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Aleksandr Trifonovich Tvardovsky

Born June 21, 1910(1910-06-21)
Zagorye, Russia
Died December 18, 1971 (aged 62)
Moscow, Russia,
Occupation Poet, Editor

Aleksandr Trifonovich Tvardovsky (Алекса́ндр Три́фонович Твардо́вский) (21 June[1] 1910—18 December 1971) was a Soviet poet, chief editor of Novy Mir literary magazine from 1950 to 1954 and 1958 to 1970.



Tvardovsky was born into a Russian family in Zagorye, Smolensk Governorate. Although born into a family of blacksmiths, his parents were dispossessed and banished. Having attending only four classes, he left the rural school because of poverty and entirely devoted himself to literature. He joined the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1940 and was a war correspondent during World War II. During the post-war years he served as editor of Novy Mir, an influential literary journal.

Tvardovsky fought hard to maintain the traditional independence Novy Mir had, even against official disapproval. During his editorship the magazine published Ilya Ehrenburg's Thaw in 1954, The Vologda Wedding by Aleksandr Yashin in 1962, and One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn in 1962.[2]

In 1970, Tvardovsky resigned from Novy Mir, although he was awarded the Order of the Red Banner "for services in the development of Soviet poetry" that same year and the State Prize for Literature in the year of his death, 1971, in Moscow.[2]

Tvardovsky received the Stalin Prize (USSR State Prize) (1941, 1946, 1947, 1971) and the Lenin Prize (1961) for the poem Expanse after Expanse (За далью - даль)).

Tvardovsky's grave at the Novodevichy Convent in Moscow as it was in March 1973. The grave was near Khrushchev's but is impossible to find now because of the large size of Khrushchev's memorial

Vasili Tyorkin

His most popular poem was Vasili Tyorkin (Василий Тёркин, also known as A book about a Soldier, "Книга про бойца") (1941-1945) about an ordinary but not so ordinary soldier in the Great Patriotic War. Filled with humor, the poem was a hymn of optimism and resourcefulness of the Russian soldier. It was surprisingly non-politicized, down-to-Earth, and intentionally devoid of any picturesque heroism. It was printed chapter by chapter and immediately sent to the front in newspapers and magazines.


Tvardovsky's World War II-themed poem "A House on the Road" was the basis for Valery Gavrilin's 1985 ballet of the same name.

A minor planet 3261 Tvardovskij discovered by Soviet astronomer Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh in 1979 is named after him. [3]

Alternate spelling

Russia-2000-stamp-Aleksandr Tvardovsky.jpg

His name in English has also been rendered:

  • Aleksandr Trifonovich Tvardovski
  • Aleksandr Tvardovski
  • Alexander Tvardovsky

"Aleksandr Tvardovsky" is by far the most common spelling.


  1. ^ 8th of June "Old Style" (OS)
  2. ^ a b 1972 Britannica Book of the Year (covering events of 1971), "Obituaries 1971" article, page 532, "Tvardovski, Aleksandr Trifonovich" item
  3. ^ Dictionary of Minor Planet Names - p.271

External links




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