2016. № 1 (7), 566-581

DePaul University


Poetics of F. I Tyutchev’s early poem “Alight with the Fire of Freedom” (1820) also known as an epistle “On Pushkin’s Ode to Freedom.” (“K ode Pushkina na Vol’nost’”) signifies its authors as a future master of versification. The poem’s means, especially those related to sound, are as well characteristic of Tyutchev later work. The Tyutchev Epistle provides an analysis and interpretation of Pushkin text and borrows some lexics and means of word and sound development. This study has its purpose in finding the degree of Tyutchev’s innovation versus continuity in his poem. For both Pushkin and Tyutchev, the exact time is unknown when the poems were created. Neither of them was publish in the lifetime of its author. In both of them, there is a poetic dialogue with their predessessors. Our study offers to add a few new sources of intertextuality in them. In particular, the study points at Tyutchev borrowing a lexical formula created by V.P. Petrov in his long poem (“Aeneus”) based on Virgil’s “The Aeneid.” It is common to make comparison between Pushkin and N.A. Radishchev’s “Ode on Freedom” (1781-3). We also compare Pushkin and Tyutchev Odes with V.V. Kapnist odes (1783 and 1786).

Tyutchev’s borrowings from Kapnist in his Epistle means, in a way, that he indicates the path Pushkin followed to creat his ode somewhat oriented on his (Pushkin’s) predesessors in the genre of ode dedicated to the theme of freedom. There are some poetic devices in Pushkin that Tyutchev revealed and creatively developed in his own piece. What attracts our attention in Pushkin ode is importance of sound connections on the compositional level. In Tyutchev, examples of word-and-sound combinatorics аre to be understood as a result of his analytical interpretation of Pushkin Ode, which he incorporated creatively in his own epistle They are related of course not to the entire Pushkin ode in its entirety but to the strophes and lines that attracted his attention, since there is no way of comparing a multistanzaic composition (12 strophes, 8 lines each, in Pushkin) with a two-dozen line composition in Tyutchev. In conclusion, due to Tyutchev’s high sensitivity to language, intonation and phonetics, his poetic interpretation of other’s texts, not limited to their theme or semantics, usually becomes a complex commentary, which is true in the case of his epistle «Оn Pushkin’s Ode to Freedom”.