By D. S. Mirsky
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back disguise quote: A heritage of Russian Literature: From Its Beginnings to 1900 includes all of D. S. Mirsky's A historical past 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 by way of Francis J. Whitfield and released in 1949 by means of Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. Russian literature has constantly been inseparably associated with Russian historical past. D. S. Mirsky, in facing this truth, regularly stored in brain the ever colourful and altering elements of the single in discussing the opposite. With a prepared and penetrating experience of values, fortified by means of a mode sharp adequate to hold each nuance of his that means, he explored the most complicated and engaging literatures of the world.
" [Mirsky's] histories of literature ... own lcarning, attractiveness, wit, highbrow gaiety, and an incomparable kind and sweep and tool of speaking impressions and ideas." Sir' Isaiah Berlin
"Prince Mirsky is either student and stylist; his books, for this reason, 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
Plays from the repertory of the German strolling players were translated by scribes of the Foreign Office into stilted and unidiomatic Slavonic prose (which sounds especially quaint in the comic parts), and a theater was instituted at the Royal Palace. One of the first plays produced was a distant descendant of Tamburlaine the Great. It was only after Gregori's first production that Symeon of P6lotsk ventured to introduce the Kievan school drama and wrote his Action of the Prodigal Son in rhymed syllabic verse.
Oschastie and Bow2, with folk poetry, but again in a different way, is The Story of a Young Man and a Girl, a dialogue between a suitor and a disdainful maiden. He praises her in imaginative language closely connected with the language of folk poetry. To every tirade of his she answers with a tirade of coarse and equally imaginative vituperation, which is also connected with popular charms and curses. She ends, however, by yielding. It is a piece of elaborate verbal art and has no parallel in Old Russian literature.
The oldest extant specimens are found in the rhymed preface to the Ostr6g Bible (1581). In the seventeenth century much rhymed verse was written by West Russian scholars. The prosody they employed was Polish, which, like French and Italian, is based on the counting of syllables, without any obligatory position for stress accent. The matter of this West Russian poetry is panegyrical or didactic. About 1670 it was imported to Moscow by the White Russian cleric Symeon of P6lotsk, who flourished at the courts of Alexis and his son Theodore and who attained considerable elegance in the turning of syllabic verses.
A History of Russian Literature from its Beginnings to 1900 by D. S. Mirsky