УДК / UDK: 821.161.1.0

2021 №21

Author: Igor A. Vinogradov
About the author:

Igor A. Vinogradov, DSc in Philology, Director of Research, А.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 а, 121069 Moscow, Russia.


E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


An unknown fact of “deutero-author's” (“second-author's”) publications of two ethnographic notes by N.V. Gogol from his handwritten “Book of all sorts of things, or the handy Encyclopedia” (1826–1830) is introduced into scientific circulation. The publications appeared in 1832, anonymously, in three issues of F.V. Bulgarin’s newspaper “Northern Bee”. It is proved that the articles were published not by Gogol himself, but by his fellow countryman and friend, the writer O.M. Somov, with whom the writer then not only communicated, but also shared ethnographic materials. It is established that the content of the articles exactly corresponds to Gogol’s notes “On the Little Russian weddings” and “Little Russian legends, customs, rituals” in his “Book of all sorts of things...”. In addition to articles from Gogol's notebook, entitled “Observations in the Fatherland. Little Russians Wedding Ceremonies” and “Popular Beliefs. Mermaids” in the newspaper, several unknown publications by O.M. Somov in “Northern Bee” are revealed. In 1832, the newspaper published two of his stories: “Organist Tomasz”, “Dancers on the Rope”, as well as a translation of a fragment from “Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft” by W. Scott (1830), entitled “The Story of a Free Spirit-Seer”. The possible influence of “Organist Tomash” on the creation of Gogol's story “Taras Bulba” is noted. The study of Somov's journalistic activities as an employee of “Northern Bee” replenishes the history of the lifetime publications of Gogol's texts and opens a new page in the communication of two compatriot writers.

Keywords: Gogol, biography, creativity, ethnography, folklore, copyright, deuter authorship, plagiarism.
For citation:

Vinogradov, I.A. “‛Deutero-Gogol’s’: N.V. Gogol, O.M. Somov and the History of Two Articles in ‛Northern Bee’.” Literaturnyi fakt, no. 3 (21), 2021, pp. 196–219. (In Russ.) 


1. Averintsev, S. “Mikhail Bakhtin: retrospektiva i perspektiva. Retsenziia na: M.M. Bakhtin. Literaturno-kriticheskie stat'i. Sostavlenie S.G. Bocharova i V.V. Kozhinova. M. Izdatel'stvo ‛Khudozhestvennaia literatura’. 1986” [“Mikhail Bakhtin: Retrospective and Perspective. Review of: M.M. Bakhtin. Literary and Critical Articles. Compiled by S.G. Bocharov and V.V. Kozhinov. Moscow. Khudozhestvennaya literatura Publ., 1986”]. Druzhba narodov, no. 3, 1988, pp. 256–259. (In Russ.)

2. Bocharov, S.G., Deriugina, L.V. “Zhenshchina. Kommentarii” [“A Woman. Comment”]. Gogol', N.V. Polnoe sobranie sochinenii i pisem: v 23 t. [Complete Works and Letters: in 23 vols.], vol. 3: Arabeski. Raznye sochineniia N. Gogolia [Arabesques. Various Compositions by N. Gogol], text prep. by L.V. Deryugina, comm. by S.G. Bocharov, L.V. Deryugina. Moscow, Nauka Publ., 2009, pp. 907–917. (In Russ.)

3. Vinogradov, I.A. Gogol' — khudozhnik i myslitel': Khristianskie osnovy mirosozertsaniia [Gogol as an Artist and Thinker: Christian Foundations of the Worldview]. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., Nasledie Publ., 2000. 448 p. (In Russ.)

4. Vinogradov, I.A. “Kommentarii” [“Commentary”]. Gogol', N.V. Taras Bul'ba. Avtografy, prizhiznennye izdaniia. Istoriko-literaturnyi i tekstologicheskii kommentarii [Taras Bulba. Autographs, Lifetime Editions. Historical, Literary and Textual Commentary], prep. by I.A. Vinogradov. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., 2009, pp. 385–656. (In Russ.)

5. Vinogradov, I.A. Letopis' zhizni i tvorchestva N.V. Gogolja (1809–1852). Nauchnoe izdanie: v 7 t. [Chronicle of N.V. Gogol’s Life and Work (1809–1852). Scientific publication: in 7 vols.], vol. 2. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., 2017. 672 p. (In Russ.).

6. Vinogradov, I.A. N.V. Gogol' i tsenzura. Vzaimootnosheniia khudozhnika i vlasti kak kliuchevaia problema gogolevskogo naslediia [N.V. Gogol and Censorship. The Relationship Between Artist and Authorities as a Key Issue of Gogol's Heritage]. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., 2021. 864 p. (In Russ.)

