The waggon of life and other lyrics by Russian poets of the nineteenth century

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Size is 8vo, 78pgs. Copy of Published by London: Lon. Cresset Pr. About this Item: London: Lon. Ivory Cloth. Bi-lingual text of Pushkin, Lermontov, Turgenev, et al. Gilt cloth. First U. Foreword by C. A very good copy in lightly used dust jacket. Published by Cresset Press, London About this Item: Cresset Press, London, Yellow Cloth. Foreword by Dr. On the ffep is written ' Mabel with love and all good wishes, Cecil Now protected dust jacket has very light wear to corners and Crown and Tail of Spine which is a little darkened.

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Contents clean: closed edges lightly peppered with foxing. In the original binding of red cloth, spine titled in gilt, clean, bright and firm, spine slightly paler, extremities slightly blunted. During the last years of his life, he was engaged in collecting materials for a history of Peter the Great. His power of production had never run dry from the moment he left school, although his actual work was interrupted from time to time by distractions and the society of his friends. All the important larger works of Pushkin have now been mentioned; but during the whole course of his career he was always pouring out a stream of lyrics and occasional [ Pg 86] pieces, many of which are among the most beautiful things he wrote.

His variety and the width of his range are astonishing. It is Miltonic in conception and Dantesque in expression; the syllables ring out in pure concent, like blasts from a silver clarion. It is, as it were, the Pillars of Hercules of the Russian language. Nothing finer as sound could ever be compounded with Russian vowels and consonants; nothing could be more perfectly planned, or present, in so small a vehicle, so large a vision to the imagination. Even a rough prose translation will give some idea of the imaginative splendour of the poem—. And the Seraphim with six wings appeared to me at the crossing of the ways: And he touched my eyelids, and his fingers were as soft as sleep: and like the eyes of an eagle that is frightened my prophetic eyes were awakened.

He touched my ears and he filled them with noise and with sound: and I heard the Heavens shuddering and the flight of the angels in the height, and the moving of the beasts that are under the waters, and the noise of the growth of the branches in the valley. He bent down over me and he looked upon my lips; and he tore out my sinful tongue, and he took away that which is idle and that which is evil with his right hand, and his right hand was dabbled with blood; and he set there in its stead, between my perishing lips, the tongue of a wise serpent.

And he clove my breast asunder with a sword, and he plucked out my trembling heart, and in my cloven breast he set a burning coal of fire. A guardsman, Heckeren-Dantes, had been flirting with his wife. Pushkin received an anonymous letter, and being wrongly convinced that Heckeren-Dantes was the author of it, wrote him a violent letter which made a duel inevitable.

A duel was fought on the 27th of February, , and Pushkin was mortally wounded. Such was his frenzy of rage that, after lying wounded and unconscious in the snow, on regaining consciousness, he insisted on going on with the duel, and fired another shot, giving a great cry of joy when he saw that he had wounded his adversary. It was only a slight wound in the hand. It was not until he reached home that his anger passed away. He died on the 29th of February, after forty-five hours of excruciating suffering, heroically borne; he forgave his enemies; he wished no one to avenge him; he received the last sacraments; [ Pg 91] and he expressed feelings of loyalty and gratitude to his sovereign.

He was thirty-seven years and eight months old. Pushkin began his career with liberal aspirations, and he disappointed some in the loyalty to the throne, the Church, the autocracy, and the established order of things which he manifested later; in turning to religion; in remaining in the Government service; in writing patriotic poems; in holding the position of Gentleman of the Bed Chamber at Court; in being, in fact, what is called a reactionary. But it would be a mistake to imagine that Pushkin was a Lost Leader who abandoned the cause of liberty for a handful of silver and a riband to stick in his coat.

Pushkin could not escape being influenced by it; but he was no more a rebel then, than he was a reactionary afterwards, when again the very air which the whole of educated society breathed was conservative and nationalistic. It may be a pity that it [ Pg 92] was so; but so it was. It is no good making a revolution if you have nothing to make it with. The Decembrists by their premature action put the clock of Russian political progress back for years. The result was that men of impulse, aspiration, talent and originality had in the reign of Nicholas to seek an outlet for their feelings elsewhere than in politics, because politics then were simply non-existent.

But apart from this, even if the opportunities had been there, it may be doubted whether Pushkin would have taken them. He was not born with a passion to reform the world. He was neither a rebel nor a reformer; neither a liberal nor a conservative; he was a democrat in his love for the whole of the Russian people; he was a patriot in his love of his country. He was like Goethe in his attitude towards society, and the attitude of the social and official world towards him resembles the attitude of Weimar towards Goethe. During the first part of his career he gave himself up to pleasure, passion, and self-indulgence; after he was thirty he turned his mind to more serious things.

