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Leon Trotsky

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Trotsky's pen names and pseudonyms
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Leon Trotsky (bronze bust)

Leon Trotsky used a lot of pseudonyms, pen names and alias all his life, for various reasons (political persecution first by Czarist and later by Stalinist repression organs, living under illegal or half-legal conditions, factual prohibition of publishing and so on). He used those alias as writer, editor and contributor as well as in false passports.
The name 'Leon Trotsky' [Russian: Lev Trotskii, or Lev Davidovich Trotskii, cyrillic: Лев Давидович Троцкий] itself is a pseudonym which was adopted by young Lev Davidovich Bronshtein [cyrillic: Лев Давидович Бронштейн] — his real name by birth — when he had to put a name into a falsified passport which he needed to escape from his first Siberian banishment in 1902. By the way, it was said that 'Trotsky' [Троцкий] was simply the name of one of his prison guards in Odessa.
After the October Revolution, for legal or citizen requirements (in order not to oblige his sons who had the name of her mother [Trotsky's companion N.I. Sedova], i.e. Sedov, to change their names, Trotsky officially took the name of his companion, i.e. Lev Davidovich Sedov. However, this change of name obviously was a pure technical matter; thus, Trotsky, so far as we know, neither published nor signed any document using his passport name 'Sedov'.
Trotsky's [Bronshtein's] pseudonyms are listed here alphabetically with some occasional comments. Most of these pseudonyms were used only sporadically, during certain periods of his life, while others were used in earlier as well as in later years. Many pen names were used by Trotsky only in correspondence but not in published items, others were used exclusively in internal bulletins of the Left Opposition movement.
Please note that variant forms of spelling (e.g. as a result from different transliterations of Russian cyrillic characters) are not listed in the following table but in a separate list below.
Occasionally, Trotsky used the names of some his secretaries when signing certain documents (e.g. letters) during his final exile period (Turkey, [1929-1933], France, [1933-1935], Norway [1935-1936], and Mexico [1937-1940]); below you find a list of Trotsky's secretaries (1929-1940).
For some general explanations with regard to pseudonyms, name authority files and related issues see our introductory notes to the Name files chapter of TrotskyanaNet.

List of Trotsky's pen names, pseudonyms, etc.

