar; it includes Trotsky.


• December 3: The St. Petersburg Soviet is arrested en masse after Socialist Democrats (SD) hand out weapons.

• December 10-15: The Moscow Uprising, where rebels and militias try to take the city through armed struggle; it fails. No other major rebellions take place, but the Tsar and the right react: the police regime returns and the army sweeps across Russia crushing dissent.

• December 11: Russia's urban population and workers are enfranchised by electoral changes.

• December: Nicholas II and his son given honorary membership of the Union of the Russian People; they accept.

mla apa chicago
Your Citation
Wilde, Robert. "Timeline of the Russian Revolutions: 1905." ThoughtCo, Apr. 5, 2023, thoughtco.com/russian-revolutions-1905-1221816. Wilde, Robert. (2023, April 5). Timeline of the Russian Revolutions: 1905. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/russian-revolutions-1905-1221816 Wilde, Robert. "Timeline of the Russian Revolutions: 1905." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/russian-revolutions-1905-1221816 (accessed June 7, 2023).