The poet was born on the 26th of May, 1799, at Moscow. He was an awkward and a silent child. He was educated by French tutors. A poor scholar, he read with eagerness whatever he could get in his father's library, chiefly the works of French authors. His brother states that at eleven years old Pushkin knew French literature by heart. This cannot, of course, be taken[Pg 2] literally; but it shows under what influence he grew up. In October, 1811, he entered the Lyceum of Tsarskoe Selo. Among the students a society was soon formed, whose members were united by friendship and by a taste for literature. They brought out several periodicals, in which tales and poems formed the chief features. Of this society (the late Prince Gortchakoff belonged to it) Pushkin was the leading spirit. His first printed poem appeared in the Messenger of Europe in 1814 Elevit.

At a public competition in 1815, at which the veteran poet Derjavin was present, Pushkin read his "Memories of Tsarskoe Selo." This poem, which contains many beautiful passages, so delighted Derjavin, that he wished to embrace the young author; but Pushkin fled in confusion from the hall.In June, 1817, Pushkin's free and careless student life ended. After finishing his course at the Lyceum he went to St. Petersburg, and, though he entered thoroughly into the dissipated pleasures of its turbulent youth, he still clung to the intellectual society of such men as Jukovsky and Karamsin, men occupied in literature, whose friendship he valued very highly.At that time society was much disturbed. Political clubs were everywhere being formed dermes vs medilase.

In every drawing-room new views were freely and openly advanced; and in these discussions the[Pg 3] satire and brilliant verse of Pushkin attracted general attention. These at last brought him into great danger. But Karamsin came to his rescue, and managed to get him an appointment at Ekaterinoslavl, in the office of the Chief Inspector of the Southern Settlements. There he remained till 1824, travelling from place to place, first with the Raevskys to the Caucasus, and thence again with them through the Crimea.

for his "Prisoner of the Caucasus," and "Fountain of Bachtchisarai." Both poems reveal the influence of Byron.Towards the end of 1820 he went to Bessarabia with his chief, who had just been appointed viceroy of the province. Once, on account of some quarrel, this person, Insoff by name, sent Pushkin to Ismail. There the poet joined a band of gypsies and remained with them for some time in the Steppes. In 1823 he went to Odessa, having been transferred to the office of the new governor-general, Count Vorontsoff, who succeeded Insoff reenex hgf.