Pseudonym, acronym,
alias, pen name
Comments (occasionally)
A.
Abel ca. 1939
A.Breton & D.Rivera 1938
Al'fa Til 1917 as well as during exile, 1930s, e.g. in contributions to  Biulleten' Oppozitsii
Alpha Til 1917 as well as during exile, 1930s, e.g. in contributions to  Biulleten' Oppozitsii
Anton  
Antid Oto during his first banishment to Sibera, 1900-1902, e.g. as contributor to Vostochnoe Obozrenie and Iskra; occasionally also used in later years, e.g. as contributor to Kievskaia Mysl' [ps. means antidote, counterpoison]
A.O. short for Antid Oto
Arbuzov in Kiev, 1905
Aslan David-Ogly Trotskyist captives in Stalin's prison camps occasionally refered to Trotsky as Aslan David-Ogly [Aslan meaning 'lion' and David-Ogly meaning son of David]
B  
Bernie  
Clave  
Cornell during last year of Mexican exile. Charles Cornell (1911-1989) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from June 1939 - Aug. 1940)
Cr. short for Crux
Crux during exile, 1933-1940, chiefly in internal bulletins and the like
D.  
Dae  
D.Rivera 1938
Ds.  
En 1916
Etienne during exile, 1930s
G. during exile, 1930s, short for Gurov, Gourov ...
G--- during exile, 1930s, short for Gurov, Gourov ...
G.G. during exile, 1930s, short for Gurov, Gourov ...
G.Gourov during exile, 1930s
G.Guroff during exile, 1930s
G.Gurov during exile, 1930s
G.Gurow during exile, 1930s
Hansen during last years of Mexican exile. Joseph Hansen (1910-1979) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Oct. 1937 - Jan. 1939, from Oct. 1939 - Jan. 1940 and from June - Aug. 1940)
I.Ianovskii as member of the St. Peterburg Soviet of Workers' Deputies, 1905
I.S. during exile, 1930s, in internal documents. I.S. = International Secretariat
Ja.G. in Biulleten' oppozitsii
J.Hansen during last years of Mexican exile. Joseph Hansen (1910-1979) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Oct. 1937 - Jan. 1939, from Oct. 1939 - Jan. 1940 and from June - Aug. 1940)
Joe Hansen during last years of Mexican exile. Joseph Hansen (1910-1979) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Oct. 1937 - Jan. 1939, from Oct. 1939 - Jan. 1940 and from June - Aug. 1940)
Joseph Hansen during last years of Mexican exile. Joseph Hansen (1910-1979) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Oct. 1937 - Jan. 1939, from Oct. 1939 - Jan. 1940 and from June - Aug. 1940)
K. during exile, 1930s, e.g. in Biulleten' oppozitsii. Short for Kruks
Kh. during exile, from 1929, e.g. in Biulleten' oppozitsii and in internal documents
Kruks during exile, 1933-1940, e.g. in Biulleten' oppozitsii and in internal documents
Kuznenko  
L.Amago 1938
L.D. short for Lev Davidovich ...
L.D.Trotskii  
Lee  
Leo  
Leon  
Leon Davidovich  
Léon Sedov name of his son [Lev L'vovich Sedov]
Leo N.Trotskii  
Lev Davidovich Sedov name in his passport, after 1917
Lev N.Trotskii 1917
Level Léon Lanis in faked French passport 1934
L.Ianov ?
L.Ianovskii [see I. Ianovskii]
Linier  
Liud  
L.N.  
L.N.T. before 1917
L.Sedov name of his son [Lev L'vovich Sedov]
L.T. short for Lev Trotskii, Leon Trotsky ...
Lund during exile, 1930s
L.Vladimirov  
Lvov as pamphletist in Nikolaev and Odessa, ca. 1897
M.  
Marcel  
Meunier 1930s
M.N.  
M.Puntervold Michael Puntervold (1879-1937) was Trotsky's lawyer during exile in Norway
M.Sedov name of his son [Lev L'vovich Sedov]
N.  
Neofit 1907
Ni--dim  
Nikolai 1928
N.I.Trotskii 1904-1917
N.N. during exile, 1930s, e.g. in Biulleten' oppozitsii
Non-Pacifist  
N.T. [also: n.t.]
N.Takhotskii in prison, 1906
N.T--kii short for N. Trotskii
N.Trotskii 1903 - 1918. [Also: N.T. ; n.t. ; T-skii]
N.Trotsky til 1917
O'Brien during last years of Mexican exile. Vaughan Thomas O'Brien (1910-1995) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Sept. 1938 - Sept. 1939)
Old Man during exile, 1930s, used in correspondence
O.M. short for Old Man
Onken during exile, 1930s, used in correspondence
Opmerker  
Ot redaktsii used on and on
Pama  
Papa  
Paul  
Pero during his first banishment to Siberia, 1900-1902 and as member of the Iskra team [Pero = pen, feather]
Petr Aleksandrov  
Petr Petrovich in St. Peterburg, 1905
Piochitas  
Postoronii  
P.Tanas in prison, July 1917
Red. short for Redaktsiia [=editorial board]. Used on an on
Redaktsiia used on and on
Rork during last years of Mexican exile, 1939-1940, e.g. in internal documents. Walter Ketley (aka Rork, Rourke, O'Rourke,) (1917[?]-1990[?]) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Dec. 1939 - Aug. 1940)
R.Ruskin  
Samokovliev in a false passport, used for travel to London, 1902
S.I. S.I. = Secrétariat International
Ss.  
Starik (meaning "old man") during exile, 1930s, used in correspondence
Sympathizer  
T. short for Trotskii, e.g. in Biulleten' oppozitsii
Tarov during exile, 1930s, in Biulleten' oppozitsii
T--ii short for Trotskii
T--skii short for Trotskii
T.Vaughan during last years of Mexican exile. Vaughan Thomas O'Brien (1910-1995) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Sept. 1938 - Sept. 1939)
Uncle Leo(n) during exile, 1930s, in correspondence
V. during exile, 1930s, in correspondence
Van during exile, 1930s, in correspondence. Van = nickname of Jean VanHeijenoort (1912-1986), one of Trotsky's secretaries during his exile in Turkey, France, Norway and Mexico (from Oct. 1932 - Sept. 1936 and from Jan. 1937 - Nov. 1939)
Vérité  
Vidal 1934-1935
Vikentev in St. Peterburg, 1905
Vivos Voco  
Vremenno-obiazannyi  
V.T.O. during last years of Mexican exile. Vaughan Thomas O'Brien (1910-1995) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Sept. 1938 - Sept. 1939)
V.T.O'Brien during last years of Mexican exile. Vaughan Thomas O'Brien (1910-1995) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Sept. 1938 - Sept. 1939)
V.Vern during exile, 1930s, e.g. in internal documents
Wolfe during last years of Mexican exile, e.g. in 1937. Bernard Wolfe (1915-1985) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Jan.-Aug. 1937)
W.R. during last years of Mexican exile, 1939-1940, e.g. in internal documents. Walter Ketley (aka Rork, Rourke, O'Rourke,) (1917[?]-1990[?]) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Dec. 1939 - Aug. 1940)
W.Rork during last years of Mexican exile, 1939-1940, e.g. in internal documents. Walter Ketley (aka Rork, Rourke, O'Rourke,) (1917[?]-1990[?]) was one of Trotsky's secretaries and guards in Coyoacán (from Dec. 1939 - Aug. 1940)
--X 1930s
Yan Yanovskii [see I. Ianovskii]
Your Old Man during exile, 1930s, used in correspondence

