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Eugene Onegin : a novel in verse by…

Eugene Onegin : a novel in verse (1832)

by Alexander Pushkin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Eugene Onegin (1)

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Showing 1-5 of 27 (next | show all)
A wonderful novel from early 19th century Russia, translated into clear and readable English prose in this edition. The narrator is a minor character and keeps us entertained throughout, with a great variety of tone and digression, but always coming back to the main story. The story is intensely Russian - vastness of sky and countryside, contrast between country and city, country customs, fashionable society in town, ways to avoid boredom or to succumb to it, family entertainments, love-hate relations with France and the French, memorable characters, even the minor ones - and packs a wonderful story into less than 150 pages. Amid all this, the central love story, between Onegin and Tatiana, is told with delicacy, beauty and psychological insight. Definitely one to re-read. ( )
  Giraldus_Papyrus | Jan 26, 2014 |
Евгений Онегин это моя любимая романтическая поэма​, равный Байрона Дон Жуан, на котором он частично ​Onegin is a cross between Byron and Wordsworth--an utterly great poem, and what is rare in any long poem, a gripping narrative. Elton's my favorite translation, half a century ago:
The less we love her, when we woo her,
The more we please a woman's heart,
And are the surer to undo her
And snare her with beguiling art.
Men once extolled cold-blooded taking
As the true science of love-making,
Your own trump everywhere you blew...

And it strikes me as quite close to the Russian: yes, Pushkin's "heart"
isn't in line two, but four; but Pushikin's хладнокровны
doesn't modify "debauch"--probably an English addition in one translation.
Also, Elton has a feel for easy monosyllables and rhyme absent in the newer ones. After all, Pushkin was "translating" Byron, who would only have used "debauch" ironically.
I have imitated it in my own 65-pp Parodies Lost, yet to be published, though a few stanzas appear in my Westport Soundings, 1994, under the title "Onagain." It begins, "He knew--from a picture of Rod McKuen--/Of all his race, the poet makes/ The saddest face, and next to a hound/ The saddest sound. Despair, he found/ Came hardest on a sunny day/ With a butch haircut. But in the rain,/ Bedraggled, "Loneliness," he thought,/ "has wet me through." And going in / He wrote of going out again./ Though all alone, he never felt / At all poetic while he wrote."
Vikram Seth beat me to publishing his fine quasi-Pushkiny Golden Gate, though I began mine more than a decade earlier than his 1991.
As for Pushkin, I think the film Mozart stole from his play, Mozart and Salieri. And his Onegin is unprecedented in world literature, and remarkably uninfluencial in English--Seth and Powers aside. ( )
  AlanWPowers | Nov 5, 2013 |

This audio book is sheer delight. James E Falen’s verse is fluid, witty, full of charm. Stephen Fry’s reading is superb – unfolding the pleasures of the language with the same infectious relish he brings to his role of BBC game-show host.

Vladimir Nabokov said it was impossible to translate Eugene Onegin into verse that kept the rhyme scheme or the ‘bloom’ of the original. I’m in no position to argue, but I’m going to assume that Falen’s attempt approaches the impossible, and that the poem I’ve just had read to me is essentially Pushkin’s, and am not surprised that people compare him to Shakespeare.

I mainly listened to it while driving around the city, which means that for the first couple of hours of it I was negotiating traffic with a slack-jawed grin. Incredibly, the cheerful, witty urbanity of the first parts – where the death of a rich uncle, the ennui of endless Moscow balls, a dilettante’s reading habits, and the passion of a young man who today would be called am emerging poet are all subjects of light, ironic banter – gradually yields to a more serious tone. By the end, the sprightly ‘Onegin stanza’ – shorter lines than Shakespeare, lots of feminine rhymes – has proved suitable for telling of calamity, betrayal and despair. It’s a much smaller story than Anna Karenina, but I’ve got no doubt that Tolstoy read it, and I bet scholarly papers have been written about the relationship between the two works. ( )
  shawjonathan | Oct 28, 2013 |
If there ever was any character I related to more than any other in literature, it would be Tatiana; I love that she is not the typical heroine: quite, reflective, a reader, melancholy, passionate without loosing her senses, etc. And that Evgeny is an anti-hero; I don't think American audiences see a lot of them, but then maybe I haven't read enough. ...As for the story, I enjoyed the pain and suffering that plays out between Tatiana and Evgeny, leaving them parted from one another.

