n Slavic Almanac : The South African Journal for Slavic, Central and Eastern European Studies - Zabolotsky and Africa

Volume 17, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1025-3386


The article considers the little-known piece of Zabolotsky's early prose, his adaptation of letters by Iakov Ivanovich Chabrov (1883-1853), a medical doctor who for many years worked in Equatorial Africa. The book, entitled and illustrated by the painter Nicolai Lapshin, was meant to be a 'Reader for children'. It appeared in print in 1928. Its author was identified by the surname Beiul, and for this reason it failed to be associated with Zabolotsky. As it became known recently, Beiul is the surname of Chabrov's sister, Maria Ivanovna Beiul (1875-1942), who was the actual addressee of the letters. It is assumed that the work on the reader came to Zabolotsky thanks to his friendship with the Leningrad (now St. Peterburg) artists, N. Lapshin and A. Pakhomov who, in turn, were friends with Olga Pavlovna Beiul, an actress in the Leningrad Theatre for the Young Spectator and the daughter of Maria Beiul (Galperina 1901-1984).

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