Nicholas Berdyaev was born in 1874 in Kiev, the cradle of Russian Christian culture. He was a scion of an aristocratic family, but while studying in Kiev, came under the influence of the writings of Kant and Hegel. While Hegel himself drew conservative conclusions from his own system, Karl Marx drew revolutionary conclusions, and the young Berdyaev followed Marx and the early Communists. Expelled from the University for these Marxist leanings, he found himself in exile in the north in company with some of the founders of Russian Communism. Yet all through his life he remained an independent and a rebel. Although he accepted the economic and political conclusions of Marxism, he rejected the dialectical materialism on which they were supposedly based, and as a result he was again exiled in 1922, this time by the Communists, after he had served as professor of philosophy in Moscow University. Most of the rest of his life was spent in exile in Paris, with the little group of Russian emigrés, but as he remained true to the Marxian analysis and critique of capitalism to the end of his days, and loathed the bourgeois order of society as cordially as any disciple of Lenin, he was naturally in little favour with them. He died there on 24th March 1948 at his writing table.