Tuna 1/2012 157 S U M M A R Y
Eestlased Eestis 25 Mar 2012  TUNA
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David Vseviov. How to Recreate the Past?
The writer Andrei Hvostov begins his Sillamäe Passion
with the wish to take his son with him into the
“distant 1980’s” that he describes but abandons his
initial intention. He feels that his son would not be
capable of thoroughly perceiving what has been anyway,
including the atmosphere of fear that prevailed
in the Soviet Union at that time. Thus one can ask
on the basis of the writer’s works, to what extent can
the past be recreated? A good example of the extent
to which the past needs “deciphering” is J. Lotman’s
book of commentaries on the novel Jevgeni Onegin,
which contains a great many explanations, without
which the living conditions of the first quarter of the
19th century would be incomprehensible. A certain
amount of objective loss is inevitably encoded in the
writing of history, in other words, the restoration of
events of the past. This, however, means that the claim
to represent historical truth can be justified only in
the most general framework, leaving freedom for all
manner of conjecture in the details.


Liisi Taimre. Concerning Swedish-Russian Relations
in Correspondence between the Governor of Ingria
and Russian Voivodes in the 1630’s
This article examines the reverberation of Swedish-
Russian relations in correspondence between
the Governor of Ingria and the voivodes of Pskov
and Novgorod in the 1630’s. The policy of Sweden’s
central authorities in the 1630’s was to cultivate good
relations with Russia, both for diplomatic reasons
– with the aim of eliminating Poland’s ambitions of
establishing itself as a great power – and with the
objective of developing commerce oriented towards
the East. A decision by the Swedish Diet or a ukase
from the tsar alone was not enough to ensure good
Responsibility for the functioning of good relations
at the local level lay primarily with the Governor
of Ingria – Nils Asserson Mannersköld filled this
post during the period under consideration – and his
Russian colleagues, the voivodes of Novgorod and
Pskov. They had to resolve various disagreements
associated with the border and cooperate in regard to
the extradition of fugitives. Sweden’s central authorities
were interested first and foremost in as friendly
relations with Moscow as possible. Getting along well
was more important than justice in interaction with
voivodes. The Governor of Ingria had to stand up
for the interests of the Swedish state and its subjects
on the one hand, but above all not to allow disagreements
to swell to excessive proportions.
While the work of the governors (general) of the
Swedish state is ordinarily considered by focusing on
the administrative reforms and reorganisations that
they implemented within their respective provinces,
the relationship between the Governor of Ingria and
the Russian voivodes is a good example of the tasks
of the governor (general) of a more non-standard
nature that derived from the unique characteristics
of the province and the broader aims of the central
authorities during the particular period.

Marge Rennit. The Life of a Tutor in Estonia. Johann

Joachim Bellermann’s Travelogue from 1781
German theologian and semitologist Johann Joachim
Bellermann was born in the city of Thüringen in Erfurt
in 1754 and died in Berlin in 1842. Bellermann studied
philosophy and theology at the University of Erfurt
in 1772–1775. He continued his studies in classical
philology, theology, and oriental sciences at the University
of Göttingen in 1775. He left the university in
the spring of 1778 two years after passing the clerical
candidate examination in Erfurt. His wish to travel and
see the world influenced the 23-year-old young man to
accept a job as a tutor in Estonia. He served as tutor
at the Kloodi Estate near Rakvere, which belonged to
Baron Clodt von Jürgensburg, from St. John’s Day in
1778 to midsummer of 1781. Thereafter, he spent six
months in St. Petersburg. Bellermann went back to his
homeland in January of 1782. He earned a master’s
degree at Erfurt in 1783. His academic career at the
University of Erfurt progressed continually from success
to success thereafter – he was appointed professor
extraordinary of philosophy in 1784, professor in
ordinary of theology in 1790, and professor in ordinary
at the Faculty of Philosophy in 1801.

One further episode in Bellermann’s life was associated
with Estonia, this time with Tartu. He applied
for a position at the University of Tartu as professor
in ordinary of ecclesiastical history and theological
literature in 1803. His application was approved and
his name was included in the register of lectures for
the 1803 autumn semester. His plan to go to work
at the University of Tartu was foiled by the Berlin
magistrate’s proposal to take the job of headmaster
of the Berlin-Cölln Grammar School. From that point
onward, he was connected to Tartu through his communication
with the professors at the university.
Bellermann’s travelogue on Russia was published
in 1788 in Erfurt as a two-part edition. The 12 letters
Bellermann sent to his friend from St. Petersburg
from August to October of 1781 are published in
the first part.

