Vladimir Mikhailovich Bekhterev was born on January 24, 1857, in Sorali (now Sorali, Tatarstan, Russian Federation), a small village in the forests of Vyatka province between the great bend of the Volga and the foothills of the Ural Mountains. Later, the family moved to Vyatka where his father, a district police officer Mikhail Pavlovich, worked as a clerk. His mother, Maria Mikhailovna, was an educated woman who was determined that her children would receive a proper education. Bekhterev was the youngest of three sons. His father, who suffered from tuberculosis, died when Bekhterev was 9 years old, and the family then suffered from poverty. The mother was forced to rent out some of the rooms in their apartment in order to have some income.