It would not be exact to say he became deeply religious, because he was religious by nature, and he soon discarded a fleeting phase of scepticism; but in spite of this he was a victim of amour-propre ; and he wavered between contempt of the society around him and a petty resentment against it which took the shape of scathing and sometimes cruel epigrams. There is one fact, however, which accounts for much. What pleased the public were the dazzling colours, the sensuous and sometimes libidinous images of his early poems; the romantic atmosphere; especially anything that was artificial in them.

They had not yet eyes to appreciate the noble lines, nor ears to appreciate the simpler and more majestic harmonies of his later work. Thus it was that they passed Boris [ Pg 95] Godunov by, and were disappointed in the later cantos of Onegin. This was, of course, discouraging. Nevertheless, it is laughable to rank Pushkin amongst the misunderstood, among the Shelleys, the Millets, of Literature and Art; or to talk of his sad fate.

To talk of him as one of the victims of literature is merely to depreciate him. He was exiled. Yes: but to the Caucasus, which gave him inspiration: to his own country home, which gave him leisure. He was censored. Yes: but the Emperor undertook to do the work himself. Had he lived in England, society—as was proved in the case of Byron—would have been a far severer censor of his morals and the extravagance of his youth, than the Russian Government.

Besides which, he won instantaneous fame, and in the society in which he moved he was surrounded by a band not only of devoted but distinguished admirers, amongst whom were some of the highest names in Russian literature—Karamzin, Zhukovsky, Gogol. The chief characteristic of his genius is its universality.

There appeared to be nothing he could not understand nor assimilate. He is a poet of everyday life: a realistic poet, and above all things a lyrical poet. He is not a dramatist, and as an epic writer, though he can mould a bas-relief and produce a noble fragment, he cannot set crowds in motion. He revealed to the Russians the beauty of their landscape and the poetry of their people; and they, with ears full of pompous diction, and eyes full of rococo and romantic stage properties, did not understand what he was doing: but they understood later.

For a time he fought against the stream, and all in vain; and then he gave himself up to the great current, which took him all too soon to the open sea. Like Peter the Great, he spent his whole life in apprenticeship, and his whole energies in craftsmanship. He was a great artist; his style is perspicuous, plastic, and pure; there is never a blurred outline, never a smear, never a halting phrase or a hesitating note. His diction is the inseparable skin of the thought.

You seem to hear him thinking. He was gifted with divine ease and unpremeditated spontaneity. His soul was sincere, noble, and open; he was frivolous, a child of the world and of his century; but if he was worldly, he was human; he was a citizen as well as a child of the world; and it is that which makes him the greatest of Russian poets. At the same time, he sought and served beauty, strenuously and faithfully; he was perhaps too faithful a servant of Apollo; too exclusive a lover of the beautiful. He never descended into Hell. Every great man is either an artist or a fighter; and often poets of genius, Byron and Heine for instance, are more pre-eminently fighters than they are artists.

Pushkin was an artist, and not a fighter.

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And this is what makes even his love-poems cold in comparison with those of other poets. Although he was the first to make notable what was called the romantic movement; and although at the beginning of his career he handled romantic [ Pg 99] subjects in a more or less romantic way, he was fundamentally a classicist—a classicist as much in the common-sense and realism and solidity of his conceptions and ideas, as in the perspicuity and finish of his impeccable form.

And he soon cast aside even the vehicles and clothes of romanticism, and exclusively followed reality. His work is beyond the reach of critics, whether favourable or unfavourable, for it lives in the hearts of his countrymen, and chiefly upon the lips of the young. In his notes there is the following passage—. He was struck solely by the picture of a man bound to a wild horse and borne over the steppes. A poetical picture of course; but see what he did with it.

What a living creation! What a broad brush! But do not expect to find either Mazepa or Charles, nor the usual gloomy Byronic hero.

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Byron was not thinking of him. He presented a series of pictures, one more striking than the other. The romantic movement in Russia was, as far as Pushkin was concerned, not really a romantic movement at all. And yet, for want of a better word, one is obliged to call it the romantic movement, as it was a new movement, a renascence that arose out of the ashes of the pseudo-classical eighteenth century convention.