List of various forms of Trotsky's names

The following is a - probably not at all complete - alphabetically arranged list of the various forms (varying with regard to spelling, transliteration and completeness) of Trotsky's name (his adopted name as well as his real name by birth) as appearing in library catalogues, name authority files, encyclopaedias, book covers, passports, passenger lists, etc.:

Bronschtein, Leib
Bronshtein, Leiba Davidovich
Bronshtein, Lev Davidovich
Bronştayn, Leon Davidoviç
Bronstein, Leib
Bronštein, Leib Davidovitš
Bronstein, Leiba
Bronstein, Leo
Bronstein, Leo D.
Bronstein, Léon
Bronstein, Lev Davidovič
Bronstein, Lev Davidoviĉ
Bronstein, Lev Davidovich
Bronstein, Lev Davidovici
Bronstein, Lev Davidovitj
Bronstein, Lev Davidovitš
Bronstein, Lev Davidovitsj
Bronstein, Lew Dawidowitsch
Bronstein, Liev Davidovich
Bronsteinas, Levas Davidovičius
Bronštejn, Lejb
Bronštejn, Lev
Bronštejn, Lev D.
Bronštejn, Lev Davidovivič
Sedov, Lev Davidovič
Tachockij, L.
T'o-lo-ssu-chi
T'o-lo-tz'u-chi
Torokki
Torotsuki
Torotsukii
Trocki, Lav
Trocki, Lev
Troçki, Lev
Troçki, Lev Davidoviç
Trocki, Lew Dawidowicz
Trockii, L.
Trockij, L.
Trockij, L.D.
Trockij, Leo
Trockij, Lev
Trockij, Lev Davidovič
Trockij, Lev Davydovič
Trockij, Lev Davidovics
Trockij, N.
Trockis, Levas Davidovičius
Trockis, Leo
Troc'kyj, Lev Davydovyč
Trocký, Lev Davidovič
Troţki, Lev Davidovici
Trotski, Leão
Trotski, Leo
Trotski, Leon
Trotski, Léon
Trôtski, Lêông
Trôtki, Lép
Trotski, Lev Davidovitš
Trotski, Lev Davydovitch
Trotski, Lew
Trotski, Liev
Trotskii, Lev
Trotskii, Lev D.
Trotskii, Lev Davidovich
Trotskii, N.
Trotskij, Leo
Trotskij, Lev Davidovitj
Trotsky, L.
Trotsky, L.D.
Trotsky, Leon
Trotsky, Léon
Trotsky, León
Trotsky, Leon D.
Trotsky, Leon Davidovich
Trôtxki, Lép
Trotzki, L.
Trotzki, Leo
Trotzki, Leo D.
Trotzki, Leo Davydovič
Trotzki, Leo Dawidowitsch
Trotzki, Leo N.
Trotzki, Lev
Trotzki, Lev D.
Trotzki, Lev Davidovič
Trotzki, Lev Davydovič
Trotzki, Lew D.
Trotzki, Lew Dawidowitsch
Trotzkij, L.
Trotzkij, Leo
Trotzkij, Leo D.
Trotzkij, Leo Dawidowitsch
Trotzky, Leo
Trotzky, Leo N.
Trotzky, Leon
Trotzky, Lev
Trotzky, Lev D.
Trotzky, N.
Trozki, Lew D.
Zratsky, Leon

Full Cyrillic form (Russian, not Yiddish variant!) of Trotsky's adopted name and name by birth:

Лев Давидович Троцкий
Лев Давидович Бронштейн

Note: For further forms of name and pseudonyms (in Greek, Turkish, Arabic, Farsi, Chinese, Japanese etc.) see
VIAF ID 19685134 [VIAF=Virtual International Authority File]


List of Trotsky's secretaries during the exile period from 1929 to 1940

When signing documents (e.g. letters), Trotsky occasionally used, as mentioned above, the names (or, pseudonyms, or, nick names) of men and women who functioned as secretaries to him during his final exile period; countries of exile were: Turkey (1929-1933), France (1933-1935), Norway (1935-1936), and Mexico (1937-1940).
What follows is an alphabetical list of Trotsky's secretaries from 1929 to 1940; a red asterisk (*) behind a secretary's name means that a biographical sketch of the respective person is provided within TrotskyanaNet's Bio-Bibliographies chapter. List of Leon Trotsky's secretaries

Wolfgang and Petra Lubitz, Aug. 2004
last rev. June 2016
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