Jewels in Her Crown: Treasures of Columbia University Libraries Special Collections

Exhibition Themes > History > 105. Alexander Bestuzhev

105.  Alexander Bestuzhev (1797-1837).  On Your Namesake Day. Yakutia, May 18, 1829. RBML, Bakhmeteff Archive, General Manuscript Collection, Bestuzhev

Alexander Alexandrovich Bestuzhev (pseudonym Marlinsky) was a military officer, popular writer, literary critic and poet. However, after participation in the Decembrist Revolt of 1825, his life dramatically changed. Bestuzhev was stripped of his noble status and exiled first to Siberia and then to the Caucasus. His prose and poetry were not published and his name was not mentioned until his death in 1837. In 1838 Bestuzhev's sister published his collective works. A multivolume set was sold out within weeks of its issue.

On Your Namesake Day was first published in this edition from an incomplete copy and wrongly dated 1828. The original has never been found and all later editions used the same incomplete copy.

Gift of Ekaterina G. Garina, 1964

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