Gagarin, the name of a princely Russian family, deriving its origin from the rulers of Starodub, having its seat in Moscow, and of which the most distinguished members are the following. I. Matfei Petrovitch, governor general of Siberia under Peter L, was executed in June, 1721, on the charge of having conspired to make himself sovereign of that province.
II. Alexander Ivanoviteh, a general officer in the Russian army, distinguished himself in the Caucasus and the Crimea, and in 1857, while governor general of Kutais, was assassinated by the prince of Suanethi, which province he was endeavoring to annex to the empire.
III. Pavel Pavloviteh, an influential statesman under Alexander II., was prominent as a member of the council of emancipation; from 1864 to 1809 presided over the council of ministers and that of the empire; and subsequently he was associated in the latter office with the grand duke Constantine until his death in St. Petersburg, March 4, 1872.
IV. John (Ivan), a Jesuit writer and missionary, born in Moscow, Aug. 1, 1814. Like most of the younger members of his family, he embraced a diplomatic career, and was secretary of the Russian embassy in Paris, when he joined the Roman Catholic communion, and entered the society of Jesus Aug: 12, 1843. After receiving holy orders, he was appointed professor of theology in the Jesuit seminary at Laval, and in 1857 founded con-jointly with Pere Charles Daniel a serial entitled Etudes de theologie, de philosophie et d'his-toire, at first published quarterly, then monthly, and finally fortnightly. Father Gagarin spent several years in Constantinople, where he founded the society of St. Dionysius the Areopagite, which aims at reuniting the Greek and Latin churches. He has published a large number of pamphlets, mainly relating to the history of the Graeco-Russian church and to its reunion with that of Rome, the most recent of which are Constitution et situation presente de toutes les Eglises de l'Orient (Paris, 1805), and Le clerge russe (Brussels, 1871; English translation, London, 1872).