The claim of his friend and fellow-student, Baron Delvig , to fame, rests rather on his friendship with Pushkin to whom he played the part of an admirable critic than on his own verse. He died in The name Lermontov is said to be the same as the Scotch Learmonth. The story of his short life is a simple one. He was born at Moscow in He visited the Caucasus when he was twelve.

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He was taught English by a tutor. He went to school at Moscow, and afterwards to the University. He left in owing to the disputes he had with the professors. Petersburg; and two years later he became an officer in the regiment of the Hussars. In he was transferred to Georgia, owing to the scandal caused by the outspoken violence of his verse; but he was transferred to Novgorod in , and was allowed to return to St. Petersburg in the same year. In he was again transferred to the Caucasus for fighting a duel with the son of the French Ambassador; towards the end of the year, he was once more allowed to return to St.

In [ Pg ] he went back for a third time to the Caucasus, where he forced a duel on one of his friends over a perfectly trivial incident, and was killed, on the 15th of July of the same year. In all the annals of poetry, there is no more curious figure than Lermontov. He was like a plant that above all others needed a sympathetic soil, a favourable atmosphere, and careful attention.

Considerable light is thrown on the contradictory and original character of the poet by his novel, A Hero of Our Days , the first psychological novel that appeared in Russia. The hero, Pechorin, is undoubtedly a portrait of the poet, although he himself said, and perhaps thought, that he was merely creating a type. The hero of the story, who is an officer in the Caucasus, analyses his own character, and lays bare his weaknesses, follies, and faults, with the utmost frankness. The presence of enthusiasm turns me to ice, and intercourse with a phlegmatic temperament would turn me into a passionate dreamer.

Have I offended any one? Do I belong to that category of people whose mere presence creates antipathy? I have become incapable of noble impulses. I am afraid of appearing ridiculous to myself. I am like a man yawning at a ball, who does not go home to bed because the carriage is not there, but as soon as the carriage is there, Good-bye! Why was I born? And since then how often have I played the part of the axe in the hands of fate.

Like the weapon of the executioner I have fallen on the necks of the victims, often without malice, always without pity. My love has never brought happiness, because I have never in the slightest degree sacrificed myself for those whom I loved. I loved for my own sake, for my own pleasure And if I die I shall not leave behind me one soul who understood me. Some think I am better, others that I am worse than I am. Some will say he was a good fellow; others he was a blackguard. It will be seen from these passages, all of which apply to Lermontov himself, even if they were not so intended, that he must have been a trying companion, friend, or acquaintance.

He could not bear not to make himself felt, and if he felt that he was unsuccessful in accomplishing this by pleasant means, he resorted to unpleasant means. And yet, at the same time, he was warm-hearted, thirsting for love and kindness, and capable of giving himself up to love—if he chose.

During his period of training at the Cadet School, he led a wild life; and when he became an officer, he hankered after social and not after literary success. He did not achieve it immediately; at first he was not noticed, and when he was noticed he was not liked. His looks were unprepossessing, and one of his legs was shorter than the other. His physical strength was enormous—he could bend a ramrod with his fingers. Noticed he was determined to be; and, as he himself says in one of his letters, observing that every one in society had some sort of pedestal—wealth, [ Pg ] lineage, position, or patronage—he saw that if he, not pre-eminently possessing any of these,—though he was, as a matter of fact, of a good Moscow family,—could succeed in engaging the attention of one person, others would soon follow suit.

This he set about to do by compromising a girl and then abandoning her: and he acquired the reputation of a Don Juan. Later, when he came back from the Caucasus, he was treated as a lion. All this does not throw a pleasant light on his character, more especially as he criticized in scathing tones the society in which he was anxious to play a part, and in which he subsequently enjoyed playing a part. But perhaps both attitudes of mind were sincere. He probably sincerely enjoyed society, and hankered after success in it; and equally sincerely despised society and himself for hankering after it.

As he grew older, his pride and the exasperating provocativeness of his conduct increased to such an extent that he seemed positively seeking for serious trouble, and for some one whose patience he could overtax, and on whom he could fasten a quarrel. And this was not slow to happen. The epoch, the atmosphere and the society were the worst possible for his peculiar nature; and the only fruitful result of the friction between himself and the society and the established order of his time, was that he was sent to the Caucasus, which proved to be a source of inspiration for him, as it had been for Pushkin.

You feel that he will never submit or yield; but then he died young; and the Russian poets often changed, and not infrequently adopted a compromise which was the same thing as submission. Lermontov was, like Pushkin, essentially a lyric poet, still more subjective, and profoundly self-centred. His attempts at the drama imitations of Schiller and an attempt at the manner of Griboyedov were failures. But, unlike Pushkin, he was a true romantic; and his work proves to us how essentially different a thing Russian romanticism is from French, German or English romanticism.

