Anthology of Russian Literature from the Earliest Period to the Present Time - Vol. 2

By Leo Wiener | Go to book overview
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PREFACE

CONSIDERATIONS of space compel me to give but a small selection of authors from the last two decades of the nineteenth century, while some of the writers, here omitted, of the beginning of this period have been previously treated in the first volume of the Anthology. For the intermediate time, the material here offered will be found sufficiently complete, while the essays of Byelínski, Dobrolyúbov, Písarev, and Merezhkóvski illustrate the evolution of Russian literature in the nineteenth century, as viewed by the Russian critics themselves.

The introductory sketch is not intended as a preliminary exposition of the Anthology, but as a résumé of all the matter contained there; it will, therefore, be best perused after the extracts and biographical sketches of the separate authors have become familiar to the reader. To avoid undue annotations, literary allusions have not been mentioned in the footnotes; they may readily be discovered by turning to the Index, where all cross references are given.

During the preparation of the second volume, the interesting discovery was made that not Sir John Bowring, but William D. Lewis, an American, was the first to render Russian poetry into English; thus, the Stanzas given on p. 394 of vol. i. originally appeared in the National Gazette and Literary Register of Philadelphia, on January 31, 1821, while other poems seem to have been translated by him much earlier.

I again wish to express my thanks to the authors and publishers by whose permission translations are here reproduced, and to my colleague, Prof. F. N. Robinson, who has patiently read through these pages and given me his advice.

-v-

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