By D. S. Mirsky
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back disguise quote: A background of Russian Literature: From Its Beginnings to 1900 comprises all of D. S. Mirsky's A heritage of Russian Literature and the 1st chapters of his modern Russian Literature, as they seemed within the one-volume A historical past of Russian Literature, edited through Francis J. Whitfield and released in 1949 by means of Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. Russian literature has continuously been inseparably associated with Russian historical past. D. S. Mirsky, in facing this truth, continually stored in brain the ever colourful and altering elements of the only in discussing the opposite. With a prepared and penetrating feel of values, fortified by means of a method sharp sufficient to hold each nuance of his which means, he explored probably the most advanced and engaging literatures of the world.
" [Mirsky's] histories of literature ... own lcarning, attractiveness, wit, highbrow gaiety, and an incomparable type and sweep and tool of speaking impressions and ideas." Sir' Isaiah Berlin
"Prince Mirsky is either pupil and stylist; his books, as a result, have a double correct to live." Clifton Fadiman
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Additional info for A History of Russian Literature from its Beginnings to 1900
The ode in Elizabeth's and Catherine's Russia was an important institution. There was a constant demand for odes at court, and ode-writing brought more tangible results in the form of pensions and honors than any other kind of literary exercise. The average level of ode-writing was naturally low. Except Derzbavin alone, all the odewriters of the time of Catherine were more or less unoriginal imitators of Lomon6sov. The most famous of them was Vasfly Petr6v (1736-99), who lived for two years in THB AGE OF CLASSICISM 49 England and was an admirer and translator of Pope.
His. songs are, of all his writings, those which still can be expected to attract the reader of poetry. They are remarkable for a truly prodigious metrical inventiveness (not so much as imitated by his successors) and a genuine gift of melody. In subject matter they are entirely Within the pale of classical, conventional love poetry. Sumar6kov also pioneered in journalism and literary criticism. His criticism is usually carping and superficial, but it did much to inculcate on the Russian public the canons of classical taste.
He dared to rebuke Peter for his divorce, lamented the fate of the Church in a secularized Russia, and dared to raise his voice against the intolerable weight of conscriptions and taxes that ground down the lower classes. Feofan Prokop6vich, a younger man, was animated with a different spirit. In secularizing his own mentality he went further than any other prelate. Very widely educated, he was the first Russian writer to go direct to the fountainhead of European culture in Italy and not to be satisfied with Polish and Polish-Latin learning.
A History of Russian Literature from its Beginnings to 1900 by D. S. Mirsky