He began with astonishing precocity to write verse when he was twelve. His earliest efforts were in French.

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He then began to imitate Pushkin. While at the Cadet School he wrote a series of cleverly written, more or less indecent, and more or less Byronic—the Byron of Beppo —tales in verse, describing his love adventures, and episodes of garrison life. Lermontov owed nothing to his contemporaries, little to his predecessors, and still less to foreign models.

It is true that, as a school-boy, he wrote verses full of Byronic disillusion and satiety, but these were merely echoes of his reading. The gloom of spirit which he expressed later on was a permanent and innate feature of his own temperament. Later, the reading of Shelley spurred on his imagination to emulation, but not to imitation. He sought his own path from the beginning, and he remained in it with obdurate persistence. He remained obstinately himself, indifferent as a rule to outside events, currents of thought and feeling.

And he clung to the themes which he chose in his youth. His mind to him a kingdom was, and he peopled it with images [ Pg ] and fancies of his own devising. The path which he chose was a narrow one. It was a romantic path. He chose for the subject of the poem by which he is perhaps most widely known, The Demon , the love of a demon for a woman.

The colours are as fresh to-day as when they were first laid on. The heroine is a Circassian woman, and the action of the poem is in the Caucasus. He dreams of finding in Tamara the joys of the paradise he has foregone. And he [ Pg ] pours out to her one of the most passionate love declarations ever written, in couplet after couplet of words that glow like jewels and tremble like the strings of a harp, Tamara yields to him, and forfeits her life; but her soul is borne to Heaven by the Angel of Light; she has redeemed her sin by death, and the Demon is left as before alone in a loveless, lampless universe.

The poem is interspersed with descriptions of the Caucasus, which are as glowing and splendid as the impassioned utterance of the Demon. Lermontov followed up his first draft of The Demon originally planned in , but not finished in its final form until with other romantic tales, the scene of which for the most part is laid in the Caucasus: such as Izmail Bey , Hadji-Abrek , Orsha the Boyar —the last not a Caucasian tale.

These were nearly all of them sketches in which he tried the colours of his palette. But with Mtsyri , the Novice , in which he used some of the materials of the former tales, he produced a finished picture. The child grows up home-sick at heart, and one day his longing for freedom becomes ungovernable, and he escapes and roams about in the mountains. He loses his way in the forest and is brought back to the monastery after three days, dying from starvation, exertion, and exhaustion. Before he dies he pours out his confession, which takes up the greater part of the poem.

He confesses how in the monastery he felt his own country and his own people forever calling, and how he felt he must seek his own people. He describes his wanderings: how he scrambles down the mountain-side and hears the song of a Georgian woman, and sees her as she walks down a narrow path with a pitcher on her head and draws water from the stream.

At nightfall he sees the light of a dwelling-place twinkling like a falling star; but he dares not seek it. He loses his way in the forest, he encounters and kills a panther. In the morning, he finds a way out of the woods when the daylight comes; he lies in the grass exhausted under the blinding noon, of which Lermontov gives a gorgeous and detailed description—. Perishing of hunger and thirst, fever and delirium overtake him, and he fancies that he is lying at the bottom of a deep stream, where speckled fishes are playing in the crystal waters.

In this poem Lermontov reaches the high-water mark of his descriptive powers. Its pages glow with the splendour of the Caucasus. This poem is written as a folk-story, in the style of the Byliny , and it in no way resembles a pastiche. Imaginative he is, but he is never lost in the dim twilight of Coleridge. Compared even with Musset and Victor Hugo, how much nearer the earth Lermontov is than either of them! Victor Hugo dealt [ Pg ] with just the same themes; but in Lermontov, the most splendid painter of mountains imaginable, you never hear. Or take Musset; Musset dealt with romantic themes si quis alius ; but when he deals with a subject like Don Juan, which of all subjects belonged to the age of Pushkin and Lermontov, he writes lines like these—.

Here again we are confronted with a different kind of imagination. Or take a bit of sheer description—. The objects themselves suffice. Lermontov sang of disappointed love over and over again, but never did he create a single image such as—. In his descriptive work he is more like Byron; but Byron was far less romantic and far less imaginative than Lermontov, although he invented Byronism, and shattered the crumbling walls of the eighteenth century that surrounded the city of romance, and dallied with romantic themes in his youth.

