(1792 – 1878)
Vyazemsky Petr Andreevich (1792 – 1878), poet, prose writer. Born July 12 (23 N. s.) In Moscow in a wealthy noble family. The genus of princes Vyazemsky led from the descendants of Monomakh.
He received a wonderful home education, from 1805 he studied at the St. Petersburg Jesuit boarding school. In 1806 he returned to Moscow and took private lessons from professors of Moscow University.
Since 1807, remained an orphan, was in the care of his relative, writer and historian N. Karamzin (married to Vyazemsky’s elder sister), whose house was the center of cultural life, where historians, philosophers, writers, including future Decembrists gathered.
Enrolled in the Land Office, Vyazemsky gave more time to literary hobbies and social life. He prefers small verse genres – writes elegy, messages, poems in the album. At the same time he writes epigrams, fables.
During the war, 1812 joined the nobility and took part in the battle of Borodino. After the war he served in Warsaw. Hoping for changes in the state structure of Russia, he took part in the compilation of a note to the tsar on the liberation of the peasants (1820). He participated in the drafting of the constitution, communicated with freedom-loving circles of the Polish nobility and future Decembrists.
In 1821 – 29, suspended from service for the opposition sentiments, he lived in Moscow and in the patrimonial estate near Moscow Ostafyevo. He dedicates himself to literary and journalistic activities, he approaches with Pushkin, the Decembrists. Vyazemsky’s lyrics are changing, public interests are acting, personal and civil themes merge: elegy “Resentment,” “Despondency,” “First Snow.” He becomes a propagandist of romanticism.
Sharing the views of the Decembrists, he did not share their revolutionary methods, so he did not become a participant in the insurrection. I wanted to influence the government with a word, conviction. This did not prevent Vyazemsky from resolutely condemning the repression against the Decembrists. In 1830 he became an employee of the Literary Newspaper Delvig and Pushkin, and later Pushkin’s Sovremennik.
In the same year he was enlisted to serve as an official special assignments for the Ministry of Finance (until 1855). In 1856-58 he was a friend of the Minister of Education; headed censorship. Was close to the royal court.
After the French Revolution of 1848, Vyazemsky’s views changed, he increasingly disagreed with the present, laughing at revolutionary youth. This was due to the fall of the nobility’s revolutionary spirit and the emergence of the raznochintsy Democrats on the public arena, with whom he could no longer find a common language.
In those years he published a book about D. Fonvizin, historical essays on Moscow, memoirs, the poem “Holy Russia”, imbued with hostility to the revolution and loyalty to the monarchy.
His late lyrical poems reflected the sad mood of the poet, who felt his gap with modernity.
The last twenty years of his life, Vyazemsky lived abroad, fully experiencing social and spiritual loneliness.
November 10 (22 N. s.) 1878 in Baden-Baden Vyazemsky died. He was buried in Petersburg.
A short biography from the book: Russian writers and poets. A short biographical dictionary. Moscow, 2000.