Born in Saratov district, 31 August 1749. Family was wellto-do, cultured, " progressive" . Educated first at home, then sent to relatives in Moscow, 1756. Page in Imperial household, 1762, followed Court to St Petersburg, 1764. Sent as part of select group to study law in Leipzig, 1767-71. Joined Masonic lodge "Urania" and the English Club, 1773. Entered College of Commerce, 1777; assistant director of Customs and Excise Department, 1780; director in 1790. Stripped of rank, title, privileges and arrested for sedition by Catherine II for the publication of Puteshestvie iz Peterburga v Moskvu (A Journey from St Petersburg to Moscow), 1790. Death sentence commuted to Siberian exile, 1790. Permitted move to Kaluga, 1797; remained in exile at Nemtsovo until 1801. Commited suicide, 24 September 1802.