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RUSSIAN EXILES, BULGARIA: Словарь къ твореніямъ Достоевскаго не должно отчаяваться [Slovarʹ kʺ tvorenìâmʺ Dostoevskago. Ne dolžno otčaâvatʹsâ / Do not despair. The Dictionary of Dostoevsky’s creations].



An extremely rare first edition of an interpretation of the Russian Revolution predicted through Dostoyevsky’s work, printed in Sofia, Bulgaria in Russian language in 1921, was based on a manuscript, written in a prison in Galicia in 1919 by a Russian exile Metropolitan Anthony Khrapovitsky.

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This rare book in Russian language was printed in 1921 in Bulgaria by Russian-Bulgarian Publishing house, which was at the time specialised in prints for Russian exiles. The text for the book was written in 1919 by a bishop of the Russian Orthodox Church Antony Khrapovitsky, while he was imprisoned in Galicia by the Bolsheviks.

Anthony undertook large-scale experience of comprehending contemporary tragic events of the two Russian revolutions and the civil war, through the prism of the prophetic works of Fyodor Dostoyevsky. According to both authors, the only solution for the peace in Russia is an order of Christianity. 

The author, Antony Khrapovitsky (Митрополит Антоний, 1863 –1936), was a bishop of the Russian Orthodox Church in the Russian Empire, the Metropolitan of Kiev and Galicia. He was arrested by the Bolsheviks in December of 1918 and was sent to captivity to the Basilian monastery in Buchach in Galicia (now Ukraine).

Right after being sent to captivity, Anthony started working on a book, to keep his mind clear and kill time. “I’m even pleased” he wrote in a joke, referring on finally finding time to write, and suggested his jail mate, Archbishop Eulogius Georgiyevsky (Eulogius of Paris), to write his memoires to make the difficult times in prison easier. (Я даже доволен, по крайней мере имею возможность писать, этого мне не запрещают, а вот владыка Евлогий скучает, я ему советую писать хотя бы воспоминания и то будет легче).

After the Polish took over Galicia, he was transferred to a monastery near Krakow, from where he was eventually released after negotiations with French diplomacy. After moving through Lwow and Istanbul, Anthony settled in Sremski Karlovci, in Serbia, where he became a respected leader of the Russian Orthodox Church in exile. He is buried in Belgrade.

We could only find one example of the book in libraries worldwide (The British Library, OCLC 749010808). The book was reprinted in Moscow in 1998 (Russkaâ istoriko-filologičrskaâ škola Slovo)

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