Petrograd was renamed Leningrad five days after Lenin’s death. In 1991, its name was reverted to the one it had in the Russian Empire – Saint Petersburg (Санкт-Петербург).
Petrograd was renamed Leningrad on this day in 1924. This occurred only five days after Lenin’s death, and was in line with the communist tendency of naming cities after their leaders (other examples include Ho Chi Minh City, and the former Stalingrad). The name was changed only in 1991, when the city was renamed Saint Petersburg.
It is interesting to examine the history of the city’s name. When the city was founded at the time of Peter the Great in 1793, the name was written as Sankt-Piter-Burh (Санкт-Питер-Бурх), but was later changed to Sankt-Petersburh (Санкт-Петерсбурх), and finally to Sankt-Peterburg (Санкт-Петербург, anglicized as Saint Petersburg). In 1914 the city was renamed Petrograd (Петроград), which was actually the Russian variant of its former name. As was mentioned, on this day in 1924 the city was renamed Leningrad, while the name it had in the Russian Empire was restored in 1991.
Saint Petersburg was the capital of Russia from 1712 until 1918, i.e. for over 200 years. Moscow was the capital before and after that time.