AS Griboyedov can be called a phenomenon of Russian literature.
Phenomenal was his way to the domestic literary Olympus. Griboyedov overcame him with one comedy in his hands, so much so that even Pushkin, who at that time reigned supreme in Russian literature, bluntly admitted: this play “suddenly” put the name of its creator on the list of the first poets of Russia.
Phenomenal was the fate of the Griboedov comedy, which quickly conquered the reading space, bypassing the official channels of entering cultural life. Even before the work was allowed to be put on stage and printed in full, the admiring public spread his manuscript, according to the words of the writer I. A. Goncharov, “scattered all the salt and wisdom of the play in colloquial speech” to shreds, verses, , thereby making it a part of their daily life.
Phenomenal was the texture of this work, due to the unusual synthesis of traditions and innovation, an amazing mixture of colors of different art palettes, and therefore did not fit into any of the literary trends of the early XIX century. And to this day Griboedov’s play stands apart in Russian literary classics.
The personality of the writer was finally phenomenal. AS Griboedov was not only a brilliant playwright, but also an able musician, an outstanding diplomat, a polyglot and an erudite. He belonged to the circle of the most brilliant people of his time and, undoubtedly, he could achieve a great deal in various fields of activity, if fate was to him as benevolent as nature, generously endowed him with talents…
AS Griboyedov came from an old noble family. About the children’s and youth’s years of the writer has not been very well-verified, therefore this period of his biography is full of gaps and speculation. It is not known when he was born – in 1790 or in 1795, at what age he entered the University noble boarding school and Moscow University, how many faculties he graduated from… According to one version, from the age of eleven to thirteen years Alexander was educated at the verbal department of the Faculty of Philosophy ; in the next two years he passed an educational course at the ethical-political department, and then for a few more years studied mathematics and natural sciences. From this it follows that for six and a half years a phenomenally young student mastered three specialties, acquired the degree of candidate of verbal sciences and was preparing for a doctorate, which prevented the Patriotic War of 1812. However, this is only a hypothesis, which to date has not been documented. It is established only that from 1806 to 1808 Griboedov was a student at the verbal faculty and that after the invasion of Napoleon’s troops in Russia he registered as an officer in the militia.
From this time on, the writer’s biography acquires greater clarity and factual validity. Griboedov did not succeed in fighting with the French, since the regiment in which he was stationed was in the rear. After the end of the war, Alexander did not hurry to part with his officer’s uniform and for several years served as adjutant in Belarus. From there he brought to Petersburg the comedy “Young Spouses”, translated from the French language and not without success placed on the metropolitan stage. In subsequent years, Griboyedov as a co-author participated in writing a few more plays. So in his life burst romance scaffolding, behind-the-scenes intrigues, communication with talented writers and connoisseurs of the theater. However, the passion for the theater did not prevent Griboyedov from performing impeccably in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which required absolutely different qualities from him,
The writer’s youth was stormy and carefree. “With its inexhaustible gaiety and sharpness everywhere,” remembered the faithful comrade Griboyedov, SN Begichev, “when he got into the circle of young people, he was their soul.” The same gaiety of spirit prompted him to seek pleasure in noisy entertainment, hearty adventures and mischievous antics. It was said that somehow during the divine service in the Catholic church Griboedov, sitting down for the organ, first long performed solemn spiritual music, and then suddenly played an incendiary Russian dance.
