The Snow Maiden - The history of US literature of the XIX century

The Snow Maiden

A few stands apart among the works of Ostrovsky "The Snow Maiden", created in 1873. Its genre is usually defined as a folk drama, but more precisely it should be called a folk tragedy. At the heart of the plot conflict is the love of the cold Snow Maiden, the icy maiden, to the earthly man Mizgir, which ends with their death. The Snow Maiden, having experienced the warm feeling of affection and sincere attraction of the soul awakened for love, is melting in front of Mizgir, who in turn rushes into the lake and perishes.

Ostrovsky creates in the final of the play a tragic situation: the death of the Snow Maiden is not an accident, but a conscious step. It is inferior to the demand of Mizgir:

Leave childish fears

Unknown mischief! But if indeed

The trouble will come - then die together.

At the moment when before the great king of the Berendeyes, the Snow Maiden repeats the words of devotion and love, addressed

To the groom, a bright ray of the sun penetrates the morning mist, falls on it, and it melts. But, dying, she feels and thinks like a living, loving and, most importantly, a happy woman. For a moment of happiness in life, she is ready to give and give her life:

But what about me? Bliss or death?

What a delight! What feelings of languor!

Oh mother Spring, thank you for the joy,

For the sweet gift of love! ..

Mizgir also fulfills the word given to the Snow Maiden:

I am deceived by the gods; this is a joke

Cruel fate. If the gods

Deceivers, do not live in this world!

( He runs away to Yarilin mountain and throws himself into the lake. )

Events Snegurochki unfold in an ancient fairy-tale country, ruled by the wise and humane king Berendey, caring for his subjects. He is frightened by the "spiritual cold", which suddenly struck people. The death of the Snow Maiden and Mizgir destroys the charm of Frost: The sun will finally penetrate into the hearts of the people. In the final, King Berendey proclaims the fame of Jaril the Sun:

The Snow Maiden sad death

And the terrible death of Mizgir

We can not be disturbed;

The sun knows,

Whom to punish and pardon ...

We expel the last cold footprint

From our souls and turn to the Sun.

And I believe, it will look well

To the devotion of the humble Berendeys.

Lel sings the last song, the choir picks it up:

Light and power,

God is Jarilo.

Our Red Sun!

There is no more beauty in the world.

The play is full of folklore motifs, rituals, songs, legends. As characters, fairy-tale characters and images of pagan mythology appear in it (Snow Maiden, Santa Claus, Spring-Krasna, Leshiy, Maslenitsa, Yarilo-Sun), as well as ordinary people, residents of the Berendeyev kingdom: Bobyl Bakula, Bobylikha, shepherd Lel, prosperous Murash, a crowd of Berendeys, girls and boys, King Berendey, Mizgir is a merchant (merchant), his fiancee Kupava, whose rival is the Snow Maiden. The action takes place near Berendeyev's village, then in the verdant settlement of Berendeyevka, then in the palace of the Tsar, then before the dilapidated house of Bobyl, it is transferred to the reserved forest, and in the final of the play, it unfolds in the open space of the Yaril valley, where folk festivities take place and where the Snow Maiden is dying under hot sun rays, sacrificing themselves to love.

Based on Ostrovsky's play, he created his famous opera "The Snow Maiden" N. A. Rimsky-Korsakov; music for the production of "The Snow Maiden" in the Maly Theater was written by PI Tchaikovsky.

Back in the late 1840's. in rough drafts of Ostrovsky there is a phrase that can be called the key to all one hundred creativity. At once he firmly determined his path and remained faithful to him: "In order to be a people's writer, there is not enough one love for the homeland - love gives energy to the feeling, but does not give any content: one has to know his people well, to get along with him shorter , to grow together. The best school for artistic talent is the study of its own people, and its reproduction in artistic forms is the best field for creative activity. "

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