The nature of the Caucasus as perceived by Russian romantics and exiled Polish poets

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Maria Filina
Danuta Ossovska


The Caucasus in a poetic aspect was opened to the Russian reader by romantic writers -- A.S. Pushkin, A.S. Griboyedov, M.Yu. Lermontov, Decembrist poets.

The nature of the Caucasus became a source of romantic inspiration, a kind of East, which was a necessary component for all poets of that period.

In fact, at the same time or one decade later, after the uprising in Poland, thousands of its participants, also members of secret Polish national liberation organizations were exiled to the Caucasus after the uprising in Poland. The exiles created in Georgia, in fact, a branch of Polish romantic poetry, in the years 1830-1850. the so-called group of "Caucasian poets" functioned.

Undoubtedly,, the perception of the Caucasus by Russian and Polish authors contains many common features that are defined by the philosophy and poetics of romanticism. However, there are also undoubted differences.

The nature of the Caucasus is admired by Russian poets, the mountains are a symbol of greatness and beauty. Polish authors, of course, also poeticize the mountains, many of the exiles saw them for the first time and are amazed at the grandeur of the harsh nature.

But a different feeling prevails among them. The exiles were sent to the Caucasian War, hundreds died in campaigns and battles. For Polish poets, the mountains of the Caucasus often evoke feelings of anxiety, sadness, and anxiety . They realize that they have been torn out of their native environment forever and are forced to participate in a war that they consider unjust.

The image of Prometheus is given a new interpretation by the "Caucasians" - one of the cross-cutting ones in their work. It is projected onto personal destiny. Prometheus is perceived not as a hero who made people fire; in his figure one can feel not a gigantic charge of achievement, but precisely the fact of captivity and dependence. That is, the first part of the myth is, as it were, taken out of the brackets, is not present in the text and even in the mind. The main thing in the myth is the tragic side of the consequences of the heroic deed - punishment.

Published: Nov 14, 2022

Article Details

“West – East” Dichotomy and Russian Culture: Literary and Cultural Paradigms