All his best work, the finest passages of Childe Harold , and the whole of Don Juan , were slices of his own life and observation, choses vues ; he never created a single character that was not a reflection of himself; and he never entered into the city whose walls he had stormed, and where he had planted his flag.

This does not mean that Lermontov is inferior to the Western romantic poets. It [ Pg ] simply means that the Russian poet is—and one might add the Russian poets are—different. And, indeed, it is this very difference,—what he did with this peculiar realistic paste in his composition,—that constitutes his unique excellence. So far from its being a vice, he made it into his especial virtue. Lermontov sometimes, in presenting a situation and writing a poem on a fact, presents that situation and that fact without exaggeration, emphasis, adornment, imagery, metaphor, or fancy of any kind, in the language of everyday life, and at the same time he achieves poetry.

A case in point is his long poem on the Oprichnik, which has been mentioned; and some of the most striking examples of this unadorned and realistic writing are to be found in his lyrics. The language is the language of ordinary everyday conversation. Every word the officer says might have been said by him in ordinary life, and there is not a note that jars; the speech is the living speech of conversation without being slang: and the result is a poignant piece of poetry.

All Russian poets have this gift of reality of conception and simplicity of treatment in a greater or a lesser degree; perhaps none has it in such a supreme degree as Lermontov. How in the world did he do it? Thus, what Matthew Arnold said about Byron and Wordsworth is true about Lermontov—there are moments when Nature takes the pen from his hand and writes for him.

In Lermontov there is nothing slovenly; but there is a great deal that is flat and sullen. But if one reviews the great amount of work he produced in his short life, one is struck, not by its variety, as in the case of Pushkin,—it is, on the contrary, limited and monotonous in subject,—but by his authentic lyrical inspiration, by the strength, the intensity, the concentration of his genius, the richness of his imagination, the wealth of his palette, his gorgeous colouring and the high level of his strong square musical verse.

And perhaps more than by anything else, one is struck by the blend in his nature and his work which has just been discussed, [ Pg ] of romantic imagination and stern reality, of soaring thought and earthly common-sense, as though we had before us the temperament of a Thackeray with the wings of a Shelley. Lermontov is certainly, whichever way you take him, one of the most astonishing figures, and certainly the greatest purely lyrical Erscheinung in Russian literature.

With the death of Lermontov in , the springtide of national song that began in the reign of Alexander I comes to an end; for the only poet he left behind him did not survive him long. This was his contemporary Koltsov , the greatest of Russian folk-poets. This is the great difference between Koltsov and other popular poets who came later. Moreover, he caught and reproduced [ Pg ] the true Volkston in his lyrics, so that they are indistinguishable in accent from real folk-poetry. But he died the year after Lermontov, of consumption, and with his death the curtain was rung down on the first act of Russian literature.

When it was next rung up, it was on the age of prose. When the curtain again rose on Russian literature it was on an era of prose; and the leading protagonist of that era, both by his works of fiction and his dramatic work, was Nicholas Gogol []. It is true that in the thirties Russia began to produce home-made novels. Are there any? And, just as Lermontov was the successor of Pushkin in the domain of poetry, so in the domain of satire Gogol was the successor of Griboyedov; and in creating a national work he was the heir of Pushkin.

He was born in near Poltava, in the Cossack country, and was brought up by his grandfather, a Cossack; but he left the Ukraine and settled in in St.

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Petersburg, where he obtained a place in a Government office. After an unsuccessful attempt to go on the stage, and a brief career as tutor, he was given a professorship of History; but he failed here also, and finally turned to literature. The publication of his first efforts gained him the acquaintance of the literary men of the day, and he became the friend of Pushkin, who proved a valuable friend, adviser, and critic, and urged him to write on the life of the people.

He lived in St. Petersburg from to ; and it was perhaps home-sickness which inspired him to write his Little Russian sketches— Evenings on a Farm on the Dikanka ,—which appeared in , followed by Mirgorod , a second series, in He had a great deal of the dreamer in him, a touch of the eerie, a delight in the supernatural, an impish fancy that reminds one sometimes of Hoffmann and sometimes of R.

Stevenson, as well as a deep religious [ Pg ] vein which was later on to dominate and oust all his other qualities. But, just as we find in the Russian poets a curious mixture of romanticism and realism, of imagination and common-sense, so in Gogol, side by side with his imaginative gifts, which were great, there is a realism based on minute observation. In addition to this, and tempering his penetrating observation, he had a rich streak of humour, a many-sided humour, ranging from laughter holding both its sides, to a delicate and half melancholy chuckle, and in his later work to biting irony.

