The estate of ZakharovoRussian: Захарово is part of the A. S. Pushkin State Historical and Literary Open-Air MuseumRussian: Gosudarstvennyi istoriko-literaturnyi muzey-zapovednik A. S. Pushkina or Государственный историко-литературный музей-заповедник А. С. Пушкина, which comprises the former estates in the villages of Bolshiye VyazyomyRussian: Большие Вяземы and Zakharovo. Pushkin, the founder of Russian literature and of the modern Russian language, lived in Zakharovo until he turned seven.
The estate of Zakharovo, located in the Odintsovsky DistrictRussian: Odintsovskiy rayon or Одинцовский район of the Moscow RegionRussian: Moskovskaya oblast or Московская область, 54 km to the west of Moscow, contains a mansion, annexes, an old pond and a park. It is along these alleys that the young Alexander Pushkin once strolled. The Golitsyn PalaceRussian: Golitsynskiy dvorets or Голицынский дворец and the park, featuring over 20 historical and cultural monuments, (dating from the 18th-19th centuries) is situated at the estate of Vyazyomy, 5 km from Zakharovo.
Historical overview of the estate
People have lived in the VyazyomkaRussian: Вяземка River basin for centuries. Near the village of Zakhrovo, archaeologists found an artificial burial mound dating back to the 12th or 13th century. The patrimony of voyevodamilitary leader in Ancient Russia Kamynin was the first major estate in this region. This became known as the estate of Zakharovo, which was first mentioned in 17th-century area maps created during the reign of Tsar Alexis Ithe tsar of Russia from 1645 until his death in 1676 of Russia.
In 1781, artillery captain Ilya Yakovlevich Tinkov became the new owner of the village of Zakharovo, which then consisted of 13 households of 130 peasants. The manor house was a two-storey solid building with annexes and outbuildings. Stables, a garden planted with fruit trees and a park were also part of the estate. At the end of 1804, Tinkov’s widow sold the estate to Mariya Alekseyevna Gannibal, the granddaughter of Abram Gannibal (who would subsequently be immortalised in Pushkin’s ‘The Moor of Peter the Greatruled from 1682 until 1725‘), for 28,000 rubles. Her daughter Nadezhda Osipovna Pushkina brought her children here the following summer.
Alexander Pushkin’s grandmother lived in Zakharovo from 1804 to 1811 and sold it to a relative when 12-year-old Alexander entered the Tsarskoye Selo LyceumRussian: Tsarskoselskiy litsey or Царскосельский лицей. After the Russian Revolution of 1917, the estate gradually fell into ruin.
Alexander Pushkin was six years old when he came to Zakharovo for the first time. According to his relatives, the previously shy boy changed a lot in the countryside. Influenced by his close communication with those who lived in Zakharovo and nature, he became strong, curious and adventurous, whilst retaining his sensitive and dreamy side. His parents paid little attention to their son, and Alexander was brought up by his grandmother. The latter directed the young boy’s energy towards studying the beauty and the wealth of the Russian language, told him stories about his family and taught him to appreciate the Russian language and folk stories.
The very atmosphere of the estate and its surroundings was a strong influence on Pushkin, and nature and his relationship with it would become one of the main subjects in his literary works. Pushkin is as dear to Russians today as he was back in his time, and the present-day village of Zakharovo with its renovated mansion, well-groomed park and monuments demonstrates how relevant Pushkin’s work and life remain to the Russian people.
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The mansion, in which Pushkin once lived, no longer exists. A replica of the original building was constructed in the same place where the original once stood in the early 20th century. In Soviet times, it served as a soldier community, a juvenile prison, as well as many other functions. It burned down in 1993. Restorers used the remnants of the old foundations and partition walls to reconstruct the mansion. Though it is not the house in which Pushkin spent every summer, it is certainly a very good representation of what life would have been like for the young author.
The museum features authentic exhibits dating back to the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The vast living room adorned with old pieces of furniture is the centre of the estate, the place that once brought the whole family together. Overall, the mansion provides great insight into the lifestyle of countryside Russian nobility. The children’s room is cozily furnished with a writing desk and a bookcase filled with books published during Pushkin’s time. Pushkin was very fond of reading, and he read books not only in Russian, but also in French, a language he mastered so well that his family and friends jokingly called him the ‘Frenchman’. The beautifully furnished study of his grandmother Mariya Alekseyevna displays many rare objects, including old icons and documents, a handicraft table and an antiquarian mirror. The real highlight, however, is not so much the mansion and its rooms as the whole territory of this open-air museum that deeply marked the character and talent of the greatest of all Russian poets.© 2016-2019 moscovery.com