In Saxony and Austria, Bakunin had been treated as an accused person and tried and convicted by the oppressive, but formally correct, processes of the law. In Russia, his status was quite different. There he had been tried and sentenced in his absence, as long ago as 1844, to the loss of all rights and to hard labour in Siberia. He crossed the Russian frontier as a condemned criminal. This suffices to explain why the Peter-and-Paul fortress witnessed no repetition of the judicial farce which had been played out in Konigstein and in Olmütz. There was no place here for further trial or evidence. It only remained to apply an existing sentence. There was, however, no immediate intention of despatching Bakunin to Siberia. The will of the Tsar was above all law; and Nicholas I frequently preferred to regard important offences against the State as a personal issue between himself and the criminal. Bakunin was deposited in the fortress for an indefinite period to await the Imperial pleasure.
KeywordsHard Labour Prison Cell Free Federation Full Confession Mutual Hatred
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