7. Gogol', N.V. Polnoe sobranie sochinenii i pisem: v 17 t. (15 kn.) [Complete Works and Letters: in 17 vols. (15 books)]. Moscow, Kiev, Moskovskaya Patriarkhiya Publ., 2009–2010. (In Russ.)

8. Grech, N.I. Zapiski o moei zhizni [Notes on My Life], ed. and comm. by Ivanov-Razumnik and D.M. Pines. Moscow, Leningrad, Academia Publ., 1930. 896 p. (In Russ.)

9. Dmitrieva, E.V., Mann, Iu.V., Rogov, K.Iu. “Vechera na khutore bliz Dikan'ki. Kommentarii” [“Evenings on a Farm Near Dikanka. Comment”]. Gogol', N.V. Polnoe sobranie sochinenii i pisem: v 23 t. [Complete Works and Letters: in 23 vols.], vol. 1: Gants Kiukhel'garten. Vechera na khutore bliz Dikan'ki. Iunosheskie proizvedeniia [Hans Kuchelgarten. Evenings on a Farm Near Dikanka. Youth Works], text and comm. prep. by I.Yu. Vinnitsky, E.E. Dmitrieva, Yu.V. Mann, K.Yu. Rogov. Moscow, Nasledie Publ., 2001 (2nd ed., stereotyped — Moscow, Nauka Publ., IWL RAS Publ., 2003), pp. 589–850. (In Russ.)

10. Drozdov, N.A., Larionova, E.O. “Somov Orest Mikhailovich” [“Somov Orest Mikhaylovich”]. Russkie pisateli. 1800–1917. Biograficheskii slovar' [Russian Writers. 1800–1917. Biographical Dictionary], vol. 6, editor-in-chief B.F. Egorov. Moscow, Bol'shaia rossiiskaia entsiklopediia Publ., St. Petersburg, Nestor-istoriia Publ., 2019, pp. 7–10. (In Russ.)

11. Kulish, P.A. Zapiski o zhizni Nikolaia Vasil'evicha Gogolia, sostavlennye iz vospominanii ego druzei i znakomykh i iz ego sobstvennykh pisem. V dvukh tomakh. S portretom Gogolia [Notes on the Life of Nikolai Vasilyevich Gogol, Compiled from the Memoirs of His Friends and Acquaintances and from His Own Letters. In Two Volumes. With a Portrait of Gogol], vol. 1. St. Petersburg, V tipografii Aleksandra Iakobsona Publ., 1856. 339 p. (In Russ.)

12. Petrunina, N.N. “Orest Somov i ego proza” [“Orest Somov and His Prose”]. Somov, O.M. Byli i nebylitsy [Facts and Fables], comp., introd. and notes by N.N. Petrunina. Moscow, Sovetskaia Rossiia Publ., 1984, pp. 3–20. (In Russ.)

13. Reitblat, A.I. “Gogol' i Bulgarin. K istorii literaturnykh vzaimootnoshenii” [“Gogol and Bulgarin. On the History of Literary Relationships”]. Reitblat, A.I. Faddei Bulgarin: ideolog, zhurnalist, konsul'tant sekretnoi politsii [ Faddey Bulgarin: Ideologist, Journalist, Secret Police Consultant]. Moscow, Novoe literaturnoe obozrenie Publ., 2016, pp. 188–223. (In Russ.)

14. Riftin, B.L. “Otryvok iz kitaiskogo romana ‛Khau-Tsiu-dzhuan'’, to est' ‛Besprimernyi brak’. Kommentarii” [“An Excerpt from the Chinese Novel ‛Hau-Qiu-Juan’, that is, ‛Unprecedented marriage’. Commentary”]. Severnye tsvety na 1832 god [ Northern Flowers for 1832], publ. by L.G. Frezman. Moscow, Nauka Publ., 1980, pp. 344–349. (In Russ.)

15. Shenrok, V.I. “Opisanie rukopisei” [“Description of Manuscripts”]. Sochineniia N.V. Gogolia: v 7 t. Tekst sveren s sobstvennoruchnymi rukopisiami avtora i pervonachal'nymi izdaniiami ego proizvedenii N. Tikhonravovym i V. Shenrokom. 10-e izd. [N.V. Gogol’s Works: in 7 volumes. The Text is verified with the Author's Handwritten Manuscripts and Original Editions of His Works by N. Tikhonravov and V. Shenrok. 10th edition], vol. 7. St. Petersburg, Izdanie A.F. Marksa Publ., 1896, pp. 827–947. (In Russ.)