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Absract: Yury Lotman introduced the thought-provoking idea that the plot of Pushkin’s poem “Angelo” evokes the popular nineteenth-century Russian legend about the emperor Alexander I; namely, that Alexander I had not died in 1825, but changed his name and kept living as a hermit (starets) in Siberia. The article aims at answering the question whether Angelo, in his turn, is modeled after the emperor Nicholas I. The article answers this question in the affirmative. Whereas Duke might be seen as an allusion to Alexander I, the character of Angelo is a cryptographic image of Nicholas I. Pushkin’s use of crypto-poetics can be accounted for by the fact that, back then, the poet was much obliged to the tsar and was in no position to openly critiсize him.
Keywords: poetics, politics, Pushkin, Shakespeare, “Angelo”, poem, Alexander I, Nicholas I
DOI: 10.31857/S241377150003059-7
Pages: 22-35
Author: Sergej A. Kibalnik
Information about the author: Leading Researcher. Affiliation: Institute of Russian Literature (the Pushkin House) RAS Address: Makarov Embankment 4, St. Petersburg, 199034, Russia

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