Written: Written on January 27, 1916
Published: First published in 1929 in Lenin Miscellany XI. Sent from Berne to Zurich. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1971, Moscow, Volume 36, page 365.
Translated: Andrew Rothstein
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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I should very much like to go to Zurich for two or three weeks to work in the libraries on a piece of research. My wife also. So far we have no papers, but hope soon to get them. The question is whether we shall be able to overcome the financial difficulties. I would very much ask you to reply frankly and without exaggeration to the following questions:
(1) What net income can there be (i.e., for me) from a lecture? Minimum and maximum? The subject: “Two Internationals”: the growing division and rupture with the social-chauvinists throughout the world. Is it possible to increase the income by giving two lectures, and by how much? (2) Will the local comrades help the two of us to get cheap accommodation? (3) How much will it cost to have a room (for two, even if with a single bed) per week? The cheapest, preferably in a worker’s family? (4) Dinner in a canteen, if there is one (here we pay 65 centimes in a students’ canteen)? (5) Morgenkafee and coffee in the evening, because, of course, we cannot do our own housekeeping in Zurich?
The cost of the journey will be 7x4=28 francs; extra expenditure on living in another town? That is the question. The room situation here is bad. Do you happen to know a worker’s family which could reliably promise to put us up cheap?
I shall be very grateful for a frank reply, but without any wild promises.
P.S. Are there any cheap self-service food counters or the like, and what are the prices?
 A reference to Lenin’s work on his book Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism.
 In Zurich, Lenin read two lectures: on February 17, 1916, “Two Internationals”, and on February 26, 1916, “‘Conditions of Peace’ in Connection with the National Question”.