We are plunged into the South, on a blazing noonday, when the corn is standing in sheaves and wheat is being sold at the fair; and the fair, with its noise, its smell and its colour, rises before us as vividly as Normandy leaps out of the pages of Maupassant, or Scotland from the pages of Stevenson.

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And just as Andrew Lang once said that probably only a Scotsman, and a Lowland Scotsman, could know how true to life the [ Pg ] characters in Kidnapped were, so it is probable that only a Russian, and indeed a Little Russian, appreciates to the full how true to life are the people, the talk, and the ambient air in the tales of Gogol. And then we at once get that hint of the supernatural which runs like a scarlet thread through all these stories; the rumour that the Red Jacket has been observed in the fair; and the Red Jacket , so the gossips say, belongs to a little Devil, who being turned out of Hell as a punishment for some misdemeanour—probably a good intention—established himself in a neighbouring barn, and from home-sickness took to drink, and drank away all his substance; so that he was obliged to pawn his red jacket for a year to a Jew, who sold it before the year was out, whereupon the buyer, recognizing its unholy origin, cut it up into bits and threw it away, after which the Devil appeared in the shape of a pig every year at the fair to find the pieces.

It is on this Red Jacket that the story turns. In this first volume, the supernatural plays a predominant part throughout; the stories tell of water-nymphs, the Devil, who steals the moon, witches, magicians, and men who [ Pg ] traffic with the Evil One and lose their souls. It is as strong and as direct as a Border ballad. Viy , which tells of a witch, is the most creepy and imaginative of his supernatural stories. Later, he published two more collections of stories: Arabesques and Tales In these, poetry, witches, water-nymphs, magicians, devils, and epic adventure are all left behind.

After years of privation he saves enough money to buy one, and on the first day he wears it, it is stolen. He dies of melancholia, and his ghost haunts the streets. This story is the only begetter of the large army of pathetic [ Pg ] figures of failure that crowd the pages of Russian literature. While Gogol had been writing and publishing these tales, he had also been steadily writing for the stage; but here the great difficulty and obstacle was the Censorship, which was almost as severe as it was in England at the end of the reign of Edward VII. But, by a curious paradox, the play, which you would have expected the Censorship to forbid before all other plays, The Revisor , or Inspector-General , was performed.

This was owing to the direct intervention of the Emperor.

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The Revisor is the second comic masterpiece of the Russian stage. The plot was suggested to Gogol by Pushkin. The officials of an obscure country town hear the startling news that a Government Inspector is arriving incognito to investigate their affairs. A traveller from St. Petersburg—a fine natural liar—is taken for the Inspector, plays up to the part, and gets away just before the arrival of the real Inspector, which is the end of the play. The play is a satire on the Russian bureaucracy. Almost every single character in it is dishonest; and the empty-headed, and irrelevant hero, with his magnificent talent [ Pg ] for easy lying, is a masterly creation.

The play at once became a classic, and retains all its vitality and comic force to-day. There is no play which draws a larger audience on holidays in St. Petersburg and Moscow. He had in his mind a work of great importance on which he had already been working for some time. This was his Dead Souls , his most ambitious work, and his masterpiece. It was Pushkin who gave him the idea of the book. The hero of the book, Chichikov, conceives a brilliant idea. Nobody looked at the lists between the periods of revision.

The book was to be divided in three parts. The first part appeared in Gogol went on working at the second and third parts until , when he died. He twice threw the second part of the work into the fire when it was finished; so that all we possess is the first part, and the second part printed from an incomplete manuscript. The second part was certainly finished when he destroyed it, and it is probable that the third part was sketched. He had intended in the second part to work out the moral regeneration of Chichikov, and to give to the world his complete message. Persecuted by a dream he was unable to realize and an ambition which he was not able to fulfil, Gogol was driven inwards, and his natural religious feeling grew more intense and made him into an ascetic and a recluse.

This break in the middle of his career is characteristic of Russia. Tolstoy, of course, furnishes the most typical example of the same thing. But it is [ Pg ] a common Russian characteristic for men midway in a successful career to turn aside from it altogether, and seek consolation in the things which are not of this world.

It pleased the enthusiasts for Western Europe by its reality, its artistic conception and execution, and by its social ideas; and it pleased the Slavophile Conservatives by its truth to life, and by its smell of Russia. Dust wrapper has light fading, with small nicks Size: Octavo standard book size. Category: Poetry; Pictures of this item not already displayed here available upon request.

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