The Baltic Physician in Harbin: Baron R. A. Budberg - a Medic, a Biologist, a Realist, a Mystic, and a Dreamer

Pavel E. Ratmanov, Yan Liu, Fengmin Zhang, Leonid P. Churilov

Research output


The aim of this paper is to introduce the biography of R. A. Budberg to the Russian-speaking audience, as well as the study of its activities from a point of view of the history of medicine. The article focus on his scientific and medical activity before 1904, the epidemic of the pneumonic plague in Harbin in 1910-1911, as well as the last years of his life (1921-1926). After the graduation from the Yurev University in 1895 he completed a specialization in obstetrics and gynecology Then he published scientific articles in Russian and German medical journals on surgery and obstetrics. After the Russo-Japanese War R. A. Budberg spent 20 years in Harbin, where he worked in the Chinese Eastern Railway. lie was married to a Chinese woman, he knew Chinese, and these circumstances contributed to improving Russian-Chinese relations. During the fight against epidemics of the pneumonic plague in Harbin, he advocated respect for the customs and traditions of the Chinese population. In 1921, after the transfer of power in Harbin to the Chinese, R. A. Budberg was appointed a chief physician of the Harbin Police Department, granting him the right to perform a medical inspection. But due to his of disagreements with the Chinese authorities, he quickly left this post, but remained prison doctor of Harbin. Opposite to the previous studies of the life of R. A. Budberg, based on his own writings, this publication attempts to present the view of the Russian public in Harbin on the life of the German baron with Russian citizenship in the Chinese city on the basis of the data of the Russian-language periodical in Harbin.

Original languageRussian
Pages (from-to)47-63
Number of pages17
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019
EventWu Lien-Teh Forum. The 5th China-Russia International Conference on Microbiology, Immunology and Related Diseases - Harbin Medical University, Harbin
Duration: 23 Jan 201725 Jan 2018
Conference number: 5

Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)

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