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 Nestor Kukolnik

Born:   September 8, 1809
Deceased:   December 20, 1868

The playwright, prose writer and poet


Nestor Vasilievich Kukolnik was born on September 8th (20), 1809 in St.Petersburg into the family of a scientist and a teacher.

He graduated from the Nezhinsky Grammar School of Higher Sciences (1821, 1824 - 1829), where he started his experiments in literature. He carried on with them in Vilna, where his elder brother Pavel Kukolnik worked as the university professor since 1825. In Vilna Nestor Kukolnik taught Russian literature in a grammar school in 1829 - 1831 and published a practical course of Russian grammar. From 1831 he lived in Petersburg; for a short while he returned to Vilna as the secretary of the commission for foundation of the Medical Surgical Academy (1832). He served in the office of the Minister of Finance, the 2nd branch of the imperial office, and then tried to make his living with his literary works. In 1843 he returned to official work, this time in the Ministry of Defense; while at service there, he made numerous and sometimes long business trips across Russia.

Nestor Kukolnik gained popularity in 1834, when his drama Hand of Almighty Saved the Fatherland was stage in the Aleksandrinsky Theater and was approved by Emperor Nicholas I. In the period of his creative heyday he bonded with the composer Mikhail Glinka and artist Karl Brullov.

Nestor Kukolnik was the author of numerous dramas and drama fantasies in verses, historical tragedies, novels, stories, poems (lots of which became basis for popular romance songs), and articles on art criticism.

In 1857 he retired in the rank of the actual state councilor and went abroad to undergo treatment. Having returned, he settled down in Taganrog. He died suddenly on December, 8th (20), 1868 and was laid down to rest in Taganrog.

Tags: Nestor Kukolnik Russian literature Russian writers   

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