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Russian Personalities

People well-known in art, sport, film, fashion

Category Archive: Art

Alexander Griboyedov and Nino Chavchavadze

Alexander Griboyedov and Nino Chavchavadze

Alexander Griboyedov and Nino Chavchavadze


Nino Chavchavadze was called “the black rose of Tiflis”. This woman was mourning for 28 years after the death of her husband – Russian poet, diplomat and composer Alexander Griboyedov, the author of the immortal Woe from Wit.
The diplomat, writer and composer Alexander Griboyedov was 17 years older than Nino Chavchavadze. And he knew the girl from her childhood. Little Nino called the Russian diplomat Uncle Sandro. He often visited her father’s house. Alexander Chavchavadze was a Georgian poet and governor of several regions in Georgia. The friendship of two Alexanders was not accidental. Chavchavadze was one of the most educated people of his country and his time. Griboyedov showed himself as a unique personality.
In his youth, the future author of the play Woe from Wit studied at three faculties of the Moscow University. In addition, Griboyedov was an excellent musician: several works written by him, including two great waltzes, reached us.
Extraordinary abilities helped Alexander to become successful in his diplomatic career. In 1819, at the age of 24, Griboyedov liberated the Russian soldiers who were in Persian captivity. Since then he became a diplomat in Persia and quickly learned Persian.
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Durovs – famous circus dynasty

Durov - founder of the famous circus dynasty

Durov – founder of the famous circus dynasty


Durov is a famous surname in the history of Russia. The representatives of this dynasty are popular actors and circus performers. You know, Nadezhda Durova, the heroine of the war of 1812, the legendary cavalry-girl, is among the ancestors of the glorious dynasty. By the way, she was Kutuzov’s adjutant during the Patriotic War. After the war she even turned her house into a small menagerie. Nadezhda took the abandoned and sick animals that she met on her way. Her descendants were fond of animals too.
For many years Vladimir Durov’s name was on the hoardings of Russia and many other countries. He was a popular circus performer whose bold wit always drew applause and laughter. Actually, he used to call himself a clown, or jester, but in fact he was a deep thinker, an accomplished musician and sculptor, and the author of many interesting books for children. What is more, Vladimir had an immense knowledge of animal psychology and wrote a number of serious works on the subject which won wide acclaim from scientists abroad.
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Mikhail Bulgakov – author of Master and Margarita

Mikhail Bulgakov – author of Master and Margarita

Mikhail Bulgakov – author of Master and Margarita


Mikhail Bulgakov was a Soviet novelist, journalist, and playwright. You know, he is an author of great novel Master and Margarita.
The boy was born on May 2, 1891 in Kiev. His parents were educated and intelligent people. The mother worked as a teacher and the father who graduated from the Theological Academy taught at various educational institutions. At the end of 1893 he became the Kiev regional censor. By the way, Mikhail had five siblings.
In 1909 Bulgakov entered the Medical Faculty of the Kiev University. Then, in 1914, the First World War began. In 1916, after graduation, the future writer worked in a field hospital in Cherepovets and Kamenets-Podolsky. And in September of the same year he was sent to run a rural hospital in the Smolensk province.
In 1917, Mikhail Afanasievich was transferred to Vyazma. This life period was reflected in the Notes of a Young Doctor, written in 1926.
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Demyan Bedny – Soviet writer

Demyan Bedny – Soviet writer

Demyan Bedny – Soviet writer


Demyan Bedny was a Russian Soviet writer, poet, publicist and public figure. He was a member of the RSDLP (Russian Social Democratic Labour Party) since 1912. In 1938 Demyan was expelled from the party and restored to party membership posthumously in 1956.
Demyan Bedny (his real name was Efim Alekseevich Pridvorov) was born on April 13, 1883 in Gubovka, Kherson Province. The boy was born into a peasant family.
In 1896-1900 he studied at the Kiev military paramedic school, in 1904-1908 at the philological faculty of the St. Petersburg University. His first poems were published in 1899. As a pseudonym (Bedny means Poor), he took the village nickname of his uncle, a public accuser and an atheist.
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Nadezhda Lokhvitskaya – Teffi

Nadezhda Lokhvitskaya - Teffi

Nadezhda Lokhvitskaya – Teffi


Nadezhda Lokhvitskaya was a Russian humorist writer and she wrote under the pseudonym Teffi.
Nadezhda Alexandrovna Lokhvitskaya was born in April 1872. Her father A.V. Lokhvitsky was a very famous man. He was a professor of criminalistics, a wealthy man. The numerous family had various talents. All children wrote something, especially had a great interest in poetry.
Teffi said about this: “This occupation was considered for us somehow very shameful, and hardly anyone who caught a brother or sister with a pencil, notebook and inspirational face – immediately started shouting: Writes! He writes! Writer!”
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Alexander Grin – famous writer

Alexander Grin – famous writer

Alexander Grin – famous writer


Alexander Grin was a Russian writer, poet, author of philosophical and psychological works.
Alexander Stephanovich Grinevsky was born on August 23, 1880, Vyatka province, Russian Empire. His father Stefan Grinevsky was an exiled Polish rebel. He was an employee and did not think of anything, except for a timely payment of salaries. But his eldest son Sasha was very different. At the age of eight the boy received three chests full of books about adventures, brave travelers and unknown distant countries.
After school Sasha went to Odessa dreaming of becoming a sailor. The boy was fascinated by southern bright city. Sasha managed to get a job as a cabin boy and even sailed to Alexandria. However, he left the ship very soon. Then he wandered around the country and tried many jobs, but did not find a job for himself.
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Alexander Ostrovsky – regarded playwright

Alexander Ostrovsky – regarded playwright

Alexander Ostrovsky – regarded playwright


Alexander Ostrovsky was a Russian playwright, whose work became the most important stage in the development of the Russian national theater. By the way, he was a corresponding member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences.
The boy was born on March 31 (April 12), 1823 in Moscow. His father Nikolai Fedorovich was the son of a priest, and graduated from the Kostroma seminary, then from the Moscow Theological Academy. However, he didn’t become a priest, but a collegiate assessor, and in 1839 he received the nobility. His mother Lyubov Ivanovna Savvina died when Alexander was nine years old. There were eight children in the family, four of them died in infancy. Thanks to the position of Nikolai Fedorovich, the family lived in prosperity, and great attention was paid to the education of children. Five years after his mother’s death, Alexander’s father married Baroness Emilia Andreevna von Tessin, the daughter of a Swedish nobleman.
Thanks to his father’s large library, the boy became interested in literature. To tell the truth, the father wanted his son to be a lawyer. In 1835, Ostrovsky entered the third class of the 1st Moscow Gubernia Gymnasium, after which, in 1840, he became a student of the law faculty of the Moscow University. But he failed to finish the university. Then he worked in Moscow courts until 1850. By 1846 Ostrovsky had already written many scenes from the merchant’s life and began to write the comedy The Bankrupt.
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