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 Yevgeny Petrov

Born:   December 13, 1903
Deceased:   July 2, 1942

Russian Soviet writer, coauthor of Ilya Ilf


The name of Yevgeny Petrov is usually coupled with the name of his coauthor Ilya Ilf. These two writers have already been long perceived as one author in consciousness of the majority of their readers and admirers.

Yevgeny Petrov (his real name was Yevgeny Petrovitch Katayev) was born on December 13, 1903. Though a sibling of the writer Valentin Katayev, Yevgeny had a talent of a publicist, rather than a writer. Before meeting his future coauthor Yevgeny Petrov at first worked as a correspondent of the Ukrainian cable agency, and subsequently as an inspector of the criminal investigation department.

Having moved to Moscow, Yevgeny became a contributor to the Krasny Perets (Red Pepper) magazine. Very quickly he found legs in the capital city of Russia, and became a brilliant organizer and feuilleton author in the editorial board. His contemporaries remember the young man as a person having unusual comic imagination. This is when his nickname Petrov, coming from his patronymic name, appeared. 

From 1929 the Chudak magazine started to be published; Yevegeny Petrov was in charge of caricature ideas, epigram jokes and other funny minutiae. This is where Petrov got acquainted with Ilya Ilf, who was heading the department of reviews. Soon they started working together under one pseudonym for both: F. Tolstoyevsky (obviously derived from Tolstoy and Dostoevsky together).

Then came 10 years of fruitful cooperation that gave the world famous books, such as Twelve Chairs, Gold Calf, One-Storeyed America, and others. Unfortunately, in 1937 Ilya Ilf passed away, leaving Yevegeny Petrov alone as a writer again. Yevgeny wrote a few film scripts, and when World War II started he resumed his journalist activities. 
On July 2, 1942, while coming back by plane from the besieged Sevastopol to Moscow, Yevgeny Petrov was lost.


Tags: Yevgeny Petrov Russian Literature Ilf and Petrov   

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