Why the participants of the Patriotic war was not fond of Leo Tolstoy

History 04/02/20 Why the participants of the Patriotic war didn’t love Leo Tolstoy

the novel “War and peace” was called by critics the best work of fiction about the war, many writers took work as a model for imitation. However, immediately after the part of the society perceived Tolstoy’s novel negatively. At the forefront of those who “War and peace” strongly like, were direct participants in the war of 1812, many of whom were still alive.

among the most prominent critics of the novel were, of course, Prince Pyotr Andreyevich Vyazemsky. Writer, poet, literary critic, statesman, founder of the Russian historical society. In his youth he joined the militia and was a direct participant in the war of 1812. For Borodino, where it was killed by a horse and then wounded a second, he received the order of St. Vladimir 4th class with bow. Viazemsky written “memories of 1812” was highly appreciated by his contemporaries for the accuracy and literary talent of the author.

Vyazemsky, Tolstoy criticized in the first place for false description of the events and, in General, and in the details.

Vyazemsky, Tolstoy was accused of distorting the image of the Emperor Alexander, as the whole scene of the novel the throwing cakes into the crowd of people made up. Leo did not agree and cited the fact that such a scene was described by Sergey Glinka in his book “notes on the 1812 Sergey Glinka, the first warrior of the Moscow militia”. But Glinka was a direct participant in this event. But after watching “Notes”, it is easy to verify that there is nothing like it. And this is only one example.

the Greatest claims of his contemporaries have been associated with the description of military operations. It concerns both parts and shared Tolstoy’s views on the course of events.

the then Minister of education Abraham Norov wrote a whole book “War and peace 1805-1812 from a historical point of viewtion and according to the memoirs of contemporaries”. In his view, all attempts to give thick descriptions of military actions, to talk about the strategy describe the disposition and even to draw plans only introduced readers astray. The temper was a participant of the Borodino battle in which he lost his feet, and, while went on the prosthesis, continued military service.

of Course, you can refer to the fact that military people can be closest to a purely professional rather than literary style. Although in that era the military just made the most educated and creative part of society. And many episodes of the novel, Tolstoy caused them bewilderment.

These seemingly small touches, like the confusion in uniforms or parts of uniforms and weapons, was a source of irritation. Military people, especially of that time, such errors are perceived extremely painful.

Referring to the battle of Ostrovno, Tolstoy describes the Russian Ulan: “Between the orange red lancers on horseback”, and fought with them French Dragoons: “it could be Seen the blue French Dragoons on gray horses.” But neither Russian Ulan nor any other had not only orange uniforms, but even parts of this color! As the French Dragoons never wore blue uniforms! However, in the battle of Ostrovno was not involved neither Russian lancers, like the Pavlograd hussars, which served as Nikolai Rostov.

Apparently, emphasizing the character of Anatole Kuragin, Tolstoy writes, as he walked during a performance in the theatre among the ranks, jingling spurs and a sword. But the officers never wore weapons and the spurs in the theater.

of these inaccuracies in the novel “War and peace” composed entire books. And let many a modern reader may seem unimportant, but the officers of that time, especially those who fought with Napoleon, the views were different.

As you correctly pointed out, Abraham Norov, reasoning Tolstoy really had an impact on readers. It is the “War and peace” Russian society was largely obliged perception of the battle of Austerlitz. Tolstoy showed the Russian army as in advance doomed to defeat. Kutuzov frankly asleep, because he doesn’t want to listen to disposition from nowhere (according to Tolstoy) who took the Austrian General Weyrother, which is why some instructed to draw up a battle plan.

it’s hard To believe especially those who still remember these people. Was still alive the spirit of great Suvorov, many of the soldiers had served under him for decades. At the head of the Russian army were the disciples of Suvorov: General Miloradovich was a floor General in the Italian and Swiss campaigns, General Bagration was the permanent commander of the vanguard or the rearguard, General Langeron took Ishmael Suvorov, Grand Duke Konstantin Pavlovich held with Suvorov’s Italian and Swiss campaigns, and received from him high marks for personal courage. Well, “anyone unknown Weyrother” this was Suvorov’s plans during the Swiss campaign. And was highly appreciated by Alexander Vasilyevich, because it was such a serious assignment. Somehow it does not fit it with a dull and sleepy picture of total doom and hopelessness.

as for the reasoning of Tolstoy about the war of 1812 in General and the battle of Borodino, they could not be perceived by the participants. According to them, victory in the war Russia was forced on the talent, the plans of the generals, quickness and courage of the performers, from private to General. And of course, the idea of Tolstoy the complete uselessness of any plans, that the ability of military leaders played no role, and everything depended on a random set of events and heroism of the little people, could not be accepted.

Cyril Shishkin

© Russian Seven

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