Alexei Tolstoy was born 140 years ago

Today is the 140th anniversary of the birth of Alexei Nikolaevich Tolstoy. His emigration from revolutionary Russia and his return became the basis of the trilogy “Walking Through the Torments”. Alexei Tolstoy worked in many genres. He devoted several volumes to Rus’ of the Petrine era, gave the Soviet children the mischievous, resilient Pinocchio and became the founder of Russian science fiction, writing Aelita and Engineer Garin’s Hyperboloid. The creative path of the writer – in the material of the correspondent of “MIR 24” Alexei Zhidkikh.

The death mask of Pushkin, the lifetime mask of Peter the Great, next to the portrait of the emperor. Wherever Alexei Tolstoy lived, these, like many other favorite things, he always placed in his office. The situation here has always remained unchanged. It was necessary for work.

Aleksey Tolstoy always wrote while standing at the desk, here he sketched the text with a pen. Then, with this very sheet, he went to the table, where he tapped out what was written by hand on a typewriter. He always worked in the morning and believed that he should write at least two pages a day.

Tolstoy wrote the first part of the trilogy “Walking Through the Torments” – the novel “Sisters” while still in exile. After the October Revolution, fleeing either from hunger or from terror, the writer fled to Paris. But, obviously, he loved Russia too much, and he needed any of it. In the early 1920s, after making a short trip to the USSR and meeting with an unexpectedly warm welcome, he decided to return forever. This, of course, was a very big risk, but in the end justified. Tolstoy became a major Soviet writer, second only to Gorky. And when he died – the first.

To publish The Sisters, Tolstoy had to remake the novel, as required by Soviet realities.

“The writer edited Peter the Great more than once. There are parallels between Peter and Stalin in the novel, both of them builders of a new state,” said A.N. Tolstoy Galina Vorontsova.

Tolstoy wrote the best novel about the Petrine era. Even the exacting Ivan Bunin, who did not like his friend, after reading “Peter the Great”, sent an enthusiastic telegram to the author from abroad.

“Alyoshka, the third Tolstoy! Although you, of course, are a bastard, but a talented writer. Keep up the good work!” Bunin wrote.

Tolstoy lived in Soviet Russia and, in fact, like a count or a gentleman. He had three cars, servants, a luxurious dacha in Barvikha. He was called the “Red Count”, the Epicurean, the “Soviet Gargantua” – the writer loved wide feasts. Tolstoy lived in a big way, but at the same time he helped many, and literary work was his physical need.

When the Great Patriotic War began, Tolstoy wrote a lot for the front. The famous slogan “For the Motherland, for Stalin” was invented by him. The writer knew how to arouse both love for his country and hatred for the enemy. But he never saw Victory, he died of cancer on February 23, 1945. On that day, mourning was declared throughout the country.

Alexei Tolstoy is perhaps the most controversial figure among Russian writers. For some, he is a soulless cynic and opportunist who glorified Stalin in the novel “Bread”, for others – a victim of circumstances or a person who sincerely believed in the Soviet Union. The writer took the “Golden Key” to the solution with him. But few would argue that in terms of talent he is equal to another Count Tolstoy.

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