The aim of this article is to introduce Bellermann’s
description of his journey from Estonia to
St. Petersburg that took place in August of 1781.
Bellermann’s travelogue is the direct reflection of
conditions in Estonia written by a young, educated
German who had lived in Estonia for three years.
158 Tuna 1/2012
Summary 1/2012

The author’s good sense of humour in describing
what he has seen makes Bellermann’s travelogue likeable.
Unlike customary practice, where the travelogue
author has described the Baltic provinces on the basis
of a more or less cursory trip passing through them
and opinion shaped by literature that the author
has perused in advance, Bellermann’s experience of
Estonia was considerably longer and more thorough.
Bellerman’s assessments are often given by way of
comparisons with other countries. He has compared
conditions in Estonia primarily with conditions in
Germany that he was very familiar with.
Heino Arumäe. Common Traits and Differences in
Estonian and Finnish Foreign Policy III
This is the third part of an article that considers only
one aspect of Estonian-Finnish relations, namely security
policy considerations and attempts at political
and military cooperation in 1919–1922. It is a generally
known fact that Estonia received diverse forms of assistance
from Finland during the years of the Estonian
War of Independence in 1918–1920 and that Estonians
hoped that Estonia and Finland would be close allies
in the future as well. This article analyses what kinds
of factors influenced the fact that the active attempts
of Estonia’s political and military leadership to work
more closely with Finland did not achieve significant
results. Read more about this topic in TUNA no. 3,
2011, pp.34-50, TUNA no. 4, 2011 pp. 17-32, and the
Summary in English, TUNA no. 3, pp.157-158.
Jaak Valge. London, Berlin, Moscow and Estonia’s
Coup of 1934
The coup that took place in Estonia on 12 March
1934, which also meant the loss of democracy for
Estonia, was a sharp conflict between internal forces
in Estonia. Yet the force fields of the interests of three
great powers – the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom,
and Germany – also intersected in Estonia. The
communist Soviet Union, with a population 150 times
larger than that of Estonia, and Nazi Germany, with a
population 60 times larger than Estonia’s, were considered
threats to security in Estonia. The democratic
United Kingdom, on the other hand, was considered
Estonia’s greatest friend and influential supporter.
This article considers the attitudes and actions of
these three great powers in 1933 and 1934.
The United Kingdom had practically no interest
whatsoever in influencing Estonian domestic politics
and it is a known fact that it did not make a single attempt
to do so. The reason for this was the low priority
of the Baltic region in London’s view. London was primarily
interested in restraining Germany’s influence
in the Baltic region and in Estonia’s domestic conditions
only as far as they related to that background.
Information concerning Estonia was deficient and
policymakers in London most likely believed for some
time prior to and after the coup that the members of
the movement of veterans of Estonia’s war of independence
had close connections to Germany’s Nazis,
and Konstantin Päts and Johan Laidoner carried out
the coup to prevent them from taking power.
The limited steps taken by the Soviet Union’s
People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs aimed
at supporting Päts in the election for Head of State
turned out to be ineffective and were implemented
too late, and thus did not improve Päts’s chances to
any significant degree. Economic leverage was not
used. The Estonian Communist Party was a zombie
organisation, which was a subordinate branch of the
Comintern, which was in turn directed by the Kremlin.
At best, the Estonian Communist Party could
perhaps destabilise Estonia’s domestic politics, but it
could not direct it. The cooperation of Estonian socialists
with Moscow doubtless exacerbated Estonia’s
domestic political situation but not decisively. Thus
the Soviet Union’s interference was not determinative
in Estonia’s loss of democracy.
Even though there is less certainty concerning
Berlin’s policy due to a lack of available information,
it appears that Germany’s attempts to influence Estonia’s
domestic politics in its preferred direction were
also limited in scope. Similarly to the Soviet Union,
Germany’s options were limited because Germany
was also seen as a threat to security in Estonia, and
Germany’s threats or obvious attempts at “positive
involvement” could have disposed the people against
pro-German politicians altogether. In summary, the
article concludes that the coup of 1934 was the result
of Estonia’s domestic political processes.
Astri Schönfelder. “Would you mind if I wrote to you
in Estonian?” Friedrich Akel’s Letters to his Future
Wife Adele Tenz from the Years 1903–1905
In the autumn of 1903, a young eye doctor in Tallinn
named Friedrich Karl Akel began corresponding
with a young woman in Tartu named Adele Tenz
(1884–1944). Even though they wrote mostly in German,
they discussed many themes that were current
and important for the emerging Estonian public,
like Germanisation, the espousal of the Estonian
language and identity, and the inculcation of a new
nationalist attitude among educated Estonian women
representing the middle classes. As is typical in private
letters, real life, traditions and values of that era are
intertwined, reflecting current social and political
topics of the day on the background of the personal
world of ideas from private life. The young doctor’s
love letters provide not only insights into the cultural
history of the beginning of the 20th century, they also
mark moments of espousal of nationalist self-awareness
on an individual level and are thus a small part
Tuna 1/2012 159
Summary 1/2012

