Few people who had read Moydodyr (Wash’em Clean) or Mukha-Tsokotukha (Buzzy-Wuzzy Busy Fly) being kids, found out later that these classic verses for children were written by a famous Russian literature theorist and outstanding academic specialist studying the creative work of Nikolay Nekrasov. Nikolay Korneychukov was not a child of fortune. “Illegitimate child having no nationality,” the son of a peasant woman from Poltava would write in his autobiography. When Nikolay went in for literary activities, he divided his mother’s surname into two parts and added a cooked-up patronymic name to it. The resulting name sounded Korney Ivanovich Chukovsky. A writer with wooden name, as Soviet poet Andrey Voznesensky put it. As we are aware today, quarter of all known verses by Nikolay Nekrasov were introduced in literature by famous scientist Korney Chukovsky. Moreover, back in 1920s he discovered and published prose by Nekrasov: The Life and Adventures of Tikhon Trosnikov, Thin Man and other novels and stories. Chukovsky’s monograph Nekrasov’s Masterhood came out in 1952, and was reprinted many times, while the author was awarded with the Lenin Prize for it.
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