(The opera and movie versions are both good too.)
  VeritysVeranda | Sep 29, 2013 |
I first encountered this at Endellion, when we were singing the Tchaik adaptation. I'm fascinated by the way in which Pushkin uses himself as a narrator and character all at once; want to punch Onegin in the head; and am fairly unconvinced by Tatyana as a romantic heroine. I know, I know, total blasphemy, but there you have it.

I suspect this may be the first appearance of the Meg Murry type in literature, which bears examination -- the quiet, bookish, outsider who is so prized by writers like myself as characters we identified with.

The notes in this version range from utterly inadequate to stunningly obvious. It's better than the Constance Garrett translation, but that's like saying a root canal is better than death by drowning. ( )
  cricketbats | Apr 18, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 27 (next | show all)
Stanley Mitchell's new verse translation relishes this (Byron's) influence, but there's far more to this poem and Mitchell conjures the varied tones, the changes of pace, the vivid descriptions in language that echo and parallel the driving rhythms and rhymes of the original - "The pistols glistened; soon the mallets / Resoundingly on ramrods flicked, / Through cut-steel barrels went the bullets". In the end, the power of Pushkin's masterpiece lies in its fast-paced and wonderfully balanced storyline and in the interplay between Onegin and Tatiana. The latter, "Russian to the core", is repeatedly linked to the traditions and landscapes of an older, more intuitive Russia, in fierce contrast to the sophisticated posturings of Onegin.

» Add other authors (103 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Alexander Pushkinprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Agt, F.J. vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Boland, HansTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Feinstein, ElainePrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Johnston, Charlessecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Johnston, Sir CharlesTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jonker, W.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Keil, Rolf-DietrichTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nabokov, VladimirTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stekelenburg, L.H.M. vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Timmer, Charles B.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Pétri de vanité il avait encore plus de cette espèce d'orgueil qui fait avouer avec la même indifférence les bonnes comme les mauvaises actions, suite d'un sentiment de supériorité, peut-être imaginaire.
Tiré d'une lettre particullère

[Steeped in vanity, he had moreover the particular sort of pride that makes one acknowledge with equal indifference both his good and evil actions, a consequence of a sense of superiority, perhaps imaginary. From a private letter.] (Falen translation)
Not thinking of the proud world's pleasure,
But cherishing your friendship's claim,
I would have wished a finer treasure
To pledge my token to your name--
One worthy of your soul's perfection,
The sacred dreams that fill your gaze,
Your verse's limpid, live complexion,
Your noble thoughts and simple ways.
But let it be. Take this collection
Of sundry chapters as my suit:
Half humorous, half pessimistic,
Blending the plain and idealistic--
Amusement's yield, the careless fruit
Of sleepless nights, light inspirations
Born of my green and withered years . . .
The intellect's cold observations,
The heart's reflections, writ in tears.

[Originally addressed to Pushkin's friend and publisher P. A. Pletnyov.] (Falen translation)
To Véra
First words
'My uncle, man of firm convictions...
By falling gravely ill, he's won
A due respect for his afflictions--
The only clever thing he's done.
(James E. Falen translation)
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0192838997, Paperback)

Eugene Onegin is the master work of the poet whom Russians regard as the fountainhead of their literature. Set in 1820s Russia, Pushkin's verse novel follows the fates of three men and three women. Engaging, full of suspense, and varied in tone, it also portrays a large cast of other characters and offers the reader many literary, philosophical, and autobiographical digressions, often in a highly satirical vein. Eugene Onegin was Pushkin's own favourite work, and this new translation conveys the literal sense and the poetic music of the original.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:50:32 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

A new translation of an 1830s Russian novel, written in verse. The hero is Eugene, a bored young man who courts Tatyana, the heroine, and when she falls in love rejects her. But he will pay for it.

» see all 4 descriptions

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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