PUSHKIN MEMORIAL DAY
On this day in 1837 the greatest Russian poet Alexander Pushkin died tragically. He was fatally wounded in a duel with Georges-Charles de Heeckeren d’Anthes, a French officer in the service of the Russian empress. It’s believed that d’Anthes attempted to seduce the poet’s wife, Natalia.
The conflict between Pushkin and d’Anthes began when Pushkin faced scandalous rumors that his wife was having a love affair with d’Anthes. Furious Pushkin sent him a challenge to a duel. Shortly after the duel was cancelled because d’Anthes made a proposal to Natalia’s sister – Ekaterina Goncharova. But this marriage did not resolve the conflict. Georges d’Anthes continued to pursue Natalia Pushkina in public. Rumors that d’Anthes had married Natalia’s sister just to save her reputation circulated. Finally, Pushkin sent a highly insulting letter to step-father of d’Anthes – Jacob Heeckeren. As Pushkin knew, the only answer to that letter could be a challenge to a duel.
The duel took place on the 8th of February in the suburbs of Saint-Petersburg at the Black River. D’Anthes fired first. He critically wounded Pushkin. The bullet entered Pushkin’s hip and penetrated his abdomen. Pushkin managed to rise and make a shot, but only lightly wounded d’Anthes in the right arm. Two days later Pushkin died of peritonitis. The funeral service in Saint-Petersburg was attended by thousands of people.
«Pushkin is our everything»
Alexander Pushkin made a huge contribution to Russian culture ……….