of the history of the evolution of Estonian-speaking
society and of the Estonian nationality towards statehood.
Letters sent from the Russian-Japanese War
also provide interesting descriptions of episodes that
have thus far attracted less attention – Fr. Akel was
conscripted at the beginning of 1904 as a junior chief
physician and assigned to the 4th rear area hospital in
the city of Nikolski in Primorje krai. These letters tell
about the life of a doctor in the rear area and they
paint a rather brightly coloured cheerful picture. War
enthusiasm starts dying down in the spring of 1905,
the hospitals stand empty and the doctors have no
work. The last surviving letter from the Russian-Japanese
War was mailed on 13 October 1905. Friedrich
Akel and Adele Tenz were married in March of 1906.
Fr. Akel became Head of State of Estonia (1924) and
served as minister of foreign affairs on several occasions.
He served as ambassador to Finland, Sweden
and Germany. Alongside his public work that began
in 1897 already, when he served as chairman of the
Estonian University Students’ Association (EÜS),
and grew to be quite extensive, Fr. Akel also managed
to open his own eye clinic (1912) and to direct the
creation of a professional organisation of Estonian
physicians. Fr. Akel wrote to Tenz about the need to
work in this direction back in 1905 already.
Fr. Akel was arrested on 17 October 1940 and
executed on 3 July 1941. Adele Akel was deported
in 1941 to Kirov oblast, where she died in 1944. Of
their four children, their daughters Vilma Akel and
Liia, who married Swedish diplomat Erik von Sydow,
escaped to Sweden. It is probably Vilma Akel who
succeeded in taking along her father’s collection of
rare bibles and among other isolated documents his
letters to his future wife as well as she was fleeing.
These letters were returned to Estonia thanks to
Fr. Akel’s daughter’s son Douglas von Sydow, who
gave the documents to the Estonian national archives
as a gift in 2010. The archive “Collection of Friedrich
Karl Akel’s family documents” (ERA.5041) was
formed from these materials. Of the 182 letters that
Fr. Akel sent to Adele in 1903–1907, 16 letters have
been selected for publication, of which three are written
in Estonian. The collection does not have any of
the letters that Adele Tenz wrote to him in reply.
Arno Toomas Pihlak. Unexpected Encounters
Valdur Ohmann: Jaan Ikmelt, son of Jaan (1885–

Arno Toomas Pihlak describes in his memoirs how
he ended up in the GULAG archipelago as a political
prisoner. The contingent there was very diverse,
ranging from criminals to the editor of the communist
newspaper Pravda.
Jaan Ikmelt, one of the leading figures of the
Estonian communist movement, was among the
internees. He was caught in the gearwheels of the
Stalinist repressions at the end of the 1930’s.
There are certain discrepancies between the memoirs
and the archival material: data concerning Jaan
Ikmelt in the Communist Party archives are used
as the basis for commenting on the memoirs. Even
though Jaan Ikmelt claimed in the GULAG that
the reason for his imprisonment was the attempted
coup in Estonia in 1924, which Soviet Russia organised
in cooperation with Estonian communists, his
participation is not confirmed by this archival source.
Estonian communists in Soviet Russia were split.
Both opposing camps became victims of repression.
The attitudes of one individual or another could
also have been used as the basis for issuing charges
concerning the attempted coup of 1924.
In analysing the course of Jaan Ikmelt’s life, an
answer is sought to why his name was published in
some publications of historical literature during the
Soviet era. The reason was the attitudes of the heads
of different publications towards one or another
camp of the split Estonian communists.
Estonian Film Archives. Photographs of Tsar Niklolai
II from the Russian State Archives of Film and

David Carr. Experience and History
The purpose of this essay is to outline a distinctively
phenomenological approach to the nature of our
historical experience. It inquires into the experience
of historicity that characterises our everyday experiences
in the personalistic attitude. The personalistic
attitude characterises human experience in its
“natural” or naïve state, i.e., prior to its adoption
of theoretical interpretations and agendas deriving
from science, philosophy, or religion, including the
science of history.
The phenomenological description of our everyday
experience has shown that any phenomenon
is always experienced together with its spatial and
temporal fields. As any physical thing is always experienced
together with its spatial background that
extends indefinitely from its immediate surroundings,
similarly any timely event has its past and future
horizons that extend, however indistinctly for the
experiencing subject, towards indefinite times before
and after the current event. As Husserl has shown in
his analysis of melody, the past and future do not just
accompany the object that is already meaningfully
formed in experience, but they co-constitute its very
meaning; a note could be meaningful as a part of a
melody only if it stands out against the notes that
have already sounded and that we anticipate to sound
next. Thus the present phenomenon includes both its
past and future. What will occur may, of course, differ
160 Tuna 1/2012
Summary 1/2012

