Had she ever been married? Or had kids? Was she really a mistress of Lenin, Mussolini, Trotsky and Stalin? Was Edda Mussolini, the eldest daughter of the infamous dictator, her daughter? Angelica’s life was full of mysteries and unexplainable events.
Born in Chernigov, a small town in the Northeastern part of the Ukraine which at the time was part of the Russian Empire, she rebelled against her well-off merchant family and their traditional values, disagreeing from the age of 5 with the rules of upbringing imposed on the girls of her social milieu. She broke with her family when she became a young woman, refused the family inheritance and, after being cursed by her mother, left for Western Europe to live with the poor and ease their lives. She never saw her mother and most of her siblings again.
After completing her graduate education, Angelica quickly became one of the primary female lecturers in Europe. The first person to discover, educate and form the future Il Duce, she was also a close acquaintance of Lenin and Trotsky during their exile in Switzerland, stood next to them as their equal in the ‘all macho’ Soviet government after the Russian Revolution and became Lenin’s most trusted agent, whom he sent on secret missions vitally important for the young Soviet State.
Disillusioned with the Revolution, Angelica was possibly the only high-ranked official in Russian history who left the country legitimately without being prosecuted. Rejected by many friends and colleagues, she became an anti-communist but no one believed her because of her reputation as Lenin’s associate. The Russians suspected that she worked for the BOI, the Bureau of Investigation, the predecessor of the FBI; the FBI that she worked for the NKVD, the KGB predecessor; and the Swiss, Germans and French accused her of being a triple agent.
An unattractive woman, Angelica was five feet tall, plump, slightly cross-eyed with practically asymmetric face. And yet, she was a mistress of Mussolini, Lenin, Trotsky and possibly Stalin. She also had a string of other lesser-known lovers she had met during her long career.
Angelica spoke thirteen languages, moved to a new lodging on average every two years, each time renting tiny maid’s rooms often on the top floor with no heat, elevator or cooking facilities, carrying with her two suitcases full of books and documents. She lived in Russia, Belgium, Switzerland, and spent ten years in France, another ten years in the U.S. and more than twenty years in Italy.
First ever Biography of Angelica Balabanoff published by McFarland.