Sushko Aleksey

Nikolai Tsikura, the first new martyr of Omsk: an investigation of the murder of the member of the church at the beginning of the Civil war in Russia

Sushko Aleksey (2022) "Nikolai Tsikura, the first new martyr of Omsk: an investigation of the murder of the member of the church at the beginning of the Civil war in Russia ", Vestnik Pravoslavnogo Sviato-Tikhonovskogo gumanitarnogo universiteta. Seriia II : Istoriia. Istoriia Russkoy Pravoslavnoy Tserkvi, 2022, vol. 105, pp. 111-123 (in Russian).

DOI of the paper: 10.15382/sturII2022105.111-123


The article analyzes the events in Omsk on February 15-22, 1918, when an attempt by the regional Soviet authorities to implement the "Decree on the separation of church from state and school from church" led to riots in, Soviet historiography called the "priest's rebellion". In the course of these events, the novice and housekeeper of the bishop's house, Nikolai Tsikura, was killed and later canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church. The aim of the work is to analyze the circumstances of the death of Nikolai Tsikura in the context of the events of the Civil War that broke out in Russia. Along with published reports in periodicals and published and unpublished memoirs, one of the key evidence of the topic under consideration is the act record of the death of Nikolai Tsikura, stored in the Historical Archive of the Omsk Region. The article introduces into scientific circulation a brief description of the personality of Nikolai Tsikura, given to him in connection with the events of the “priest’s rebellion” in the memoirs of Omskovite M.A. Stolpovsky, who personally knew him. After analyzing two points of view on the cause of the murder of Nikolai Tsikura (he defended the bishop during the arrest or was killed for no apparent reason), the author notes the absence of a source that allows to unambiguously answer that question. When analyzing the circumstances of the death of Nikolai Tsikura, special attention is paid to the fact that the bells rang by killed priest triggered the mass unrest in Omsk, brought the people out into the streets who defended Bishop Sylvester and other arrested priests from possible reprisals and postponed for a month the implementation in Omsk of the “Decree on the separation of church from state and school from church.” It is emphasized that the canonization of Nikolai Tsikura in In 2000, continued the church tradition of venerating him as a holy new martyr started in 1918 at the Local Council of the Russian Orthodox Church.


Russian Orthodox Church, Russian revolution, Civil war in Russia, Omsk, priest's revolt, Nikolai Tsikura, Bishop Sylvester (Olshevsky), new martyrs and confessors.


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Information about the author

Sushko Aleksey

Academic Degree: Doctor of Sciences* in History;
Academic Rank: Professor;
Place of work: Omsk State Technical University; 11 Prosp. Mira, Omsk 644050, Russian Federation;
Post: professor, Department of history, philosophy and social communications;
ORCID: 0000-0002-6703-8535;
Email: alexsushko_1974@mail.ru.

*According to ISCED 2011, a post-doctoral degree called Doctor of Sciences (D.Sc.) is given to reflect second advanced research qualifications or higher doctorates.


The article was prepared with the support of the Russian Science Foundation project, 21-18-00266 "The religious factor in Russia during the Civil War: the phenomenon, significance and regional specificity", implemented at the St. Petersburg State University.