from what we expect and thus surprise us, but it could
not surprise us if we did not anticipate a more or less
definite future for what’s happening now.
Thus as we experience space by perceiving particular
things, we experience time by encountering
actual events that occur. Experiencing historicity
is one of the ways of experiencing time in the personalistic
attitude. Thus many cases of action in the
world of personalistic attitude are not individual but
collective actions, and these will involve shared past
and future horizons. The social world is made up not
only of overlapping pasts (and futures) belonging to
individuals but also of overlapping shared pasts (and
futures) belonging to groups and communities. The
temporality of the social world is thus very different
from the temporality of the naturalistic world, because
it involves the experienced time of subjects and
agents. Within the social world our contemporaries
are older and younger, and their lives and experiential
backgrounds may not completely overlap with my
own. In addition to the many other ways the social
world is structured and stratified, it is also divided
into generations, and this distinction turns out to be
crucial for our understanding of how the historical is
experienced. It is primarily in our encounter with older
people that the reality of the historical past is experienced,
just as our encounter with younger people opens
up a future that can be called historical as well.
We usually think of the historical past as the past
which extends beyond the reach of my direct experience,
and thus also beyond the reach of my memory
in the usual sense of this term. It includes, crucially
but not exclusively, what happened before my birth.
In the usual senses of both memory and experience,
there is no way that the time before my birth could
have been experienced or could be remembered by
me. Nevertheless the essay argues that, in the sense of
experience and social temporality that are developed
here, the historical past in just this sense does indeed
enter into our experience. Our experience now,
and the events we may experience now, constitute
a kind of core of presence (in the temporal sense)
standing out from a temporal background which is
the dual horizon of retention and protention. Like
the elapsed and prospective notes of the melody I
hear, this horizon contributes to the significance of
the present.
What is more, non-human aspects of the human
world have their own temporality. The built environment
of our towns and cities reveals the same temporal
extension, this time overlaid with the plans and
projects of those who built them. Houses and streets,
cities and their configurations and traffic patterns,
their neighbourhoods and landmarks, have their
own sort of pasts that are part of what they are as I
experience them. The time-scale that extends back
before our birth is given in our experience not only of
the persons and the built and natural environments
that make up the human world; it is present also in
the institutions and practices, rules and regulations
that govern our social existence. Some of these derive
from legal and collective actions or decisions, others
simply grow up as human practices and customs. In
either case they belong to the fabric of our social
world that is given to us together with its own set of
historical temporalities. The experience of the historical
thus involves the awareness of the temporality
of the persons, things—natural things and artefacts
– social organisations, institutions and practices that
surround us in the human world, a temporality that
extends beyond the limits of our own life span.
Interview with David Carr by Marek Tamm and
Tõnu Viik
Eve Annuk. Correspondence between Betti Alver and
Mart Lepik in 1956
The correspondence between poetess Betti Alver
(1906–1989) and historian of literature Mart Lepik
(1900–1971), which began in 1947 and lasted until
1962, is valuable source material from the point of
view of personal history as well as in terms of the
context of the era. The correspondence brings to
light the creative work of Betti Alver as a poetess
and the work of Mart Lepik as a scholar of literature
in the post-war years, as well as their personal
relationship. Betti Alver could not publish her work
in the 1940’s and 1950’s due to Stalinist repressions
– she was expelled from the Estonian SSR Writers’
Union in 1950 along with several other writers who
had fallen out of favour with the Soviet regime – and
she was forced to work on translations, translating
the works of Russian authors into Estonian as well
as translating the works of writers from world literature
and Estonian authors. Betti Alver succeeded
with the help of historian of literature Mart Lepik
in getting work for translating Fr. R. Kreutzwald’s
correspondence from German into Estonian. Mart
Lepik’s research work happened to be focused on
the earlier period of Estonian literature. As an
employee of the museum of literature, he had the
opportunity to carry out research work in archives
located in Russia. The published excerpt reflects correspondence
from 1956, which was a turning point
in a certain sense for Betti Alver as a poet because
she was accepted back as a member of the Writers’
Union and her translation of the first chapter of
A. S. Puškin’s Jevgeni Onegin was published in the
literary publication entitled Looming. Betti Alver and
Mart Lepik also got married in the same year.
Their correspondence often depicts the ideological
context of the post-war years only in passing by
implication, creating as a source a fragmentary view
of the era.
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