However, in 1817 another adventure ended tragically, which had a sobering effect on the young rake. Innocent at first intrigue – the rivalry of two comrades for the location of a famous ballerina – took an unpleasant turn when the desperate bully A. Yakubovich intervened, which brought the confrontation of his friends to a duel, and at the same time summoned Griboedov, who took the side of one of the participants in the conflict. Both duels were to be held in one day. First they were shot by the quarreling rivals. One of them, Sheremetiev, was fatally wounded, and this caused the next pair of duelists to postpone their fight. Nevertheless, the next day, Yakubovich as the main instigator of scandalous history was arrested and deported to the Caucasus. Griboedov’s official punishment escaped, but secular society recognized him as indirectly guilty of the death of his comrade, and he himself had a hard time experiencing what had happened. According to Pushkin’s remark, after this incident the writer “felt the need to reckon once and for all with his youth and turn life abruptly,” “say goodbye to Petersburg and idle absentmindedness.” Therefore, when the authorities, who considered it necessary to remove the official involved in the scandal from St. Petersburg, suggested that Griboyedov go to the diplomatic service abroad, he readily agreed. He was given the opportunity to choose between Persia and the United States. After some hesitation, the...
In August 1818 the writer left for the East. Along the way, he stayed for almost a year in Tiflis, where he made friends with General Ermolov, the famous hero of the war of 1812 and the actual dictator of the Caucasus. There was also a postponed duel with Yakubovich, during which Griboyedov was wounded in the arm.
Upon his arrival in Persia, the writer dealt with the solution of the most complicated diplomatic problems and… he conceived the idea of the comedy “Woe from Wit”. On the text itself, he worked during the years 1823-1824. in Tiflis, where he served for some time under the leadership of Ermolov, and in the village with friends, where he spent part of the vacation.
Having finished the comedy, Griboyedov tried to promote her to the press and on stage. But the censorship did not miss the works, which obviously smacked a scandal: its accusatory tone was too harsh, the types of representatives of the high society depicted in it seemed to be too recognizable. In the almanac “Russian Thalia for 1825” managed to print only a few excerpts from the comedy. However, the full text of the manuscript was copied and diverged across the country in thousands of copies. In St. Petersburg, the lucky author was barely able to accept proposals to read his work. “Thunder, noise, admiration, curiosity there is no end,” Griboyedov wrote in those days. He became famous.
In May 1825 Griboyedov again went to Georgia – this time through Kiev and the Crimea. On the Crimean peninsula, he spent three months, during which he got acquainted with natural, historical and cultural attractions in detail. In January 1826, the writer reached the fortress of Grozny, where he was overtaken by an order to arrest him in connection with the suspicion of involvement in the conspiracy of the Decembrists. Griboyedov was brought to St. Petersburg for an inquiry lasting four months and ending with his full justification. Until now, there remains a mystery with which such an outcome of the matter was connected: to the lack of serious evidence of the writer’s participation in the Decembrist movement, to his real innocence to the secret society or to the intercession of I. Paskevich, a wealthy and influential relative, who was in the darlings of Nicholas I. How whatever it was,
Meanwhile, a war broke out between Russia and Persia. Griboedov took part in the fighting, and in peace negotiations. It was he who made the final version of the extremely profitable Turkmanchai Peace Treaty, for which in 1828 he received a generous reward and the post of ambassador to Persia. However, the writer, who had already realized his literary mission, was not too happy about the transition to a new stage of the career ladder. Before his next trip to Persia, he wrote to his friend: “Everything that I have been doing so far has been done by strangers.” My call is a cabinet life, my head is full, and I feel the need to write. “
On the way to the place of service Griboyedov made a stop in Tiflis. Here he was married to his beloved girl – the daughter of the famous Georgian poet Alexander Chavchavadze, princess Nina Chavchavadze. A month later the young people, accompanied by their retinue and a large caravan, went to Persia.
Crossing the Persian border, they stopped in Tabriz, where Griboyedov successfully held the necessary negotiations. Soon, the case required him to travel to Tehran. Nina Alexandrovna had to wait for her husband in Tabriz. They said goodbye for a while, but parted, as it turned out, for good: a month later Griboedov died tragically in Tehran while performing official duties.
AS Griboyedov passed away in the prime of his life. But in the history of Russian culture he left a deep mark. And not only as the creator of one of the masterpieces of nineteenth-century Russian literature, but also as a person who, in the words of VG Belinsky, belonged to “the most powerful manifestations of the Russian spirit.”