The Daughter of the Commandant, by Aleksandr Pushkin

Preface.

ALEXKSANDR POUSHKIN, the Poet, was born at Petersburg in 1799 of good family, and died before he was forty, in the prime of his genius. The novel here offered to the public is considered by Russians his best prose work. Others are Boris Godúnof, a dramatic sketch, but never intended to be put on the stage, and The Prisoner of the Caucasus. Among his poems are “The Gipsies,” “Rúslan and Ludmilla,” “The Fountain of Tears,” and “Evgeni Onéghin.” The last, if I mistake not, was translated into English some years ago. Some of Poushkin’s writings having drawn suspicion on him he was banished to a distant part of the Empire, where he filled sundry administrative posts. The Tzar Nicholai, on his accession in 1825, recalled him to Petersburg and made him Historiographer. The works of the poet were much admired in society, but he was not happy in his domestic life. His outspoken language made him many enemies, and disgraceful reports were purposely spread abroad concerning him, which resulted in a duel in which he was mortally wounded by his brother-inlaw, George Danthès. His death was mourned publicly by all Russia.

M.P.M.H.

April, 1891.

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