Color portrait of Russian poet, novelist, and dramatist Aleksandr Pushkin.

Aleksandr Pushkin

(1799 - 1837)

Aleksandr Pushkin’s great-grandfather was the general Abram Gannibal, an African slave given as a gift to Peter I, whom the author wrote about in his unfinished novel The Blackamoor of Peter the Great. His historical play Boris Godunov and his novel in verse Yevgeny Onegin were turned into operas by Modest Mussorgsky and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, respectively. When a bronze statue of Pushkin was unveiled in Moscow in 1880, Ivan Turgenev and Fyodor Dostoevsky delivered speeches in praise of him.

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Nothing is hidden from the eyes of the observing world.

—Aleksandr Pushkin, 1837

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